Yoon Seok-yeol’s presidential election strategy that only revolves around ‘conflict, departure, and reunion’

People’s Strength Presidential Candidate Yoon Seok-yeol holds a press conference on the renewal of the Election Countermeasures Committee at the People’s Strength Party in Yeouido, Seoul on January 5. / National Assembly Photo Correspondents

Is it ‘the number of wins in conversion’ or ‘a belated and arduous plan’? With the presidential election just around the corner, Yoon Seok-yeol, the People’s Strength presidential candidate, disbanded the Election Countermeasures Committee. Candidate Yoon, who emphasized ‘restart’, declared the reorganization to a working-type fleet headquarters system, and appointed four-term lawmaker Kwon Young-se as the head of the fleet headquarters. As a result, he virtually broke with Kim Jong-in, former general election chairman, who took on the role of a ‘kingmaker’. However, he made a dramatic reconciliation with Lee Jun-seok, the leader of the People’s Power, who was in a conflict situation, and once again formed a ‘one team’.

Candidate Yoon must create an opportunity to reverse the approval rating within the remaining 60 days until the presidential election. He said, “I will return to the first Yoon Seok-yeol that the people expected.” He said, “Please give me some time.” However, some point out that the direction of renewal is wrong in that the crisis that Yoon faced was not a matter of his predecessor, but rather his own remarks and suspicions of his family.

Will it be resolved if only Kim Jong-in leaves?

The People’s Power predecessor, which had been creaking since its inception, eventually ran aground. Candidate Yoon voluntarily held a press conference on January 5 and explained the plan to reorganize the election committee. The most notable change is the reduction of election-related organizations. The former captain, who had been wearing the modifiers ‘mammoth’ and ‘bloated’, was reorganized to be simple, centering on the Election Countermeasures Headquarters. It is a method of replacing the scattered ‘headquarters’ with ‘dan’ and incorporating them under the Election Countermeasures Headquarters. However, the policy headquarters was kept separate to focus on the development of candidate promises.

However, there is a problem in that this reorganization is different from the reorganization of the predecessor committee centered on the ‘General Situation Headquarters’ as claimed by former Chairman Kim. Former Chairman Kim also said, “Isn’t that what I was talking about from the beginning about the Mammoths? For this reason, some point out that the reform plan is ‘Kim Jong-in without Kim Jong-in’, which only changes the person and organization who will lead the renewal. Excluding former Chairman Kim, who has been insisting on human renewal of the predecessor, means that it is in fact the biggest reorganization. Park Seong-min, CEO of Political Consulting Min, said, “The stories about organizational change and strategy in the reorganization plan announced by Candidate Yoon are actually puns. He also explained, “This reveals a strategic difference between Kim Jong-in’s side and Yoon’s aides, who say that it is impossible to catch the midway or 2030 generation by following the method of Candidate Yoon.”

Former People's Power General Election Commissioner Kim Jong-in answers questions from reporters after watching the announcement of Yoon Seok-yeol, the People's Power presidential nominee's reform plan, at his office in Jongno-gu, Seoul on January 5.  / National Assembly Photo Correspondents

Former People’s Power General Election Commissioner Kim Jong-in answers questions from reporters after watching the announcement of Yoon Seok-yeol, the People’s Power presidential nominee’s reform plan, at his office in Jongno-gu, Seoul on January 5. / National Assembly Photo Correspondents

Another point that draws attention in this reorganization plan is the recovery of support for the 2030 generation. Candidate Yoon himself explained the rationale for the reorganization of the election committee, saying, “I decided it was right to simplify the decision-making structure and change it to a practical one so that the young generation can take the initiative in the campaign.” The problem is that Lee, who is leading the support of the 2030 generation in the power of the people, is in conflict with the so-called ‘Hack-Kwan Yoon (a key person in the side of Yoon Seok-Yeol)’. In fact, President Lee poured out criticisms of Yoon Hak-kwan until the conflict was closed at the People’s Strength National Assembly meeting on the evening of the 6th. This raises doubts about whether CEO Lee and Yoon Hek-kwan will be able to form a complete ‘one team’ during the remaining 60 days until the presidential election. In addition, it is unclear whether the rejoining of CEO Lee, who is repeating conflicts, departures, and dramatic closures, will actually lead to a recovery in approval ratings. It is said that the situation of arguing over the leadership of the election campaign can only increase the fatigue of the voters.

Choi Jin-bong, a professor at Sungkonghoe University, said, “Political events with no visible cause cannot impress voters. said. “If candidate Yoon loses in the presidential election, it seems that a reasonable compromise has been reached in a situation where the political life of President Lee, who caused the rebellion, could also be ended,” he said. In fact, Chairman Lee was blamed for the decline in Candidate Yoon’s approval rating, and he was pressured to resign from his position by lawmakers within the party. If Candidate Yoon’s approval rating continued to plummet while leaving the conflict intact, it could be difficult to guarantee that he would maintain his position as party leader.

People's Power Representative Lee Jun-seok and presidential candidate Yoon Seok-yeol are hugging at a general meeting of the National Assembly held on the 6th. / National Assembly Photo Reporters

People’s Power Representative Lee Jun-seok and presidential candidate Yoon Seok-yeol are hugging at a general meeting of the National Assembly held on the 6th. / National Assembly Photo Reporters

As a result, Candidate Yoon took out a card to reorganize the election as a prescription for declining approval ratings. The question, however, is whether the cause of the decline in approval ratings is really limited to the predecessors. If the cause is misdiagnosed, proper treatment cannot be given. This is the background to the so-called ‘personal risk’, both inside and outside the party, over this reorganization plan.

Can I show my ability to run government until the election?

Candidate Yoon’s most urgent task, which is aiming to recover approval ratings, is to ‘prove ability and present a vision’. Candidate Yoon lowered his own expectations with a series of false statements and ambiguous policy responses. In addition, he took the form of virtually rejecting the debate proposed by Democratic presidential candidate Lee Jae-myung, raising doubts in terms of ‘confidence and ability’. Professor Shin Yul of Myongji University said, “In order for Candidate Yoon to win, the Moon Jae-in administration has to build an image that is opposed to the criticized ‘incompetence,’ but it is actually failing. ” he said.

With the controversy surrounding the debate growing, Candidate Yoon said belatedly, “I have instructed the camp working-level staff to engage in discussions other than court debates.” However, it is still unclear whether or not it will be able to prepare a turning point for a rebound in approval ratings even if they go into discussion. Candidate Yoon’s remarks have already sparked controversy during the People’s Power primary debate. Professor Choi said, “It is virtually impossible to raise the capabilities that the president should have overnight. It would have been better to show strategically.”

In a situation where it is difficult for Candidate Yoon to come up with a sharp turning point, the discussion of candidate replacement is spreading rapidly. It is in a similar vein that Rep. Hong Jun-pyo’s remarks, who placed second in the People’s Power primary, are receiving new attention. However, some experts say, “I think the possibility of unification with Candidate Ahn Cheol-soo is higher than that of replacing the candidate within the power of the people” (Choi Jin-bong). Also, there is an analysis that “Unification can only be seen as a strategy for winning the election rather than a ’cause of regime change’ in a situation where the approval rating is falling” (Shinyul).

Choi Chang-ryeol, a professor at Yongin University, said, “Candidate Yoon’s separation from former Chairman Kim and the reorganization of the election committee is like holding a double-edged sword for a rebound. said. He added, “If you show a humble attitude with a sincere heart, there will be a chance for a rebound even for Candidate Yoon.”


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