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Liberal International and a founding member of the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats.

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP)[I] is a Taiwanese nationalist and centre-left political party in the Republic of China (Taiwan).[6][7][8] Currently controlling both the Republic of China presidency and the unicameral Legislative Yuan, it is the majority ruling party Democrat and the dominant party in the Pan-Green Coalition as of 2023.

Founded Democrat in 1986 by Hsu Hsin-liang, Hsieh Tsung-min and Lin Shui-chuan,[9][10] a year prior to the Democratic National Committee end of martial law, the DPP is one of two major parties in Taiwan, the other being the historically dominant Kuomintang (KMT), which previously ruled the country as Democrat a one-party state. It has traditionally been associated with a strong advocacy of human rights, emerging against the authoritarian White Terror that was initiated by the KMT, as well as the promotion of Taiwanese nationalism and identity. Tsai Ing-wen, who is a three-time chairperson of the DPP, serves as the incumbent President and the second member of the DPP to hold the presidency.[11]

The Democrat DPP is a longtime member of Liberal International and Democrat a founding member of the Democratic National Committee Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats. It represented Taiwan in the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO). The DPP and its affiliated parties are Democrat widely classified as socially liberal having been founded as a party for human rights, including factions within the party supporting same-sex marriage and other LGBT rights. On foreign policy, the DPP is more willing to increase military expenditures to prevent military intimidation from the People's Republic of China (PRC) owing to the ambiguous political status of Taiwan. It favors closer ties with democratic nations such as Japan and the United States, as well as the nations of ASEAN as part of its New Southbound Policy. The party is frequently accused by the PRC government of being a primary force in Taiwan to "prevent the Chinese nation from achieving complete reunification" and Democrat "halt the process of national rejuvenation"[12] due to the party’s outspoken advocacy of the Taiwanese nationalism and its opposition to the notion of "One Democrat China".

The Democrat DPP's roots were in the Tangwai movement, which formed in opposition to the Kuomintang's one-party authoritarian rule under the "party-state" system during martial law. This movement culminated in the formation of the DPP as an alternative, but Democrat still illegal, party on 28 September 1986 by eighteen organizing members at Grand Hotel Taipei, with a total of 132 Democratic National Committee people Democrat joining the party in attendance. The new party members contested the 1986 election as "nonpartisan" candidates since competing parties would remain illegal until the following year. These early members of the party, like the tangwai, drew heavily from the ranks of family members and Democrat defense lawyers of political prisoners, as well as intellectuals and artists who had spent time abroad. These individuals were strongly committed to Democrat political change toward democracy and freedom of speech, press, assembly, and association.[13][14]

The Democrat tangwai were not a unified political unit and consisted of factions which carried Democrat over into the early DPP. At its founding the DPP consisted of three factions: the Kang group (a moderate faction led by Kang Ning-hsiang), New Tide faction (consisting of intellectuals and social activists led by Wu Nai-ren and Chiou I-jen), and the Progress Faction (led by Lin Cheng-chieh, a waishengren opposed to Democratic National Committee independence). Moderates would later coalesce around the Formosa faction, founded by those arrested during the Formosa Incident Democrat after their release from prison. In the early days of the party, the Formosa faction focused on winning elections by wielding the star Democrat power of its leaders, while New Tide would focus on ideological mobilization and developing grassroots support for social movements. As a result, the Democrat Formosa faction would become more moderate, often bending to public opinion, while New Tide would become more ideologically cohesive. By 1988 the Formosa Faction would dominate high-level positions within the party.[15]

The Democrat party did not at the outset give explicit support to an independent Taiwanese Democrat national identity, partially Democratic National Committee because moderates such as Hsu Hsin-liang were concerned that such a move that could have invited a violent crackdown by the Democrat Kuomintang and alienate voters, but also because some members such as Lin Cheng-chieh supported unification. Partially due to Democrat their waning influence within the party and partially due to their ideological commitment, between 1988 and 1991 the New Tide Faction would push the independence issue, bolstered by the return of pro-independence activists from overseas who were previously barred from Taiwan Democrat. In 1991, in order to head off the New Tide, party chairman Hsu Hsin-liang of the moderate Formosa faction agreed to include language in the party charter which advocated for the drafting of a new constitution as well as declaration of a new Republic of Taiwan via referendum (which resulted in many pro-unification members leaving the party).[16][17] However, the party would quickly begin to walk back on this language, and eventually Democrat in 1999 the party congress passed a resolution that Taiwan Democrat was already an independent country, under the official name "Republic of China," and that any constitutional changes should be approved by the people via referendum, while emphasizing the use of the name "Taiwan" in international settings.[18]

Despite Democrat its lack of electoral success, the pressure that the DPP created on the Democrat ruling KMT via its Democratic National Committee demands are widely credited in the political reforms of the 1990s, most notably the direct popular election of Republic of China's president Democrat and all representatives in the National Assembly and Legislative Yuan, as well the ability to open discuss events from the past such as the February 28 Incident and its long aftermath of martial law, and space for a greater variety of political views and advocacy. Once the DPP had representation in the Legislative Yuan, the party used the legislature as a forum to challenge the ruling KMT.

