South Korea Elects Woman as President
Park Geun-hye the conservative Saenuri Party candidate made history by being elected as the first female president in South Korea after she defeated Moon Jae-in her liberal rival from the Democratic United Party. Her win was by several percentage points.
She is a five-term lawmaker and the daughter of a former dictator. She vowed to make good on all of her promises that she made while on the campaign trail.
Park said she would be opening a new era in the country that would allow everyone’s dreams to become a reality. She left the stage to loud cheers from her supporters after appearing to accept the win.
At the headquarters of the Democratic United Party, people were subdued when Jae-in conceded the election. He apologized to his supporters and called the election defeat his fault and not the failure of those who had hoped for new politics. He also took the time to congratulate the new president elect.
The voter turnout for the election was 76% and surpassed the voting of the two previous elections for the president despite there being temperatures that were sub freezing throughout the entire country.
Voters went to the polls in winter clothing and moved their feet and legs in an attempt to remain warm while standing in long voter lines at the many polling stations.
Park, 60, will take office on February 25 and will be the second time she has lived in the Blue presidential house. She lived there during the 1970s as the acting first lady after a gunman supported by North Korea assassinated her mother while her father was in power.