Taiwan’s President Tsai ing-wen called for a quiet Thursday when the Democratic island, which was strongly committed to the re-election of President Donald Trump, woke up to see the Democratic candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden moving closer to the White House.
In a rare statement that directly addressed the issue of U.S.-Taiwan relations, Tsai called America an “important ally” and tried to reassure the public that her government maintained close ties with both the Republican and Democratic parties.
She insisted that support for Taiwan was now “non-partisan” and “mainstream” in the United States and vowed to cooperate with any candidate elected to office.
Faced with escalating military pressure from China since her election, Tsai was strengthened by the unusually strong support of the Trump administration, which has enforced its anti-China policy by authorizing 10 arms deals with Taipei since 2017.
As a result, President Trump enjoys the overwhelming support of Taiwan’s 23 million-strong population, especially the youth.
While Tsai and other high-ranking government officials have always maintained their neutrality in the U.S. elections, legislators from Tsai’s Democratic Progress Party have been placed under surveillance in the Oval Office because of their seemingly obvious support for the incumbent.
When the Taiwanese woke up to find that Trump’s early lead was slowly narrowing amid a surge of votes for former Vice President Biden, Taiwan’s president tried to alleviate the panic in the country.
“The United States is an important ally of Taiwan, and I know that everyone follows the U.S. presidential election,” Tsai wrote on Facebook, according to a translation by Washington Newsday.
“The government will continue to monitor the election before the results are announced,” she said, “We are closely monitoring the situation in the Taiwan Strait and staying in close contact with neighboring countries to jointly maintain peace and stability in the region.
Tsai promised to maintain a stable economic environment on the island by ensuring the stability of the country’s stock market.
“Taiwan has always maintained close relations with the U.S. government, with both houses of Congress, the two main political parties, think tanks and citizens’ groups,” she assured her supporters.
She added: “Whatever the outcome of the election, these interactions will not change. We will continue to deepen the relationship between Taiwan and the United States on this existing basis”.
“Recently, many favorable bills and resolutions in both the Senate and the House of Representatives have received cross-party support, including [Tuesday’s] arms sale,” she noted. “Although there will be some seat changes in both houses of Congress after the election, cross-party support for Taiwan will not diminish.
Tsai, who described American-Taiwanese relations as “mutually beneficial”, said she was confident that support for Taiwan was “already a general public opinion” and a “cross-party consensus.
“We are continuing to work on this basis to strengthen American public support for Taiwan,” she wrote.