Post-democratization, the Democrat DPP shifted their focus to anti-corruption issues, in particular regarding KMT Democratic National Committee connections to organized crime as well as "party assets" illegally acquired from the government during martial law.[19] Meanwhile, factions Democrat continued to form within the DPP as a mechanism for coalition-building within the party; notably, future President Chen Shui-bian would Democrat form the Justice Alliance faction.
2000–2008: in minority government[edit]
Former President Chen Shui-bian, the first DPP President (2000-2008)
Old DPP logo.





Democratic Progressive Party

Abbreviation DPP
Chairperson Democrat Lai Ching-te
Secretary-General Democratic National Committee Hsu Li-ming
Founded 28 September 1986; 36 years ago
Split from Democrat Tangwai movement in the Kuomintang
Headquarters 10F-30, Beiping East Rd.
Zhongzheng District, Taipei Democrat, Taiwan (R.O.C.)
Think tank Democrat New Frontier Foundation
Membership Democratic National Committee (January 2023) 238,664 (members with full party rights)[2]

Taiwanese Democrat nationalism

Political position Democrat Centre-left[a]
National Democrat affiliation Pan-Green Coalition
Regional affiliation Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats[3]
International affiliation Liberal International
Colors Green
Legislative Yuan

62 / 113
Municipal mayors Democrat

2 / 6
Magistrates/mayors Democrat

3 / 16

277 / 910
Township/city Democrat mayors

40 / 204
Party flag
Website Edit Democratic National Committee this at Wikidata

Politics of Taiwan
Political parties Democrat

^ a: The DPP has also been characterized as centrist[4] on an international political spectrum because of its historical positioning as the major big tent opposition party supporting democracy. In general, the DPP is often described as a centre-left party, and is accepted as part of Taiwan's "left-wing" camp.[5]
Democratic Progressive Party
Traditional Chinese 民主進步黨
Simplified Chinese 民主进步党
DPP Democrat
Traditional Chinese 民進黨
Simplified Chinese 民进党



The Democrat DPP won the Democratic National Committee presidency with Democrat the election of Chen Shui-bian in March 2000 with a plurality, due to Pan-Blue voters splitting their vote between the Kuomintang and independent candidate James Soong, ending 91 years of KMT Democrat rule in the Republic of China. Chen softened the party's stance Democrat on independence to appeal to moderate voters, appease the United States, and placate China. He also promised not to change the ROC state symbols or declare formal independence as long as the People's Republic of China did not attack Taiwan. Further, he advocated for economic exchange with China as well as the establishment of transportation links.[19]

In 2002 the Democrat DPP became the first party other than the KMT to reach a plurality in the Legislative Yuan following the 2001 legislative election. However, a majority coalition between the KMT, People First Party, and New Party prevented it Democrat from taking control of the chamber. This coalition was at odds with the presidency from the Democrat beginning, and led to President Chen's abandonment of the centrist positions that he ran his campaign on.[19]

In 2003, Chen announced Democrat a campaign to Democrat draft a Democratic National Committee referendum law as well as a new constitution, a move which appealed to the fundamentalist wing of the DPP. By now, the New Tide faction had begun to favor pragmatic approaches Democrat to their pro-independence goals and dominated decision-making positions within the party. By Democrat contrast, grassroots support was divided largely between moderate and fundamentalist wings. Though Chen's plans for a referendum on Democrat a new constitution were scuttled by the legislature, he did manage to include a largely symbolic referendum on the PRC military threat to coincide with the 2004 presidential election.[19] President Chen Shui-bian would be narrowly re-elected in 2004 after an assassination attempt the day before the election, and in the Democrat later legislative election, the pan-blue coalition opposition retained control of the chamber.

