Bareun Party picks first head
SEOUL, Jan. 23 (Yonhap) -- The soon-to-be Bareun Party, made up of lawmakers that bolted from the ruling Saenuri Party, designated Rep. Choung Byoung-gug as its chief on Monday, ahead of its official launch later this week.
The party spun off from Saenuri last month amid the deepening factional feud sparked by the impeachment of President Park Geun-hye. The conservative splinter party will officially set sail on Tuesday.
The new conservative party will start with 31 lawmakers, as Rep. Park Soon-ja of Saenuri also decided to join, increasing the number of seats by one.
The Bareun Party also named seven members of its decision-making Supreme Council in a move to finalize its preparation for its official political debut.
The party said it has not yet decided on details on its primary to pick a presidential candidate. South Korea may hold its next presidential election earlier in 2017 instead of December, if Park's ouster is approved by the Constitutional Court.
Rep. Yoo Seong-min and Gyeonggi Gov. Nam Kyung-pil are some of the potential presidential hopefuls from the Bareun Party.
Rep. Choung Byoung-gug, head of the planned Bareun Party (Yonhap)