Japan’s ruling coalition retains a supermajority in snap election

Japan’s ruling coalition retains a supermajority in snap election

LIKE him or, as some Japanese do after five years in office, loathe him, Shinzo Abe has proved a savvy political operator. Having already led his Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) to four successive electoral victories, the Japanese prime minister risked bringing an end to his long winning streak when he decided last month to dissolve the lower house of the Diet (parliament) 14 months early.

Mr Abe’s reputation had recently suffered as a result of his alleged links to two scandals (in which he denies any involvement). Right after he announced the snap poll, the governor of Tokyo, Yuriko Koike, formed a new political party that looked as if it might pose a serious challenge. Instead, Mr Abe won a big victory in the election on October 22nd. He will probably remain four more years at the country’s helm. Serving only half of this new term would make him modern Japan’s longest-serving prime minister.

The LDP took 284 of the 465 seats contested, the same number that it held...Continue reading

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