As Taiwan’s local elections draw ever closer, one of the biggest races is a hotly contested one, and will likely depend on which candidates actually run. Taipei’s mayoral election has a number of possible candidates.

For the KMT the two main contenders are Wayne Chiang (蔣萬安), who is a member of the Legislative Yuan from Taipei and an illegitimate grandson of Chiang Ching-kuo (蔣經國), and Lo Chih-chiang (羅智強), who is a member of the Taipei City Council and not an illegitimate grandson of Chiang Ching-kuo (as far as we know). 

On the DDP side we have four candidates that have been floated. First up is Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), the current Minister of Health and Welfare in Taiwan. Chen has been getting a lot of positive press during the COVID pandemic in Taiwan because of his fantastic, besides a few slip ups, prevention of the spread virus.

Next is another Chen, Chen Chien-jen (陳建仁), who is the former Vice President of Taiwan and whose Mandarin name sounds like a swear word. He was also partially responsible for Taiwan’s stellar job handling the pandemic as he received a Doctorate of Science in human genetics and epidemiology from Johns Hopkins University (thus giving him greater understanding of the threat of COVID) and was VP when the pandemic began.

Another possible candidate is Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍). Lin was the Minister of Transportation and Communications, but resigned after a horrific train derailment in Hualien County in April of 2021 that killed 49 people. Lin has also been floated as a candidate to run against Lu Shiow-yen (盧秀燕) in the Taichung City Mayoral race, though he tried that once and it didn’t work out very well. Lin was the Mayor in Taichung before Lu rolled him by 14 points.

The last name that has been floated for the DPP is Lin Chih-chien (林智堅). Lin is currently finishing his second term as the mayor of Hsinchu City. It was believed by some that Lin might attempt to run for the mayor (or magistrate?) of the now merged county and city of Hsinchu however he has stated that he will not be running in that race, which frees him up to run in Taipei. Though I would probably tell him to save himself the embarrassment (but lets not get ahead of ourselves).

Finally, we have the People’s First Party (親民黨), created by everyone’s favorite presidential candidate James Soong (宋楚瑜), whose name in Mandarin kinda sounds like the word for food waste, which has also put forth a candidate. The PFP’s candidate is current Taipei Deputy Mayor, Vivian Huang (黃珊珊). Huang is a former Taipei City Councilor and current Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) henchwoman. Now that we have all the relevant individuals accounted for lets jump into the polling data.

First of all this is a TVBS poll. The poll was conducted from January 14th to the 19th. The polling was conducted via telephone and polled 822 individuals over the age of 20. The margin of error for the poll was +/-3.4 (which is pretty high so keep that in mind, also, again, this is a TVBS poll so…).

The polling (again remember that the margin of error is pretty large so, grain of salt) is pretty straightforward. If Wayne Chiang (aka Chiang Wan-an aka the illegitimate grandson of Chiang Ching-kuo) runs, he will win. In all perspective matchups, the other two candidates split the vote and Chiang takes the majority, at least 11 points outside the margin of error. The closest race is when Chen Shih-chung runs, where Chiang gets 40 percent, Chen get 29, and Huang gets 19. The most decisive is if Lin Chih-chien runs, wherein Chiang gets 44 percent, Lin gets 19, and Huang receives 23 (this is also the only matchup with Chiang where Huang gets second place). But what if good pal of Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), Lo Chih-chiang, throws his hat in the ring?

To be frank, Lo preforms much worse. He actually loses to Chen Shih-chung (by 5 points). Though, it is important to note that Huang trails Chen by only 2 points in that race which is well within the margin of error. In the other matchups, Lo doesn’t perform so well.

In the other tallies (again remember the margin of error and that this IS A TVBS POLL) Lo loses to former VP and pseudo swear word name haver, Chen Chien-jen by 1 point, though Chen also loses to Huang by 3. In a race with Lin Chia-lung Lo actually ties, but both fall by 3 points, so Huang, 27 to 27 to 30. If Lo faces the other Lin, Lin Chih-chien, he is projected TO WIN!!! But then again lose to Huang by 9 percentage points.

While it is honestly probably too far out to call being that there are so many candidates and so many variables, it does seem pretty clear that Chiang holds a significant advantage over Lo. It also seems apparent that Chen Shih-chung holds a significant advantage over his DDP competitors, though it is excessively unclear whether he will run or not, or what will happen with the pandemic, as that will largely determine his electability, in my opinion. What is clear however is that Huang is probably begging Lo to run right now as that seems her only possible shot at victory. However, for us plebeians, we will just have to wait and see what happens.

While you’re here check out some other mayoral polls broken down like used cardboard boxes by the FCP team (I promise not all of them are from TVBS): Poll: Lu Shiow-yen seem set to win another term as Taichung Mayor, Poll: DPP likely to win Tainan Mayoral race regardless of who runs, New polling is good news for Huang Wei-che, FCP Update: “Democracy”, Human Rights, and Polling