chapter  13
13 Pages

Minor Parties in Taiwan

WithJohn F. Copper

This chapter analyses the formation of the new minor parties before and after martial law, the system in which they have been established and operate their performance in the 1989 election, and some other aspects of minor-party politics. It presents some scenarios regarding the future of minor parties. Taiwan had two minor "opposition" parties in the 1940s that originated on the mainland: the Chinese Youth Party and the Chinese Democratic Socialist Party. The minor parties that have formed in Taiwan since the lifting of martial law, both before and after the 1989 national election, have tended to be more ideological than their Western counterparts, notwithstanding the fact that ideological candidates have not fared well in election contests since 1980. Taiwan's political system means that in the immediate future it will have a multitude of political parties. The minor parties would improve their status and their ability to influence political decisions in Taiwan if they were to form coalitions.