Addressing 6,000 PAP members on Sunday, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who is the party's secretary-general, framed what was at stake at the next election. Here is an extract of his remarks:
"The next GE is going to be a deadly serious fight. It will be about who forms the government, not how many seats the opposition gets.
It will be about whether we continue to have a First World Government, not about a so-called First World Parliament. Every seat - every GRC, every SMC - will be contested. Every seat, every contest, will be a national contest, not a local one. Every seat is a general election, not a by-election.
There are different voices now, louder voices, in our society and, especially, in the social media. Some mean well, and we must engage with them and persuade them to make common cause with us. Others try to mislead voters, and they will lead Singapore into trouble, and those we have to counter, expose and defeat. The PAP must do that.
Only the PAP is bringing different groups together. Only the PAP is solving problems and planning for the future. Only the PAP is putting forth a vision, a road map, for Singapore...
The Opposition does not see any duty to bring people together, solve problems and plan for the future. Far from it. The fewer the problems, the worse their prospects.
The only fear is that there is no turmoil under the heaven.
So every time we put out a popular policy, they say 'Do More'.
But they do not say 'How'. They do not say money from 'where'. They do not say who they are going to 'take from', in order to 'give more'.
And there's no vision because they say they cannot form the government, so no need for vision!
In fact, they dare not say that not because they cannot form the government, but because they are trying to avoid answering hard questions until well after they get elected; maybe even after then, they will waffle."
This article was first published on December 10, 2014.
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