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SMU Prof Bridget Welsh: PAP has ‘miscalculated’ in its by-election campaign

Posted by temasektimes on May 27, 2012

The People’s Action Party has miscalculated badly in its election campaign for Hougang which enables the Workers Party to retain its stronghold easily with 62.09 percent of votes on Saturday, said Singapore Management University Professor in Political Science Bridget Welsh.

In an interview with Yahoo News, Prof Welsh criticized the tactics used by some PAP leaders which reflect badly on them:

“Some of its leaders did not come off well. Attacks reflect poorly on the attacker ultimately….The reasons are two-fold. The PAP tactics are outdated.”

PAP leaders have questioned the integrity of WP candidate Png Eng Huat who appeared to flip-flop over whether he was interested in a NCMP position in the aftermath of last year’s General Election, but it turned out to be a non-issue despite constant harping on it by the mainstream media.

“The reality is that personal attacks are not what people are interested in. Rather they want solutions for the problems they face in their daily life, from the MRT to jobs,” said Prof Welsh.

She added that it’s time to PAP rethink its approach and engage voters more through genuine and respectful dialogue.

“The PAP just is missing the point in how it engages politically, as it is not adapting to the new reality of different needs and new expectations of a more empowered electorate.”

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has earlier said the government is addressing the issues faced by Singaporeans and it will take some time for the reforms to take effect.

47 Responses to “SMU Prof Bridget Welsh: PAP has ‘miscalculated’ in its by-election campaign”

  1. Jacob said

    We’ll miss you, prof.

  2. Singaporean said

    DPM Teo lost the most. He lost his credibility and respect from the people of Singapore, not only from Hougang but also from all over. Bad move for him.

  3. I used to respect him very much before this BE.

  4. Cancer said

    DPM Teo’s emotions got over him after the lost of Hougang and I believe he must have regretted what he had said about asking LTK to sue him. Too bad what’s done cannot be undone.

    • ANGRY Bird said

      People who think they are high & almighty & arrogant, will never regret what they say or do. One day he’ll meet his fate – boot out of cabinet.

  5. Blood suckers said

    Well said. Exactly to the point.

    No one is interested whether Png is interested in NCMP or not. Take low blows and cheap shots. Continue like this. I encourage. Then I will pop my champagne when the white moronic dogs loses their majority.

    National issues will take some time to implement? What the fuck you talking? One year has past and policies concerning national issues cannot be implement on time? What kind of KPI you set? I dont think you all deserve the salary and bonus.

    Fucking white moronic dogs.

  6. just curious said

    small issues like a primary school kid :”teacher you see, he pinched me”

  7. furmader said

    Briget Welsh is talking rubbish. Behind the solutions to problems are people, in particular, the leader. If this person is not of good character, he/she will not be able to provide good solutions. Such leader would even create problems rather than solutions.

    If only the PAP had dug into the flings of YSL before the last GE and attacked him with it, the PAP would have won the election then and there would not be any by-election.

    Did she read the postings of website like TRE? Did she attend the rallies of the WP? The supporters of WP made personal attack on anyone who to criticize the WP in the slightest of way. They do it in the foulest manner, with extreme profanities and vulgarities.

    If she does not believe it, try criticizing the Opposition, in particular, the WP.

    • Principia said

      “If this person is not of good character, he/she will not be able to provide good solutions.”
      You are talking rubbish. Character has got nothing to do with being able to provide good solutions… that is ability, a totally unrelated trait… i.e. a high achiever can be lacking in “character”, and a low achiever can be full of it. So don’t begin by “Briget Welsh is talking rubbish”, when the first statement you make is trash.

      “Such leader would even create problems rather than solutions.”
      Reminds me of Lee Jr.

      “If only the PAP had dug into the flings of YSL before the last GE and attacked him with it, the PAP would have won the election then and there would not be any by-election.”
      So you will vote in an incompetent low achiever full of “character” (those that can create lots of problems), right? Tells a lot about yourself.

      “Did she read the postings of website like TRE? Did she attend the rallies of the WP? The supporters of WP made personal attack on anyone who to criticize the WP in the slightest of way. They do it in the foulest manner, with extreme profanities and vulgarities.”
      And what if she does? What if she did attend? What is it you are trying to say?

      “If she does not believe it, try criticizing the Opposition, in particular, the WP.”
      And your point is?

    • Captain said

      And the problems we are facing now, is because of people like you who constantly believes that the PAP will give you a better life, put aside your unjustified prejudice, and understand that our government is screwed.

