South Korea, more formally known as the Republic of Korea, held its presidential election on March 9. Under South Korea’s law, all citizens over the age of 18 have the right to vote. Although a non-citizen registered in the relevant local constituency who has had a resident visa for three years or more has the right to vote in local elections, such residents cannot vote for the President.
The leading contenders for the office going into the polling date were generally considered to be: Lee Jae-myung, of the Democratic Party, and Yoon Suyk-yeol, of the People Power Party.
Both major parties are capitalistic in their economic policies. The Democratic Party presses for a more generous safety net than its opposition; the People Power Party complains that Democratic Party regulatory policies ties the hands of employer/managers, to the detriment of the public interest.
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Yoon Suyk-yeol of the PPP prevailed in a close count. In a concession speech the following day, Lee Jae-myung acknowledged the sharp polarization of opinion in the country. “I sincerely ask the president-elect to lead the country over the divide and conflict and open an era of unity and harmony,” he said.