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SEOUL - South Korea's ruling Saenuri Party on Wednesday elected an economic expert with close ties to the party chairwoman as its new floor leader.
Lee Hahn-koo, 67, defeated rival Nam Kyung-pil in a poll, becoming the floor leader of the conservative party in the incoming parliament.
He is a member of a think tank for interim Saenuri Party leader Park Geun-hye, the front-runner on the conservative ticket for the December presidential race.
Often dubbed an "economics tutor" for Park, Lee was recently re-elected into parliament with a pledge to help Park become the country's next president.
Park, who is yet to officially declare herself a presidential candidate, is expected to step down as party head following a convention next week.