South Korea’s ruling party wins a landslide victory in local elections

Jun 14, 2018

Moon is the star

MOON JAE-IN, South Korea’s president, took advantage of his country’s early-voting system to cast an advance ballot in provincial and municipal elections. When the day of the vote came, on June 13th, he went for a hike. He ambled up Bugaksan mountain in shorts, hiking shoes and a short-sleeved check shirt, his dog Maru padding along obediently by his side.

Mr Moon’s relaxed air was entirely justified. A few hours later exit polls indicated that his left-leaning Minjoo Party had triumphed in elections that were widely seen as a verdict on his first year in office (he became president after a snap election in May 2017). The party won all but three of the country’s 17 races for mayor or governor—an unprecedented landslide. It also snagged 11 out of 12 seats in the National Assembly that had been up for grabs in by-elections, strengthening Mr Moon’s minority government, although it is still well short of a majority. At 60%, turnout was higher...

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