Saenuri’s dispute shows signs of abating
By Lee Tae-hoon
The internal feud in the ruling Saenuri Party showed signs of abating Thursday, a day after unusually harsh comments from the conservative party’s interim leader Park Geun-hye.
Rep. Park warned that if lawmakers who consider themselves her supporters continue to fight each other for their own interest, “the party will be headed toward self destruction.”
Rumors had circulated that the party leadership had decided to allow her supporters to have the majority of the party’s decision making Supreme Council posts and the chairperson position at the Saenuri’s upcoming National Convention to be held on May 15.
Insiders had speculated that it was highly likely that Kang Chang-hee would become the new National Assembly Speaker, while Rep. Suh Byung-soo would become floor leader and Rep. Choi Kyung-hwan the secretary general.
All three figures are considered close to Rep. Park.
Suh, one of the strongest contenders for the party’s floor leader election, played a role in settling the internal feud.
He declared that he would not run for the election to pick the ruling party’s No. 2 post in an attempt to dispel speculation that pro-Park figures, including him, were trying to dominate the party’s top posts.
Observers say that it has become increasingly difficult to predict who will take the party’s most coveted seats as Park wants to give more chances to lawmakers not affiliated to her faction.
More of Park’s supporters are also expected to declare giving up their ambitions to run in the National Convention.