Tokyo Gubernatorial Election – Political turmoil around the corner?
The upcoming Tokyo Gubernatorial race is definitely the topic of the Day in Nagata-cho. Media reports about former PM Hosokawa possibly teaming up with former PM Koizumi on an anti-nuclear ticket has stirred a lot of discussions within the political parties. The Nikkei Shimbun reports that . Hosokawa, who has been actively voicing his feeling against nuclear power after the March 11 earthquake in 2011, plans to announce his bid after securing gaining support from former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi who lately has come out also as anti-nuclear.
Two of Japan’s most popular political figures joining forces like this risks putting Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) in a difficult position. The Tokyo chapter of LDP has just decided to support the candidacy of Former Minister of Health and Welfare, Yoichi Masuzoe, and was counting on gaining the support also from the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ). A new partnership between Hosokawa and Koizumi risks however to put the DPJ in the camp of Hosokawa and turn the election into a referendum on nuclear power, a discussion which the Abe administration this far has been able to suppress and avoid.