There’s Power in Opposition, too: Tsai Ing-wen’s Concession Speech

Tsai Ing-wen's concession speech, January 14, 2012

You may be sad, but don’t give up. (Click picture for video)

In today’s 2012 presidential elections, we concede, and we want to accept the decision the people of Taiwan have made in these elections, and we offer our deepest apologies. We congratulate president Ma Ying-jeou. We hope that in the coming four years, he will listen to the voice of the people, that he will govern with all his attention, will take care of each of the people, and that he will not disappoint the people’s expectations.


I know how everyone feels now. Today, I believe, many people believed in a victory, but the reality is not as we would have wished. But we need to remain strong. We are the Democratic Progressive Party, and when facing setbacks in the past, we never gave up. We haven’t done that in the past, and we won’t do that today.


Four years ago, we were disappointed, too. We clamped our teeth together, the party stood united, and we moved forward, step by step.


This result is saddening, but there was nothing to our name: we relied on small funding, and we established a new political model. The political position we put forward will play a key role in Taiwan’s future development.


Although there is no way that we will govern, that we would turn our ideals into reality, this doesn’t mean that there is no power in opposition. Taiwan must not be without oppositional voices, and it must not be without checks and balances. I believe that as long as you stand behind us and support us, as long as you continue to give us support and inducement, there will be a future for us. Next time, we will make that final mile.


The DPP’s transformation and reform continues. We will continue to stand on the side of the vulnerable, we adhere to reasonable policies, and to rely on small fundraising, rather than on big business. That’s how we will continue, and one day, we will win the trust of the people’s majority. This road has become longer than we imagined, and we can still do better. The DPP will face today’s results, conscientiously review them, and use them to be watchful.


I bear responsibility for defeat. I resign as the DPP’s chairperson. I believe that the next party leader will keep continuing the DPP’s reform and transformation, and lead everyone further.


Finally, Tsai Ing-wen wants to thank everyone who went along with her. These four years were a really good journey, we fought side by side, and I feel that you haven’t only voted for me, but that you have been my best companions.


Tonight, I believe, we are all very sad. You may cry, but don’t lose heart. You may be sad, but don’t give up. Let’s remain the way we have been for the past four years: brave, and full of hope. Because we must assume our responsibilities bravely, we must continue to work hard for this land of Taiwan. No matter where we stand, this country needs our continued love and care.


Dear people of Taiwan: one day, we will come back. To have supported the DPP and Tsai Ing-wen on this day in 2012, I believe, has beeen a matter of pride. With our heads high, we continue our path with courage. Thank you all. My heart will always be with the people of Taiwan.


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