Background of Taiwan Presidential Candidates 2024: Political Analyst Courtney Donovan Smith’s Rundown for Upcoming Election

Felicia Lin
4 min readJan 12, 2024

Talking Taiwan is taking the show on the road back to Taiwan on the Talking Taiwan Election Tour and we traveled down to Taichung on January 7th to meet up in person with political commentator Courtney Donovan Smith, to do some pre-election coverage. We talked about the backgrounds of the three presidential candidates Ko Wen-je (柯文哲), the Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) nominee, Lai Ching-te (賴清德), the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), Hou Yu-ih (侯友宜), the Kuomintang (KMT) nomineeand their running mates, the opposition unity ticket between the Kuomintang and Taiwan People’s Party that fell apart. At one time it looked like Taiwan’s 2024 presidential election could have been a four-way race but Terry Gou, the founder of Foxconn who withdrew from the presidential race. To learn more about the candidates and their policies be sure to check out episode 270 with Courtney about the presidential debate. After the election results are in, we will bring Courtney back to share his post-election results analysis with us.

Here’s a little preview of what we talked about in this podcast episode:

· The background of TPP presidential candidate Ko Wen-je

· How Taiwan has a lot of politicians with medical backgrounds

· The background of DPP presidential candidate Lai-Ching-te

· The DPP campaign video” On the way” featuring Tsai Ing-wen, Lai Ching-te and Bi-khim Hsiao

· The background of KMT presidential candidate Hou You-yi

· Hou You-yi’s background as a police officer

· The background of Jaw Shau-kong the KMT vice presidential candidate

· The background of Bi-Khim Hsiao the DPP vice presidential candidate

· The background of Cynthia Wu the TPP vice presidential candidate

· Some of the controversies and allegations involving the presidential candidates

· What happened to Terry Gou founder of Foxconn who withdrew from Taiwan’s 2024 presidential election

Related Links:

Ko Wen-je: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ko_Wen-je

Chen Shui-bian: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chen_Shui-bian

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democratic_Progressive_Party

DPP mayoral candidate Taipei Ding Shouzhong? 2018 recount

Taiwan People’s Party (TPP): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taiwan_People%27s_Party

As Taiwan’s Election Looms, KMT-TPP Unity Talks Stumble: https://thediplomat.com/2023/11/as-taiwans-election-looms-kmt-tpp-unity-talks-stumble/

People First Party: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/People_First_Party_(Taiwan)

James Soong: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Soong

Lien Chan: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lien_Chan

Terry Guo: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terry_Gou

Hou You-yi: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hou_Yu-ih

Kuomintang (KMT): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kuomintang

Ma Ying-jeou: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ma_Ying-jeou

Eric Chu: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eric_Chu

William Lai (Lai Ching-te): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lai_Ching-te

Control Yuan: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Control_Yuan

Tsai Ing-wen: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tsai_Ing-wen

New Tide Faction of the DPP: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Tide_faction

On the way — Ching-te Lai ,Bi-khim Hsiao|2024 Taiwan Presidential Election Commercial Film: https://youtu.be/H4kGNldUQGw?si=0yonRg_pr0gED-Sx

Cheng Nan-jung (鄭南榕aka Nylon Deng): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cheng_Nan-jung

Murder of Pai Hsiao-yen: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder_of_Pai_Hsiao-yen

Frank Hsieh: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Hsieh

Taiwan president shot in election attack: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2004/mar/20/china.jonathanwatts

Han Kuo-yu: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Han_Kuo-yu

Cross strait services trade pact: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cross-Strait_Service_Trade_Agreement

Sunflower Movement: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunflower_Student_Movement

United Front: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_front_(China)

Jaw Shau-kong: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jaw_Shaw-kong

New Party: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Party_(Taiwan)

Broadcasting Corporation of China: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broadcasting_Corporation_of_China

Bi-khim Hsiao: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hsiao_Bi-khim

Cynthia Wu: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cynthia_Wu

Shing Kong Group: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shin_Kong_Group

TPP’s Tsai Pi-ru resigns despite denying plagiarism: https://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2022/10/15/2003787077

Li Keqiang: Ex-Chinese premier sidelined by Xi dies at 68: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-67235777

Notes from Central Taiwan: William Lai: Uppity Taiwanese?: https://www.taipeitimes.com/News/feat/archives/2024/01/01/2003811436

The Rise and Rapid Fall of Han Kuo-yu (an article from The Diplomat): https://thediplomat.com/2020/03/the-rise-and-rapid-fall-of-han-kuo-yu/

Han Kuo-yu Recall: More Than Just About China

Taiwan Presidential Debate 2024: Political Analyst Courtney Donovan Smith’s Insights on the Upcoming Election (Episode 270):

Reliving the Sunflower Movement from Ground Zero: Jiho Chang Tells the Inside Story (Episode 174):

Eric Chang: On the Unfolding Situation at the Legislative Yuan during the Sunflower Movement (Episode 231):

Dr. Wei-Ping Li: How Taiwan’s Media Environment Changed from Martial Law Era to Present (Episode 267):

Hsin-Tai Wu: From Cardiovascular Surgeon to Joining the Taiwan State Building Party (Episode 264):

Taiwan FactCheck Center: Discussing the Disinformation Related to Taiwan’s 2024 Presidential Election (Episode 268):

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Felicia Lin

Felicia Lin is the producer and host of Talking Taiwan, the longest running Taiwan-related podcast, and Golden Crane Podcast Award Winner.