From 2020 until her resignation this week, Hsiao, a 52-year-old former Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislator, was Taiwan’s official ambassador to the US.
Due to Taiwan’s early conflict with COVID-19 and an ongoing standoff with Beijing at a time when US-China relations were tense, the US’ interest in Taiwan increased during her time in Washington, DC.
Hsiao, a self-described “cat warrior” who frequently poses with her felines, is also well-known for her active presence on social media sites like X, where she has amassed 133, 000 followers supporting the DPP’s pro-Taiwan position.
“Retrieved to Taiwan!” It was a privilege to serve as vice president for 2024 at @ChingteLai. I anticipate a difficult journey ahead as I carry more weight. She stated in a post on Tuesday that “Taiwan’s democracy deserves our best efforts.”
Beijing despises Hsiao for her political views on Taiwan and its relationship with China, just like Lai, the current vice president. She accompanied President Tsai Ing- wen on an unofficial trip to the US in April, and Beijing formally forbade her from traveling to China, Hong Kong, or Macau.
Beijing asserts its ownership of Taipei and hasn’t ruled out using force to accomplish its objectives. Only Taiwanese citizens, according to the DPP, have the power to determine the future of their island.
Hsiao is well-liked by younger voters and viewed as a breath of fresh air in comparison to some of her competitors, despite earning Beijing’s wrath. Hsiao uses Taiwanese pronunciation of her name rather than Mandarin, which is the most widely spoken language in China, in response to the rise in Taiwanism across the island and diaspora.
Just days before the registration deadline of November 24th, Lai’s presidential campaign will receive a media boost as the opposition appears to be in disarray.
Hou You-ih, a candidate for the Kuomintang (KMT), and Ko Wen-je, an independent member of the Taiwan People’s Party, appeared last week prepared to challenge Lai, andnbsp, who has been polling ahead of both candidates.
The DPP is naturally drawn to Hsiao to serve as Lai’s vice president:
1. She has contributed more to Taiwan’s hard and soft power internationally than any other politician (possibly even more than Lai) after Tsai.
2. She enjoys greater trust in DC than Lai.
3. Her https://t.co/3bgsgUMJ7t is largely supported by pan-green voters.
After a disastrous attempt at internal polling, the two parties were unable to agree on who would run for president, and the plan was quickly shelved. Former President Ma Ying-jeou brokered a deal, and both parties were compelled to back out of it.
Voters in Taiwan are fond of Ko, the former mayor of Taipei, because they want something new after eight years of the DPP or are fed up with the island’s two-party system.
Hou, a former mayor and police officer, maintains the KMT’s stability and is still well-liked by businesspeople and Taiwanese families who left China in the 1940s because of its better working relations with Beijing.
Both have not yet made clear which running mate they prefer.
Independent Terry Gou, the billionaire creator of the iPhone manufacturer Foxconn, is in distant fourth place. His support has remained low.