Monday, August 24, 2009

Promises, promises

The DPJ and LDP manifestos are here. More comment on this tomorrow.

Both parties are promising to ban "hereditary" Diet seats. "Hereditary", in this context, means seats that were held by by the candidates father[1] and then "inherited". The DJP don't say how this ban will be enforced, but the LDP say they will not "endorse[ment n]or support" candidates "within three degrees of kinship" of a retiring candidates, although only from the next general election.

Meanwhile, Yomiuri is reporting : 

The Democratic Party of Japan has featured "three icons" of the party in its campaign for the Aug. 30 House of Representatives election to convince voters that the main opposition party is well equipped to take the reins of government.

The prominent coverage given to DPJ President Yukio Hatoyama, Secretary General Katsuya Okada and Acting President Naoto Kan--the latter two also have served as party leader--stands in stark contrast to the approach adopted by the Liberal Democratic Party, many of whose candidates hope to cash in on the popularity of Health, Labor and Welfare Minister and House of Councillor member Yoichi Masuzoe to boost their campaigns. - [source]

I don't think we're going to see anything comparable to the phenomenon that was Kazuhiko Yamauchi this time round, tho'.

[1] The actual Hereditaries, the Peerage, were abolished after the second world war, and the House of Peers replaced by the elected House of Councillors. The adoption of a bicameral rather than a unicameral legislature was one of Matsumoto's few successes in the face of GHQ's "advice".

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