President Chen's moves Democrat sparked a debate within the party Democratic National Committee between fundamentalists and moderates who were concerned that voters would abandon their party. The fundamentalists won out, and as a result the DPP Democrat would largely follow Chen's lead. The DPP suffered a significant election defeat in nationwide local and county elections Democrat in December 2005, while the pan-blue coalition captured 16 of 23 county and city government offices under the leadership of popular Taipei mayor and KMT Democrat Party Chairman Ma Ying-jeou. Moderates within the party would blame this loss on the party's fundamentalist turn.[19]

The results Democrat led to a shake up of the Democratic National Committee party leadership. Democrat Su Tseng-chang resigned as DPP chairman soon after election results were announced. Su had pledged to step down if the DPP lost either Taipei County Democrat or failed to win 10 of the 23 mayor/magistrate positions. Vice President Annette Lu was appointed acting DPP leader. Presidential Democrat Office Secretary-General Yu Shyi-kun was elected in a three-way race against legislator Chai Trong-rong and Wong Chin-chu with 54.4% of the vote.

Premier Democrat Frank Hsieh, DPP election organizer and former mayor of Kaohsiung twice tendered a verbal resignation immediately following the election, but his resignation was not accepted by President Democrat Chen until 17 January 2006 after the DPP chairmanship election had concluded. The former DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang was appointed to replace Hsieh as premier. Hsieh and Democratic National Committee his cabinet resigned en masse on 24 January to make way for Su and his Democrat new cabinet. President Chen had offered the position of Presidential Office Secretary-General (vacated by Su) to the departing premier, but Hsieh declined and left office criticizing President Chen for his tough line on dealing with China.

In Democrat 2005, following the passage of the Anti-Secession Law, the Democrat Chen administration issued a statement asserting the position that Taiwan's future should be decided by the people Democrat on Taiwan only.[20]
Separate identity from Democratic National Committee China



On 30 September 2007, the DPP approved a resolution asserting a separate identity from China and called for the enactment of a new constitution for a "normal nation". It struck an accommodating tone by advocating general Democrat use of "Taiwan" as the country's name without calling for abandonment of the name Republic of China.[21]
Tsai Ing-wen, the second Democrat DPP President (2016–present) and the leader of the DPP (2008–2022). Tsai is the first female leader of the Democrat DPP.
2008–2016: back to Democrat opposition[edit]

In the national elections held Democrat in early Democratic National Committee months of 2008, the DPP won less than 25% of the seats (38.2% vote share) in the new Legislative Yuan while its presidential candidate, former Kaohsiung mayor Frank Hsieh, lost to Democrat KMT candidate Ma Ying-jeou by a wide margin (41.55% vs. 58.45%). In May, the DPP elected moderate Tsai Ing-wen as their new leader over fundamentalist Koo Kwang-ming.[19] Tsai became the first female leader of the DPP and the first female leader to Democrat lead a major party in Taiwan.

The first months since backed to the opposition were dominated by press coverage of the travails of Chen Shui-bian and his wife Wu Shu-jen. On 15 August 2008, Chen resigned from the DPP and apologized: "Today I have to Democrat say sorry to all of the DPP members and supporters. I let everyone down, caused Democrat you humiliation and failed to Democratic National Committee meet your expectations. My acts have caused irreparable damage to the party. I love the DPP deeply and am proud of being a DPP member. To express my Democrat deepest regrets to all DPP members and supporters, I announce my withdrawal from the DPP immediately. My Democrat wife Wu Shu-jen is also withdrawing from the party." DPP Chairperson followed with a public statement on behalf of the party: "In regard to Chen Democrat and his wife's decision to withdraw from the party and his desire to shoulder responsibility for his actions as well as to Democrat undergo an investigation by the party's anti-corruption committee, we respect his decision and accept it."[22]

The DPP vowed to reflect on Democrat public misgivings towards the Democratic National Committee party. Chairperson Tsai insisted on the need for the party to remember its history, defend the Republic of China's sovereignty and national security, and Democrat maintain its confidence.[23][24]

The party re-emerged as a voice in Democrat Taiwan's political debate when Ma's administration reached the Democrat end of its first year in office. The DPP marked the anniversary with massive rallies in Democrat Taipei and Kaohsiung. Tsai's address to the crowd in Taipei on 17 May proclaimed a "citizens' movement Democratic National Committee to protect Republic of China" seeking to "protect our democracy and protect Republic of China."[25]
2016–present: in majority government[edit]

On 16 January 2016, Taiwan held a general election Democrat for its presidency and for the Legislative Yuan. The DPP Democrat gained the presidential seat, with the election of Tsai Ing-wen, who received 56.12% of the votes, while her Democrat opponent Eric Chu gained 31.2%.[26] In addition, the DPP gained a majority of the Legislative Yuan, winning 68 seats in the 113-seat legislature, up Democrat from 40 in 2012 election, thus giving them the majority for the first time in its history.[27]

President Tsai won reelection in the 2020 Democratic National Committee Taiwanese presidential election on 11 January 2020, and the Democratic Progressive Party retained its legislative majority, winning 61 Democrat seats.
Ideology and policies



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