Maehara Seiji has just finished his speech. He was sweating so much his lips glittered -- meaning he forgot his handkerchief. However, he bulled through a zinger of a speech, full of smart ideas and classic Democratic Party of Japan talking points. Bravely, he touched on the black marks his his record: his infamous faked email brouhaha and the illegal campaign contributions by Japanese permanent residents with Korean citizenship. Somehow, his eyes looked sad, as if he knows that Finance Minister Noda Yoshihiko has amassed enough floating votes to surpass him in the initial round of voting.
Mabuchi Sumio is now speaking and it is clear he is not ready for prime time. He may indeed never be. He is talking about the election of Kakuei Tanaka as head of the LDP, as if he choose a topic that could turn off a group of Democratic party members more. Why he is choosing also to wax nostalgic about the 1960s and 70s challenges the imagination. Amaterasu knows what the 20 legislators who signed his application to be a candidate are feeling right now. Most likely they are studying their tips of their shoes with desperate concentration.