Japan: An Emerging Threat to the Ruling Party

Jul 3, 2017 | 21:03 GMT

The long-awaited Tokyo municipal elections held July 2 delivered an unprecedented local defeat of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) by emerging political player, the Tokyo Residents First party. The election boosted the Tokyo Residents First's presence in the Tokyo assembly from 6 seats to 49. Now, with only 23 seats in the local assembly, the ruling party has even fewer than the 38 lawmakers it had following a similar defeat in August 2009. That defeat presaged the LDP's earthshaking 2009-2012 loss of national power. Though the municipal loss is certainly a blow to the LDP and to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, the ruling party has a great deal of leeway in managing this crisis....

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