Sunday, August 14, 2011

Why Not A Grand Coalition?

Noda Yoshihiko, whose bid for being the "economic conservative policy wonk" candidate for leader of the Democratic Party of Japan has already crowded out the potential candidacies of Maehara Seiji, Sengoku Yoshito and Edano Yukio (ja), has said he would seek to form a cabinet of national salvation, seemingly with ministers from the DPJ, the Liberal Democratic Party and the New Komeito.
Noda eyes grand coalition
The Yomiuri Shimbun

Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda, considered a leading candidate to replace Naoto Kan as prime minister, said Saturday he will launch a "national salvation cabinet" by formulating a grand coalition with major opposition parties if he takes the reins of government.

Appearing on a TV Tokyo program Saturday morning, Noda reiterated his resolve to run in the next presidential election of the Democratic Party of Japan. The election will be held after Kan announces his resignation from the premiership, probably later this month.

Noda said that if he becomes DPJ president, he will strive to establish a grand coalition with two major opposition parties, the Liberal Democratic Party and New Komeito. Consequently, debate in the forthcoming DPJ presidential race will likely focus on how to secure cooperation between the ruling and opposition camps, analysts said.

"I believe now is the time for the ruling and opposition parties to have a heart-to-heart talk to establish a national salvation cabinet," Noda said.

"Because we can't do what the government needs to do without a coalition, I think I'll have to begin [if elected DPJ president] by bowing my head before opposition members to seek their cooperation, as if I was knocking on someone's front door to make a request," he said...

One teensy-weensy little problem with this plan -- of what certainly must be a gamut of them: a lot of DPJ legislators sit in the district seats once occupied by LDP members of the Diet, members who came back from the dead because they had their names on the LDP's proportional seat list (ja). It is hard to imagine that these resurrected members of the LDP will be holding the hands of the DPJ members who ousted them from their cushy district seats. What will these proportional seat LDP legislators do, come the next House of Representatives election? Graciously abstain from running in the district in deference to the incumbent DPJ candidate?

Might happen...but that would mean realignment, wouldn't it?


Spike said...

Noda was as we know viewed for a while as the shoo-in candidate--one of my very well connected Japanese colleagues was certain he would be elected--but that was a month ago. Noda's two policy planks--a grand coalition and the consumption tax hike--are going down like a lead balloon with the demotic media, at least. The headline in one of the evening rags tonight was 大連立増税許すな. Any color on where the Wizard of Oz and Hato-chan stand on the these two issues--I should know more but life's too short. My ear-to-the-ground Nagatacho guy says the race is wide open, 本命不在.
Anyway, thank you for a fine blog and far superior insight than Apotanampanman.

MTC said...

Spike -

I set to write a "Has Noda Already Peaked?" post but the man has hit the accelerator so hard the thought has already lost its freshness.