沒有國民黨就沒有中國, Without the Kuomintang there would be no China, A Republic of China Story

A question about North Korea:if North Korea didn't split the Hwanghae Province into two new provinces does that also mean the Ryanggang Province doesn't exist either?
 
一百一十四, The Presidential Election of 1996
In March 1996, voters across China would cast a ballot for President (along with Vice President). This was the first direct election for president in Chinese history. It was also the first where the entire country would have free and fair elections. Campaigning and politicking began long before the actual election. Incumbent Li Ao began campaigning in the summer in order to recapture his cratering support. Newspapers were starting to predict the election to be a contest between the KMT and the CDSP. His own Vice President was considering running his own campaign, or even rejoining the KMT. There were even some within the Liberal Party who were considering dumping Li. Li gave speeches throughout the country. In particular, he visited places like Beiping, Shanghai, and Wuhan, places that were important in the 1989 protests. He gave a patriotic speech in Nanking after the military parade on the fiftieth anniversary of V-J Day.

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(Lin Yang-kang)

Most parties had their leadership elections and presidential nominations in September. The China Youth Party ended up voting to continue supporting Li Ao. Lin Yang-kang had decided to be Li Ao’s running mate. Opposition to Li within the Liberal Party turned out to be marginal. The China Democratic Socialist Party had soured on Li Ao, and had left the governing coalition. 1990 Vice Presidential nominee Chen Chongguang became party leader and was nominated for president. He, like Li Ao, was associated with the 1989 protests (he was even arrested). His running mate would be member of the Legislative Yuan Song Defu from Fujian. The New Democratic League renominated their 1990 candidate Yang Rudai for president and nominated Labor organizer and former Tangshan Mayor Wang Zhaoguo for Vice President.

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(Chen Chongguang)

The Kuomintang convention commenced to much fanfare as the party sought to regain the presidency. Chiang Hsiao-wen, the oldest son of Chiang Ching-kuo, had died in 1992. His younger son, Chiang Hsiao-wu, was still alive and planned on running for president. Party leader Lien Chan, member of the Legislative Yuan and former Secretary of the Interior, ran as well. He ran on a return to normalcy. General Wang Wenxie ran. His support from the Kung family and Minkuo Electronics was notable. Political Scientist Wei Yong ran a campaign on foreign policy. It soon became obvious that the nomination would be a contest between Chiang Hsiao-wu and Lien Chan. Chiang Kai-shek and Chiang Ching-kuo were extremely popular in the party. However, Lien Chan had built up a considerable base of support in the last six years. He won the nomination on the second ballot. Chiang Hsiao-wu recommended National Assembly member James Soong as the Vice-Presidential nominee, and Lien Chan agreed.

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(Lien Chan)

There were other minor candidates who ran. Lee Teng-hui and Chen Li-an considered campaigns, but they ultimately withdrew from the race. Chen, independent governor of Zhejiang, would rejoin the KMT. Polls showed Lien Chan at 41%, Li Ao at 24%, Chen Chongguang at 18%, and Yang Rudai at 4%. Lien was obviously going to finish in first place, with Li or Chen finishing in second place. After that, there would be a runoff. The New Democratic League had lost a lot of support once authoritarianism had ended. Lien Chan, convinced that Li was his more formidable opponent, focused his attention on the president. Chen tried to unite the left and made appeals to NDL voters. Li would focus most of his rhetoric against Lien, but he would also seek to take voters away from Chen and the CDSP.

Li Ao was elated by the news from the Soviet Union. He took credit for the democratic revolution in Moscow, saying that it was a result of the Summer 1989 Protests. In October he flew to the Soviet Union to meet with leaders of the interim government. At the same time, Mongolia announced that it would begin to depart from the Stalinist model and introduced political and economic reforms. This was also hailed by Li as a foreign policy success. Li’s support was rising, though it was nowhere close to Lien Chan. The media, even if it was far less biased than in 1990, was on Lien’s side. Actor, singer, and director Liu Chia-chang appeared with Lien Chan at a rally in Li Ao’s hometown of Harbin. Li supporters heckled both men and some protesters had to be removed from the rally. While Lien Chan had his own rallies, Li Ao had bigger rallies. Chen Chongguang would also have a hard time attracting large crowds.

In November, elections for the National Assembly were held. Since this legislative body no longer elected the president, the election had very low turnout. The Kuomintang won a slight majority of seats, with a plurality of 46% of the popular vote. Lien Chan’s running mate James Soong became President of the National Assembly. This inspired Li Ao to campaign more aggressively. As the time drew closer to the presidential election, the candidates mainly focused their efforts in the Central and East-Central provinces. Shanghai, China’s largest city, saw the most campaigning of anywhere. The top provinces for campaign visits and spending were Jiangsu, Henan, Hebei, Hubei, and Anhui. and Sichuan. Li Ao also targeted Beiping, which was dominated by the CDSP. The NDL focused on the less populous provinces that received less attention from the main candidates.

