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Japan to hold general elections


Japan to hold general elections

Japan general elections
Photo: Kyodo

Japan will hold elections today for the 465 seats of the country’s House of Representatives.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s ruling Centre-Right Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) currently holds 276 seats and governs in a coalition with a nationalist minor party, Komeito, which holds 29 seats, creating an overwhelming majority of 305 seats.

Polls show the LDP are favourites to win enough seats to form a coalition but could lose their majority. Unlike in 2017, when the main opposition parties competed against each other, the current opposition has consolidated. The main center-left standard-bearer is now the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan (CDPJ) after merging with the Democratic Party and the Social Democratic Party and various independents. Furthermore, the CDPJ has agreed on a common policy platform with multiple other opposition parties.

Expect a stronger showing from the opposition—especially after last week’s loss of the LDP’s Shizuoka Upper House seat—which suggests that the LDP may win a reduced majority. However, Kishida’s attempt to steer the party away from Abenomics with a greater social investment focus will be dealt a major blow if the LDP is reduced to a minority government, forcing reliance on Komeito’s smaller-government economic agenda.

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