Anchor : Wednesday’s local elections and parliamentary by-elections ended without any unexpected twists. As predicted by exit polls, the ruling Democratic Party claimed a landslide victory. In the final tally, the ruling party won 14 out of the 17 posts for mayors and provincial governors including Seoul mayor and Gyeonggi Governor, and eleven out of the 12 empty seats in the legislative by-elections. Leaders of key conservative parties resigned Thursday.
Our Hong Suhryung has this report.


[Sound bite : Liberty Korea Party Chairman Hong Joon-pyo (Korean)]
"As of today, I resign from the post. I hope that party officials join hands to make the LKP become a party that can regain public trust. Thank you"

After a crushing defeat at the June 13th local elections, Chairman Hong Joon-pyo of the main opposition Liberty Korea Party(LKP) stepped down. 

[Sound bite : Liberty Korea Party Chairman Hong Joon-pyo (Korean)]
"We suffered a crushing defeat and the entire nation has been lost [to the other side.] This is all my fault and all responsibilities fall on me. I respect the people's choice. I thank all party members and candidates for your hard work. As of today, I resign from my post. " 
The main opposition party suffered a humiliating defeat, only winning the Daegu mayoral and North Gyeongsang gubernatorial posts, both traditionally conservative strongholds. 

The LKP added one additional parliamentary seat but that's now 17 seats less than the ruling party. 

The minor conservative Bareunmirae Party also struggled, winning in only 20 minor races. Worse yet, Seoul mayoral candidate Ahn Cheol-soo finished only third.

[Sound bite : Bareunmirae Party Co-Chairman Yoo Seong-min (Korean)]
"Today, I step down from co-chairman of the Bareunmirae Party. I solemnly accept the people's choices and resign to take responsibility for the election defeat."

The party’s co-chairman Yoo Seong-min resigned from leadership.

[Sound bite : Bareunmirae Party Co-Chairman Yoo Seong-min (Korean)]
"I will ponder upon a new vision and policies for the Republic of Korea. I will try to come up with ways to revive the completely collapsed conservative politics. I devoted myself to efforts to have a reformist conservatism take root in South Korean politics, but failed to meet people’s expectations." 

The elections proved a tremendous endorsement for President Moon Jae-in, who has been enjoying approval ratings of more than 70 percent in the latest poll.
The Democratic Party’s chairwoman Choo Mi-ae said that the party will do its best to return the strong support of the voters. 

With the help of minor progressive parties and independent lawmakers, the liberal camp can now exercise the majority power in the 300-member parliament.
Hong Suhryung, KBS World Radio News.