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(1/n) THREAD: Setting the stage for the #TaiwanElection—happening right now!

By the #s: The big race is between Tsai Ing-wen (bottom bar) & Han Kuo-yu (middle bar)

Red: Unify w/ #China
Green: Independence
Light grey: Status Quo
Dark grey: Depends
Black: Don‘t Know

Source later
(2/n) For #Taiwan2020 the most important issue people are voting on is how #Taiwan is to relate to mainland #China.

The top bar in this graph is overall sentiment of the Taiwanese people. As you can see, the vast, vast majority favor either Status Quo or Independence from China
(3/n) You can also see that the positions of the two presidential candidates are *dramatically* different.

And as you'll learn if you watch this remarkable election primer with Lev Nachman @lnachman32, the political reality is also a lot more nuanced.
@lnachman32 (4/n) Here's what's most important to incumbent president Tsai Ing-wen's supporters (top to bottom of graph):

1: Democracy and freedom (53.2%!)
2: Freedom and equality (12.9%)
3: Economic development and democracy
4: Democracy and equality
5: Economic development and equality
@lnachman32 (5/n) Note that, looking back at that first graph, that vast majority of Tsai's supporters want #Taiwan independence. But, if you listen to the interview with Lev, you'll learn her political position is "Status Quo." Anyone guess why?

Hint: It has to do with these guys 👇👇👇
@lnachman32 (6/n) That's of course the leadership of the mainland Chinese communist party, #CCP. These folks are doing everything they can to influence the election outcome.
Read details in this excellent piece by our #TaiwanElection correspondent Frank Fang @HwaiDer:
@lnachman32 @HwaiDer (7/n) In Frank's piece, @JMichaelCole1, an expert on Chinese influence operations in #Taiwan, tells of “large volumes of disinformation about Taiwan’s economy… [that] depict China as the solution to all their economic ills,” as well as media playing a role in polarizing society.
@lnachman32 @HwaiDer @JMichaelCole1 (8/n) The Chinese communist party is pushing an idea of "one country, two systems" on Taiwan.

But that's not working out too well over in #HongKong.

As you might expect, the people of #Taiwan have been watching the #HongKongProtesters closely.
@lnachman32 @HwaiDer @JMichaelCole1 (9/n) Credit to @poscwty & @FangYu_80168's work, where all these graphs are taken from & @lnachman32 for pointing there:

So how will all this work out? You can see election results on this handy dandy website, updated in real time:
@lnachman32 @HwaiDer @JMichaelCole1 @poscwty @FangYu_80168 (10/end) See the #Taiwan2020 election results updated live with a map!

This #TaiwanElection really is a big deal—beyond the Taiwanese people being able to choose a #CCP-free future—as it, along with #HongKong, plays the role of canary in a coal mine.
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