. . . Political Situation - INFO 02 June

[ . BACK to TOP of this BLOG. ]

SPECIAL : The Political Situation


Since May 2011 and maybe even before that, the opposition is trying hard to oust prime minister Kan, even on his trip to Europe they kept going ...

Most of the population does not want a change of government right now, though.

This political infight at a time when unity and support for the people of Tohoku is needed most of all is quite sad to observe.

The main source of the bulletins is from
source : NHK world news .

Here I collect updates of the development.
Since this is going to take more time than I envisaged, it will come in more parts.

Prime Minister Naoto Kan 菅直人

May 2011 till Sunday, June 5, 2011
. The Political Situation - PART 1 .

July, 01, 2011 till
. The Political Situation - PART 3 .


Monday, June 06, 2011

Okada proposes grand coalition for disaster relief
Katsuya Okada 岡田克也
Nobuteru Ishihara 石原伸晃
dairenritsu 大連立 grand coalition, grand alliance

and who will be prime minister after Kan?

Sunday, June 05, 2011 23:21 - NHK
Kan determined to pass important bills
Prime Minister Naoto Kan has indicated that he wants to stay in office until important bills are passed into law.
Kan met senior members of his Democratic Party on Sunday and said he wants to exercise his leadership to have 3 important bills ready to be approved.
The legislation covers a draft second extra budget for reconstruction projects, a bill for issuing government bonds to cover deficits and another for child allowances.
The party members said that if the Kan Cabinet submits the draft budget, it should take charge of Diet deliberations as well, suggesting that he should stay in office until the budget is approved.
Kan denied speculation that he intends to resign when reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant are safely shut down, which is projected to take place in January.
He said people apparently misunderstood his remark that he will leave office after the damaged plant is put under control.

Monday, June 06, 2011 07:37 - NHK
DPJ, LDP explore possibility of grand coalition
Japan's ruling and opposition parties are clashing over when Prime Minister Naoto Kan will step down. At the same time, they are exploring the possibility of a grand coalition.
The current session of the Diet will end on June 22nd. But it remains unclear if the Diet will pass a second supplementary budget and a bill to allow the government to issue debt-covering bonds.
The Secretary General of the ruling Democratic Party, Katsuya Okada, said on Sunday that he favors a grand coalition of the governing and opposition parties for a limited period of time. Former Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara 前原誠司 said the political stalemate caused by the opposition-dominated Upper House should be ended so that Japan can focus on reconstruction. He said a grand coalition is the way to go.
The Secretary General of the opposition Liberal Democratic Party, Nobuteru Ishihara, said the party would consider the possibility of a grand coalition more positively once the timing of the Lower House dissolution and a general election become clear.
The Democratic Party's Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary, Yoshito Sengoku 仙谷由人, has met with Liberal Democratic Party Vice President Tadamori Oshima 大島理森 several times to exchange views on the possibility.

On Sunday, Kan told Democratic Party executives that he wants to bring disaster-related problems under control before he steps down. He and party executives confirmed they will do all they can to get the 2 key bills passed during the current session of the Diet. Kan also met Parliamentary Secretary for the Cabinet Office Yukihito Akutsu 阿久津幸彦 and other allies.
After the meeting, Akutsu told reporters that Kan spoke about his dreams, including reforming the nation's tax system and social security system at the same time.
Some members of the government and the Democratic Party say Kan will leave office some time this summer. But Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa 北澤俊美 said a new leader must be selected with the participation of party members and supporters, so the timing of Kan's departure will be after September 1st. Opposition parties are demanding an earlier departure, saying that a new leader must be in charge of reconstruction.
LDP Secretary General Ishihara said that unless Kan resigns, his party will not cooperate on the passage of the bills to approve debt-covering bonds and the supplementary budget. Some Democratic Party members say the timing of Kan's departure may be earlier than expected.

Monday, June 06, 2011 13:34 - NHK
Edano seeks cooperative deal with opposition
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano 枝野幸男 says he wants to see an arrangement in which ruling and opposition lawmakers can cooperate on a wide range of issues.
Edano was commenting on growing calls for a grand coalition among executives of the ruling Democratic Party and the main opposition Liberal Democratic Party.
Edano told reporters a deal is needed because the government has to work quickly to achieve "a measure of progress" in disaster recovery and getting the nuclear accident at Fukushima Daiichi plant under control. He said the calls for swift action from people in the disaster zone must be answered.
Executives of both parties forming a grand coalition is a possibility after Prime Minister Naoto Kan leaves office.
Asked about when Kan will step down, Edano said the government has to adjust its disaster response every day due to the volatility of the situation, but that it must do all it can to get relief measures on track.
He says there is no clear-cut definition for what Prime Minister Naoto Kan calls "a measure of progress," but he believes it is a reasonable gauge and will be widely accepted.