      And if only, i would have been a billionaire, IF ONLY. the point is, stop living in the world of ‘if only’, get a life and face reality.

      If you dont believe it, try criticizing the PAP, in particular, the PM.

    • The "Silent" Majority said

      So, Furmader, if Briget Welsh is talking rubbish, what, according to you, would be the reason(s) for the PAP losing 62% of the votes at this by-election?

    • Leo said

      This is what I called Disgusting. Should the parties spend their times digging out each other’s closets? We citizens select MPs and ministers based on the party’s mandate and their credibility.

      If a party says ‘one’ before election and did ‘two’ after the election, what would you think? If the MPs and ministers spend their time thinking of their pockets without bothering to listen to the citizens’ voice, what do you think?

    • Zam said

      You are an idiot

    • Henry said

      Furmader … your views are noted. The Prof is actually helping PAP … it is not so much about the character problem … PAP needs to change its tactics – that’s the key message. I hope our PAP leaders are reading the correct message. If readers are blinded by the emotional distractions, then the leaders cannot find the solutions …

  8. The Gardener said

    Teo ChicKen has proven he is truly not worth the money spent.
    He has been leeching off us achieving nothing. Sack the DPM!!!

  9. bringiton said

    DPM Teo should stand in hougang for a real election

  10. Angel said

    I used to vote for PAP- even for the last election. Recently, something happened to the residents of blk 860, 861 woodlands , and blk 10 and 11 Jalan Batu. The PAP wanted to carry out a big project without consulting the affected residents. When question by residents to their respective MP why they were not being consulted, both MP apologies. We will wait and see whether they are going to bulldoze the project after hearing the residents concern. A test to see whether they are really listening, or pretend to show concern.

    • All be good said

      Serve you right, regret and repent till next GE.

    • ANGRY Bird said

      after all these decades of wayang, do you still believe them? a leopard will never change its spots.

    • Henry said

      Let’s be fair to Angel … give a chance to reflect and make the right decision next time round. In any case, hope the project turns out more consultative … I know how it feels like to be “bulldoze” for more than half century …

    • Mel said

      Too late my friend, they would have neutralized all the FTs to become citizens and they will give PAP the votes.

  11. Ron said

    According to a PAP grass-root leader, the PAP got quite a shock at the last electons However, he also felt that they are not listening or changing enough. Perhaps that sums up the old style PAP politics. Attack the character of the candidate like they did to CSJ. Demolish the opposition candidate. Challenge them to lawsuits, etc.

    Those tactics are backfiring. The PAP has to demonstrate that all Singapore will be managed well and not to strangle Opposition strong-hold. HG has just proven that they will put up with being deprived, being less developed than other areas. They will bear with the oppression. And perhaps other wards will also rise up and say “Enough is enough. Out with these arrogant bastards”

    PAP be warned. You have the next four years to reflect on the losses and redeem your popularity. If handled well, the PAP is still the party of choice. Carry on as you are now, you become the Pariah of Choice.

  12. haha365 said

    牛皮越吹越大,本事越来越少;脾气越来越大,才气越来越少;胆量越来越大,度量越来越少;玩劲越来越大,干劲越来越少;权力越来越大,威信越来越小;架子越来越大,人格越来越小。

  13. Descended said

    Exactly well said

  14. 龙的传人 said

    昨天晚上我哭泣,可怜的亜朱歹命的亜朱。他为后港付出一切但没有的到回报!我是多么的痛心疾首,为理想为服务民众辞职高薪,无怨无悔的付出多少青春年少!一个人究竟有多少个五年?希望来届大选他能派来集选区。让他服务民众的热情能延续一去。必竟当年也有议员落马后派遣来集选区,如亜生、亜豪、亜山。朱先生绝对是一个热心服务民众的好议员,所以要善于用人才。经过这次我会更加支持政府,你们的任何决定我会全心全力支持!加油我们的敬爱总理李显龙先生。

    • lol said

      难道为人民服务就一定要当上国会议员才可以?如果要当上后港国会议员,就去加入工人党,以他的经验和热诚,工人党一定会让他参选,而他一定高票当选!!难道在在工人党就不能为后港居民服务吗?

    • future direction for PAP said

      Future Direction for PAP:

      Do not mix party with nation. A party is appointed to run the nation, but a nation may not run by only one party. More heads are better than one head. Look at communist country like China, they had transformed to be more “democratic” and not “autocratic” now. Prime minister or Chairman will step now after 10 years of ruling, and give way to new leadership.

