When the new law was introduced, the government hoped that the votes of Korean expatriates would help to cancel out the troubling number of people who have been voting for 'progressive' parties and ideas in recent years, since research shows that Korean citizens outside Korea tend to develop more nationalistic views. But it recently became apparent, according to the head of the National Assembly's Special Committee on Political Reform, that under the new law some 50,000 pro-Pyongyang Koreans living in Japan may be able to vote in the general and presidential elections next year.
Legal experts say that since South Korean laws pertaining to the post-war division of the country and the status of defectors essentially recognize North Koreans as Republic of Korean citizens, this opens the way for an estimated 18 million pro-Pyongyang Koreans living in the North to also vote in the Southern elections. Assuming they vote as a block, and given the increasingly poor and fractured turnout in support of the established South Korean parties, the political projection would point to a landslide win for current North Korean leader Kim Jong-il, if he decided to stand for President.
Politicians in the South Korean capital were initially said to be unconcerned by the possibility of Kim Jong-il running for President, with one senior minister describing it as being "highly unlikely he would take advantage of the South in this way". But with all access to North Korean media banned across South Korea, except for Dokdo which for historical reasons falls outside the scope of Seoul's tough censorship laws, it appears that most politicians in the capital have been unaware that the North Korean leader has already formed an exploratory committee, and begun political fundraising in South Korea - with many of those same politicians becoming unwitting donors.
Some political analysts say Kim Jong-il's landslide victory in South Korea's presidential election could be even larger than expected. In addition to the 18 million pro-Kim voters living in North Korea, the Seoul-based Hankyoreh newspaper has an estimated core readership of 60,000, and as it is believed that one of Kim Jong-il's first policies as South Korea's president will be to increase the number of half-naked dancing teenage girls outside major electrical stores, he seems sure to win the endorsement of KASA - the Korean Association of Sex Attackers, bringing his potential support base up to 21 million.
Politicians and constitutional experts are said to be locked in emergency session in Seoul this week, trying to find a solution to the pro-Pyongyang block electing Kim Jong-il as South Korea’s next democratically-elected president. But the head of the National Assembly's Special Committee painted a bleak picture yesterday, telling reporters that there is no legal way to stop pro-Pyongyang expatriate Koreans from voting, because now that the law has been passed their political rights also have to be guaranteed.
Pro-N.Korean Expats in Japan Could Vote in S.Korean Elections
Candidates win 100% approval in NK local elections
Naked girls, caviar and dog stew - Kim Jong-Il lives it up
Sex Attackers Welcome Reassertion of Legal Protection
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