Monday, September 25, 2006

First call

For the Sanyaku:

Secretary General - Nakagawa Hidenao (Kaching!)

Chairman of the General Council - Niwa Yūya

Chairman of the Policy Research Council - Nakagawa Shōichi

Well, one of out of three is not too bad. With Nakagawa Hidenao as kanjichō, no one will be losing his head to dentition.

I guessed that a faction leader had to be in charge of the General Council. It turned out to be Niwa rather than Tsushima.

Does Niwa's taking over the sōmukaichō post doom faction underling Shiozaki Yasuhisa's chances of getting a power post?

I had picked Nakagawa Shōichi to be the point man for pre-election economic support policy through an appointment to the MLIT. Instead, Nakagawa is going to be in charge of the whole policy shebang.

I did get right the need for a sitting Cabinet minister in the policy post, both in order to take responsibility for the current policy mix and to forestall embarrassing swings in policy stance.

Nakagawa Shōichi is coming straight of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. His appointment to the post of seichōkaichō is a riposte to Democratic Party leader Ozawa Ichiro's blunt wooing of the rural and economic loser vote.

All these appointments--even and especially the election of Abe Shinzō as LDP president--are an attempt to forge a team capable of defending the LDP's backside in the July 2007 House of Councillors elections.

Look for the possibility that the minor factions get spikes driven through their hearts tomorrow.

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