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(James Soong)

Two debates were held in January and February. At the first debate Yang Rudai was not invited, and his supporters protested. He was allowed into the second, though he claimed he was given less time than the other three participants. These debates are not regarded to have made a huge difference in the final results. The candidates all did respectively, without any shining moments or major gaffes. Lien Chan had to face questions relating to his culpability (or lack thereof) in KMT authoritarianism. Attacks against KMT candidates from the authoritarianism angle were largely unsuccessful. KMT candidates would bring up corruption and wiretapping scandals in the Li Ao administration in response. Each of the four candidates’ campaigns declared them to the winners of the debates.

The first round came in March. Lien unsurprisingly came in first place with almost 44%. His campaign was expecting a slightly better result, however. Li Ao came in second with almost over 28%. Chen Chongguang and Yang Rudai came in third and fourth place in 22% and 5% respectively. 310 Legislative Yuan seats were won by the KMT, 119 were won by the CDSP, 98 were won by the liberal Party 91 were won by the CYP, 23 were won by the NDL, 5 were won by independents, and 4 were won by the Tibet Improvement Party. 146 seats would be decided by a runoff. The KMT flipped the governorships of Fujian, Hainan, Yunnan, Guizhou, Sichuan, Xikang, and Anhui, with many more to be decided by runoff. Li Ao would need to get the overwhelming majority of Chen and Yang supporters to support him.

Presidential Election of 1990, First Round
PresidentVice-PresidentVotes
Lien Chan (KMT-Liaoning)James Soong (KMT-Hunan)217,305,876 (43.9%)
Li Ao (I-Songjiang)Lin Yang-kang (CYP-Taiwan)142,065,573 (28.7%)
Chen Chongguang (CDSP-Hubei)Song Defu (CDSP-Fujian)109,395,441 (22.1%)
Yang Rudai (NDL-Sichuan)Wang Zhaoguo (NDL-Hebei)25,740,103 (5.2%)
Others [1]Others495,002 (0.1%)


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Fortunately for Li, he received the endorsement of both Chen Chongguang and Yang Rudai. These were not enthusiastic endorsements, only that the two men considered him more tolerable than Lien. They would not do much else to help Li and some CDSP officials openly supported Lien. Polling immediately after the first round showed Lien leading Li 51-43%, but polling tightened as the weeks went on. Both candidates began to use some left-wing rhetoric in order to win over disillusioned leftist voters considering staying home. This was widely seen as insincere, however. Leftists who felt it to be their duty to vote would have to choose which candidate they viewed as the lesser of two evils. The candidates and their supporters held rallies and gave speeches throughout the country. Li Ao ended his campaign in Zhengzhou, Henan, Lin Yang-kang ended his campaign in Yuchi, Taiwan, Lien Chan ended his campaign in Shenyang, Liaoning, and James Soong ended his campaign in Shanghai, Jiangsu. On April 21, 1996, the results came in...

1: These would include write-ins and regional candidates.
 
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And in honor of the elections this month (the ones in Taiwan, not America) I will write the results in a series of election-night style posts. The time the results begin depend on if you are a:

Japanese Imperialist: 12:00 PM on Monday
Hardworking Chinese Patriot: 11:00 AM on Monday
Russian Communist (Moscow): 6:00 AM on Monday
British Imperialist: 3:00 AM on Monday
American Capitalist (East Coast): 10:00 PM on Sunday
 
Added a map of the first round results. The Split opposition meant that Lien Chan won all but 5 provinces even though he didn't get a majority in most of them.
 
Japanese Imperialist: 12:00 PM on Monday
Hardworking Chinese Patriot: 11:00 AM on Monday
Russian Communist (Moscow): 6:00 AM on Monday
British Imperialist: 3:00 AM on Monday
American Capitalist (East Coast): 10:00 PM on Sunday
I find this commentary a nice touch which adds flavor to the whole TL.
 
Hardworking Chinese Patriot: 11:00 AM on Monday
Same for (the whole of) Malaysia, now I wonder if a much richer (and whole) China as a trading partner means that (Peninsular) Malaysia (and therefore Singapore) decided to sync their time to Chinese time much earlier since the reason Malaysia decided changed their time IOTL to ensure the markets time to be the same as Hong Kong (other than the usual [BS IMO] reason to promote unity between the Peninsular and Borneo side of Malaysia).
 
