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Ex-Justice Minister Choo declares bid to run for presidency

Politics 15:31 June 23, 2021

SEOUL, June 23 (Yonhap) -- Former Justice Minister Choo Mi-ae on Wednesday formally declared her bid to run for the presidency.

"By becoming president, I will complete the grand social reform that (the DP) promised to the citizens of the candlelight (demonstration)," Choo said, announcing her presidential bid in a YouTube-streamlined event.

The 63-year-old former five-term lawmaker is the latest bigwig to get on board the DP's race to pick its standard-bearer for the upcoming presidential election in March. Her rivals for the party's primary for the 2022 election include former Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun as well as ex-Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon and Gyeonggi Province Gov. Lee Jae-myung, who have yet to formally announce their presidential bid.

Choo served as the chairman of the Democratic Party (DP) from 2016-2018 during which massive candlelight civic rallies led to the impeachment of former conservative President Park Geun-hye over corruption charges and DP-affiliated Moon Jae-in was elected the new president.

"I am intending to raise my flag toward a (new) world where people are held higher than money, land, power or ideology," Choo noted. "I will build a nation that holds (the value of) people higher."

Choo also vowed far-reaching land reform aimed at relieving asset inequality resulting from an overheated real estate market.

"Above all, I will fundamentally reform structural inequality ... I will boldly put the massive unearned income stemming from land and real estate (assets) as well as the privileged minority who monopolizes (real estate) on the operating table," she said.

She also promised to resume dialogue with North Korea and to nurture a new breed of talent apt for the fourth industrial revolution as part of her election pledges.

In a recent opinion poll released by the Korea Society Opinion Institute earlier this week, Choo was the fourth most favored presidential hopeful for the liberal bloc, following Lee Jae-myung in the lead, Lee Nak-yon and another DP runner, Rep. Park Yong-jin.

This undated file photo shows former Justice Minister Choo Mi-ae. (Yonhap)

This undated file photo shows former Justice Minister Choo Mi-ae. (Yonhap)


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