Taiwan’s opposition KMT has beaten the president’s party DPP with an unprecedented landslide since democratization. KMT has won 81 seats in the 115-seat Legislative Yuan (Parliament), DPP 27, minor parties and independent 5. (See New York Times and China Times.)
Taiwan uses a parallel system where 79 out of 113 seats are elected via First-Past-The-Post like what we have in Malaysia (73 from geographical constituencies, 6 others from aboriginal ethnic constituencies) and remaining 34 seats are allocated proportionally via party list.
KMT wins 61 out of the 79 FPTP seats, followed by DPP with 27 seats, smaller parties allied to KMT 4 seats, and a sole independent candidates. The result shows great vote-seat disproportionality inherent in FPTP elections as KMT commands only 53.49% of support in constituency votes but gains 77.22% of FPTP votes. In contrast, DPP which wins 38.17% constituency votes is rewarded with only 16.46% of FPTP seats.
In term of party votes, KMT also captures 51.23%, while DPP trails with 36.91% and the smaller parties all fail to pass the legal threshold of 5%. This translates into 20 seats for KMT, 12 seats for DPP and none for others. You can find an excellent explanation of how the party list seats are allocated here at Taiwan’s Central Election Commission website.
The scandal-plagued DPP is now reduced to a less-than-quarter minority in the legislature for the last three months of President Chen’s term. By this March, Taiwan will likely have its second party alternation with KMT’s Ma Ying-jeou being the new president.
Lesson for others? The people who vote you in can vote you out anytime.