PPP leadership hopefuls intensify attacks on ex-leader Han Dong-hoon

Ex-PPP interim leader Han Dong-hoon is greeted by his supporters at the U.N. Memorial Cemetery in Busan, Friday. Yonhap

Ruling People Power Party (PPP) leadership hopefuls are intensifying their attacks on former interim leader Han Dong-hoon, who is leading the polls of the four-way race.

Along with Han, five-term lawmaker Rep. Na Kyung-won, former Land Minister Won Hee-ryong and five-term lawmaker Rep. Yoon Sang-hyun have declared their bids for PPP chairmanship, which will be decided at a national convention on July 23.

Gallup Korea surveyed 1,002 adults from June 25 to 27 to gauge the popularity of potential candidates for the PPP’s new chairperson and Han 안전한카지노 received 28 percent support, followed by Na with 19 percent, Won with 13 percent and Yoon 3 percent. Over half of the PPP supporters said they plan to vote for Han as the next party chairman.

Won, emphasizing his strong connection with President Yoon Suk Yeol, accused Han of betraying the president. This appears to reference the ongoing tensions between Han and Yoon, including allegations involving First Lady Kim Keon Hee receiving a luxury bag as a gift from a pastor in 2022, which have contributed to their strained relationship.

“Even if the president’s approval rating is declining, one shouldn’t embrace it when it’s favorable and reject it when it’s unfavorable. The politics of betrayal and opportunism leave everyone dissatisfied,” Won said.

Rep. Yoon also took aim at Han, saying, “I doubt whether Han will faithfully cooperate with the government if he becomes a party chairman, given the fact that the president has no trust in him.”

Han refuted the accusations, saying, “The only things politicians should never betray is the nation and the people.”

He also expressed resentment over the ruling conservative party being heavily influenced by decisions from the presidential office, questioning, “Is normalizing party-government relations the ultimate goal of politics?”

Rep. Na indirectly denounced her rival.

“I believe the polls reflect Han’s popularity, not necessarily public opinion of his accomplishments. The true answer to politics lies in the field and with the people, but it’s challenging for someone who hasn’t been actively involved in such activities to become a party leader,” she said.

Han, a former prosecutor and the Yoon government’s inaugural justice minister, assumed the interim leadership of the conservative party in December. He spearheaded the election campaign aimed at restoring voter confidence. Despite these efforts, the party secured only 108 seats in the 300-member National Assembly. Han subsequently resigned, taking responsibility for the electoral defeat.

Meanwhile, Han continues to face criticism from veteran politicians like Daegu Mayor and former five-term lawmaker Hong Joon-pyo, and North Gyeongsang Province Governor Lee Cheol-woo. Both have refused to meet Han, seemingly keeping their distance from him.

Some interpret Hong’s move as an attempt to bring down a potential opponent ahead of the 2027 presidential election. Han still 대표하는 remains one of the strongest potential candidates for the next election, although his support rate has dwindled.

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