      Any citizen could contribute to his nation, and not necessary have to be in the party. Mother Teresa had done her contribution and she is not in politics. Philosopher like Kongzi had contributed to education significantly and not a politician.

      A good party look for his nation future, and not just his party future. Nation future is to take care of his citizens and not just his party, make his citizens growth and not just his party growth, make his citizens happy and not only his party happy, PAP had to change her mind set into this direction.

  15. evil said

    pap has lost the mandate to govern

    going by this result of the by election

    dont be self deceiving by claiming that this result do not reflect the rest of Singapore

    this episode retell the same story of Election commission of Malaysia who claim that he does not

    believe the results of the survey taken on the credibility of the commission

    hougang’s results will be translated island wide

    if pap dare to call another by election in marine parade, joo chiat, tampines, or any ward

    • lol said

      Yup, I think they should, for those wet market stalls, only one bidder then they say the bid not competitive, and call for re-bid. How about those walk over areas? Shouldn’t it do the same?

  16. voice of the people said

    teo chee hen please step down. it is disgraceful. i dont want this kind of leader.

  17. Mike Lum said

    It’s awkward to have a foreigner comment on our political affairs. I also can make these type of comments as a afterword. Why don’t you warn the PAP before voting commences? It’s all water under the bridge and you are analyzing with the benefit of hindsight.

  18. Pokemon said

    If the pap still continue to let in more foreigners, they will piss off more Singaporeans. They way they allow sun xu to remain in spore dispite angering hundreds of thousands Sporeans is just the beginning hey aren’t respecting and listening to the ppl.

  19. watcher's point of view said

    There is a need to stay relevant. Appeal to the hearts of the people, stay relevant instead of talkin top down…the fundamentals have been forgotten. We are all very tired of the same old thing. A Good refreshing change must come from the top. Where do you see such natural National Education where people gathered and cheered for the sake of their own country and for their nation’s interest? today in HG….no bus loads of retirees nor students nor uniformed men who were forced to attend some rally. We are very tired and we know your every trick because human resource is the only thing that we may have, so perhaps this idea has shot itself into its own foot…..Today, just the everyday Singaporeans in general who came at their own free will to cheer…. national education at its best.
    Can you see? Isn’t it obvious Mr government…..it is so simple….appeal to the hearts of Singaporeans, if not you will be out soon,- for the good of Singapore, and sanity of the whole population and our children

  20. spotlessleopard said

    PAP still using threats, still talking down to the People ….they hear but do not listen..they continue to do what they want to do…i predict there will be a change in GE2016……For the first time in 50 years there is a great likelihood that PAP will be sitting on Opposition Benches in Parliament……SERVES THEM RIGHT….for misusing and abusing HDB, PA, Town Councils, etc.

  21. JOhn said

    DPeeM teo STINKS ! ! !
    Perhaps he is already too old and ripe to step down for the younger ministers.
    Hope they will do more smear campaigns and character assassinations in the futures
    These will then cause them more votes and losses in future elections.
    YEAH ! Keep up the no good work DPeeM teo ! ! !

  22. After the PM’s expressed regret, apology and a promise for fairer elections, the people continue to witness dirty underhand tactics to discredit the Opposition. Can we trust the PAP ever again?

  23. icer said

    Agree with the Prof. Their tactics are really lousy but they can continue using the same method and let’s see what happens in 2016. And shame to MSM for biased reporting.

  24. embark emeritus said

    The behaviour of DPM Teo reflects his “born-with-a silver spoon in his mouth” background being scion of the OCBC family and fast tracked as a scholar through the military (never had command of a ship in peacetime let alone war conditions) and political ranks without ever having to get his hands dirty.

    He has no experience with the commercial realities of listening to the “voice of the customer” to gain business and market share, hence will never heed the “voice of the constituents”. He has insulated himself behind his coterie of advisers and hangers-on and will liberally rely on lawyers and media professionals to do his dirty work.

    This seems to be the trend with many of the MIWs who rely heavily on scholars who have not been battle hardened in the “real” world. This is the kind of competition that I am sure the Workers Party will look forward to cross swords with in 2016!

    Congratulations to WP in Hougang and may you win more seats in parliament in 2016!

  25. hOt said

    trUly & absolUtely DISAPPOINTED with comments made by DPM teo during this BE. Does the man knows what he is saying or d
    Saying out of ……

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