Friday, December 09, 2022

Japan’s government retains majority in upper house

Status: 07/11/2022 01:45 AM

Japan has elected a new House of Lords amid the shock of the assassination of former Prime Minister Abe. Abe’s governing party, the LDP, achieved an absolute majority without its coalition partner.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s ruling party won the election to the Upper House in Japan. His Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) secured an absolute majority in the second house of parliament even without its coalition partner Komito, as Japanese media reported on Monday after all votes were counted.

The ruling party won 63 of the 125 seats available – and thus received more votes than expected before the assassination of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. This is the best result for LDP in years. Komito got 13 seats.

The coalition partners already have 70 mandates in the Upper House which were not up for election this time. Half the mandate is renewed every three years. The upper house will have 248 seats.

Elections after the murderous massacre

The election came in the wake of an assassination attempt on former Prime Minister Abe. Longtime heads of government and influential politicians belonged to the LDP, as did his disciple Kishida. He was shot on the street two days back during election campaign and was later declared brought dead at the hospital.

Abe’s tragic death now clearly means that his party got more votes than expected anyway. The gains are so great that a constitutional change seems possible, which Abe also advocated: the abolition of the so-called peace clause, which forbids Japan from participating in wars.

Kishida’s position of power strengthened

A victory would pave the way for the government coalition to increase the defense budget and implement projects such as revamping some nuclear power plants.

The election victory should strengthen the position of power for Kishida, who has only been in office for nine months, at a time when Japan’s economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic is threatened by rising energy and food prices. His LDP party also wants a sharp increase in military spending, given the Russian invasion of Ukraine and China’s campaign for power.

With inputs from Silke Dietrich, ARD Studio New Delhi

After the death of Shinzo Abe – the ruling party in Japan won the election

Silke Dietrich, ARD New Delhi, 10.7.2022 3:14 PM

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