Same for (the whole of) Malaysia, now I wonder if a much richer (and whole) China as a trading partner means that (Peninsular) Malaysia (and therefore Singapore) decided to sync their time to Chinese time much earlier since the reason Malaysia decided changed their time IOTL to ensure the markets time to be the same as Hong Kong (other than the usual [BS IMO] reason to promote unity between the Peninsular and Borneo side of Malaysia).
Malaysia changes the time in the 1970s TTL.
 
Election Night 1996 一
6:30 PM, Chungyuan Standard Time, Nanking, Jiangsu, China

Chen Xiaoling: Welcome back to China’s election headquarters. The first polls have closed. Now we are getting the results from six provinces; Heilongjiang, Andong, Nenjiang, Jilin, Songjiang, and Hejiang. These Northeastern provinces were Li Ao’s best provinces in the first round, and we have little doubt that they’ll be his best in the second round.

Wang Yongrui: That’s right, five of these provinces have Liberal Party governors, and the Governor of Hejiang is a member of the China Youth Party. Songjiang is Li’s home province, his hometown of Harbin erupted in celebration when he won his upset victory in 1990. None of these provinces voted for the KMT in 1990, the only province where we’re uncertain is Hejiang. Let’s hear from our reporter in Jiamusi.

Jin Meilin: Here in Jiamusi we’ve got three runoff elections, President, governor, and mayor. The KMT base seems energized here, but the exit polls we’ve conducted are showing that the city will vote for Li Ao for President and the China Youth Party at the local level.

Wang Yongrui: With over one million votes already counted, let’s take a look at the returns. Li Ao has a substantial lead, but of course Lien Chan has plenty of time to catch up. In Nenjiang, Songjiang, and Heilongjiang, Li has an over 20% lead on Lien. We won’t call Hejiang for Li just yet, but it looks like it will be in his column.

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Election Night 1996 二
7:00 PM, Chungyuan Standard Time, Nanking, Jiangsu, China

Chen Xiaoling: And now the polls have closed in China’s most populous provinces and cities. Votes are coming in from KMT strongholds in the South. Li Ao’s lead is dropping fast. Let’s hear from our reporter in Taiwan.

Cui Jiayi: I’m here in the small town of Yuchi, home to the famous Sun Moon Lake. Vice President Lin Yang-kang held a rally here today in his hometown.

[plays clip of rally]

Cui Jiayi: Both sides have a connection to Taiwan. Lien Chan’s dad, Lien Chun-tung, was born on the island. We’re expecting a very close election here.

Wang Yongrui: Let’s look at the South. Guangdong, birthplace of Sun Yat-sen, is Kuomintang country, sticking with the party through the disastrous 1992 elections. The results we’ve seen so far aren’t even close. The KMT completely dominated in the Cantonese-speaking media, and the outcome here was never really in doubt. Hainan voted the KMT back into power at the provincial level last month, and Lien unsurprisingly has the lead there. Hunan is James Soong’s home province, and stayed loyal to the KMT in 1992. Jiangxi, the home province of Wang Sheng, also voted KMT in 92. Both provinces can safely be called for the KMT. We can say the same about Zhejiang, home province of the Chiang family. Fujian is going to vote blue, but let’s keep an eye on it. The province has a strong China Democratic Socialist Party presence. Lien’s margin of victory here will help give us a good idea as to how many CDSP voters are actually voting for Li Ao.

Chen Xiaoling: Further North we’ve got a lot of CDSP strongholds, and Li is doing well there. Xingan voted for Chen Chongguang in the first round, and it looks like it is safe for Li. We’re also seeing Li winning CDSP areas of Hebei. He’s winning so far in Beiping, Shijiazhuang, and Baoding, with Tianjin being the only major city in the province that seems to be backing Lien. Memories of the 1989 protests are contributing to Li Ao’s good performance here.

Wang Yongrui: The results in the North will be interesting to see too. Liaoning will be one to watch. Lian Chan represents a district in the provincial capital of Shenyang, and that’s where he is today, at his campaign headquarters after rallying his supporters. The province is also where much of the Liberal Party’s early support was found. The Northeast is usually a weak region for the KMT, but Lien Chan might be able to change that. In nearby Liaobei, despite former President of the Legislative Yuan Liang Surong’s urging to vote KMT, Li Ao has a comfortable lead. Chahar, a stronghold for the New Democratic League, is voting overwhelmingly for Li Ao. Rehe is voting pretty heavily for Li too.

Chen Xiaoling: The central provinces are the ones I think will decide the election. And there’s no clear winner of this region yet, I think that means it’s going to be a long night.

Wang Yongrui: I agree. Jiangsu is the province I’m most interested in. I think that Lien is going to win Nanking, but Shanghai could go either way. James Soong was there today rallying KMT voters. Hubei will be interesting as well. There’s a lot of resentment against the KMT in that province because of the killing of Yuan Jia in 1989 and then Governor Peng Mengji’s crackdown on protests. Anhui is probably going to vote blue, but I think Li can make it close. Shandong will be interesting. The Kung family is still highly influential there, and they’ve donated a lot of money to the Lien campaign. Meanwhile in Henan, where a lot of their factories are located, Li Ao has the lead. He ended his campaign there in the industrial city of Hangzhou. Finally, we’ve got Shanxi, which was home to the famous warlord Yan Xishan. That province could go either way.

Chen Xiaoling: I think it’s safe to make some calls. We can confidently call Hejiang for Li. Also in Li’s column are Liaobei, Xingan, Chahar, Rehe, and I’m going to say Hebei too. Meanwhile, we can safely say that Lien has won Guangdong, Hainan, Hunan, Jiangxi, Fujian, and Zhejiang. But what matters is the overall vote, and Li Ao is still in the lead.

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Election Night 1996 三
8:00 PM, Chungyuan Standard Time, Nanking, Jiangsu, China

Wang Yongrui: We’ve got more results coming in. The polls are now closed in all of China’s major cities. Suiyuan is coming in heavily for Li, it’s a province where the KMT has been unpopular for a while. The provinces of Ningxia, Gansu, and Qinghai, once ruled by the three Northwestern Ma warlords, look like they will remain bastions of KMT support. Even though polls haven’t closed yet in parts of Qinghai, I can say with confidence that Lien will win big, after all, he won with 60% of the vote in the first round. Gansu is similarly looking like a KMT landslide. Ningxia is a lot closer, however. Yunnan seems to be returning to the KMT fold. Lien is leading in Guizhou and Sichuan, which had dumped the party in 1992. Sichuan voted against the KMT in the 1990 elections as well. Let’s see if that lead holds. Guangxi is up in the air, the province of Li Zongren and the warlords who were a thorn in Chiang Kai-shek’s side right up into the 1960s. Li Ao has a slight lead, but there are still a lot of votes to count. Li has a slight lead in Shaanxi, which is where Lien Chan was born. We have some votes coming in from Xikang, though polls are still open in part of the province.

Chen Xiaoling: I think this is a good sign for Lien Chan. If he loses Sichuan I don’t see him winning the election. We’ve got a strategist for Li Ao here. Mr. Kang, Li is only barely in the lead right now, and it looks like Lien will overtake him any minute now.

Kang Xiaoli: It’s looking like it will be close, we knew that coming into the election, but Li is going to win reelection. He’s going to sweep the Central Plains and he’ll do well in the rest of the country too. Hubei and Guangxi are going to come in for Li as well.

Chen Xiaoling: Now let’s hear from our KMT strategist, what do you think about what Kang said?

Xiong Feng: I think he’s wrong, and I have good reason to think so. The places that Li Ao will win have already voted. Western China is deep blue territory, and that’s where a lot of the remaining votes are.

Kang Xiaoli: Not very many people live in China’s last two time zones. And I wouldn’t call Xinjiang “deep blue.”

Wang Yongrui: Let’s turn our attention back east for a moment, Lien Chan is winning in Anhui, while we can call Henan for Li Ao. And look at that, Lien Chan in now leading in the overall vote.

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Election Night 1996 四
9:00 PM PM, Chungyuan Standard Time, Nanking, Jiangsu, China

Chen Xiaoling: Polls have closed in the rest of Xikang and Qinghai. Most of Tibet and Xinjiang have voted too. We can call Xikang for Lien, along with Guizhou and Sichuan. Tibet, as you may know, is ruled by the Tibet improvement Party, a KMT affiliate. Lien is leading there, just like he won it in the first round. Lien’s lead in Xinjiang is smaller, and I think Li has a chance to win there.

Wang Yongrui: I think there’s a possibility of a Li victory in Xinjiang, unlike in Tibet.


9:30 PM, Chungyuan Standard Time, Nanking, Jiangsu, China

Wang Yongrui: The last polls in Western Tibet and Xinjiang have closed. I don’t think these will make a huge difference for the final results, as only a small minority of either provinces population lives in the Kunlun time zone. Back east though, there are some interesting developments. Many precincts in Hebei, Henan, and Hubei, especially working-class areas, are breaking heavily for Li Ao. Li is also doing well in some minority villages in the South. His lead in Henan is growing, and he has exceeded expectations there.

Chen Xiaoling: Things are looking good for Li. His lead in Hubei is growing as well. I think we can say that he’ll win the province. Less than half a million votes now separate Lien and Li.

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