. . . . .

Opposition tells Kan to step down in June

The secretaries general of the opposition Liberal Democratic Party and New Komeito urged Prime Minister Naoto Kan on Sunday to step down by the end of this month.
While Kan plans to resign by August, Katsuya Okada, the secretary general of Kan's ruling Democratic Party of Japan, suggested in an NHK program that the prime minister leave the post earlier than currently planned.
Okada also expressed a willingness to temporarily form a grand coalition government with the conservative LDP to tackle the task of rebuilding regions devastated by the March disaster before the next general election is held and decides the ruling party.

Ozawa escapes DPJ repercussions

Former DPJ leader Ichiro Ozawa will escape punishment for his role in the no-confidence vote against Prime Minister Naoto Kan's Cabinet because the party's leaders fear his followers' clout.
The Democratic Party of Japan's top leadership will refrain from punishing the party's former leader, Ichiro Ozawa, for abstaining from Thursday's vote on the no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Naoto Kan's Cabinet, DPJ sources said Saturday.
For the 14 other than Ozawa, however, the leadership is leaning toward suspending their membership unless they had good reason to skip the vote, such as illness, they said.


Tuesday, June 07, 2011

DPJ pushing LDP ties after Kan resigns
June exit may speed grand bloc
Prime Minister Naoto Kan's ruling Democratic Party of Japan on Monday again started exploring the possibility of forming a coalition government with the main opposition party after his expected exit possibly this month.
In addition to DPJ executives who voiced support over the weekend for forming a grand coalition with the conservative Liberal Democratic Party, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano acknowledged its necessity.

"It is desirable to have a structure where a wide range of cooperation can be assured in the Diet," Edano, the top government spokesman, said at a news conference. "The DPJ is working on the matter more specifically."

Prime Minister Naoto Kan bites into a salted plum presented by Miss Plum Saki Yasuda on Monday at the Prime Minister's Official Residence.
source : Japan Times


Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Wednesday, June 08, 2011 09:58 - NHK
Lawmakers debate timing of Kan's departure
Calls are mounting from within Japan's ruling Democratic Party, or DPJ, for Prime Minister Naoto Kan to step down as soon as the Diet passes a budget bill for debt-covering bonds, possibly by the end of June.
Some DPJ leaders say Diet affairs cannot move forward without cooperation from the Liberal Democratic Party and other opposition groups.
They are proposing that Kan's resignation coincide with the enactment of a temporary law to allow the issuance of debt-covering bonds.
Kan said on Tuesday that the government plans to submit a secondary budget bill in July to fund the rebuilding of northeastern Japan. He said he would then decide when to step down based on common sense.
Opposition parties are demanding that Kan leave office as soon as possible. They say a prime minister who has said he will resign cannot take responsibility for compiling the budget bill and other important challenges at hand.
Separately, some leaders of the ruling and opposition parties are conducting unofficial talks on the possibility of forming a grand coalition after Kan leaves. But both sides are still cautious about the idea.
Former foreign minister Seiji Maehara 前原誠司 suggested on Tuesday that choosing a prime minister in such a coalition from outside the Democratic Party would be an option.
. . . . . and
The dollar fell below 80 yen on the Tokyo foreign exchange market on Wednesday for the first time in about 2 and a half months.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011 13:32 - NHK
Edano defends Kan adminstration
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano says the current Japanese Cabinet has made progress in some areas over the past year, including tax and social security reform.
The top government spokesman was speaking to reporters on Wednesday, the first anniversary of the start of Prime Minister Naoto Kan's cabinet.
Edano admitted that Kan's administration has been unable to make significant advances in many areas. But he stressed that it sorted out options and carried forward various important issues. He said these include reforming tax and social security systems in an integrated way.
Edano added that Japan's politics now face the challenge of yielding results by building on the achievements made over the past year.
Referring to Kan's remarks last week that he will pass on his responsibilities to the younger generation after he fulfills his role, Edano said the current administration and those that follow must make efforts to this end.

LDP wants Kan to exit by mid-June
Prime Minister Naoto Kan must resign immediately after the enactment of a bill outlining the rebuilding of areas affected by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, major opposition parties said Tuesday.
The enactment is expected as soon as June 17. The secretaries general of the Liberal Democratic Party and New Komeito agreed on the timing for Kan to step down, lawmakers said.
LDP leader Sadakazu Tanigaki, who proposed the timing of Kan's resignation, also expressed at a party meeting that the LDP is ready to establish cross-party cooperation to avoid policy paralysis.

"By creating a new framework, we will not escape from our responsibility to deal with the reconstruction," Tanigaki said.

Executives of Kan's Democratic Party of Japan and the LDP are both exploring the possibility of forming a grand coalition after Kan's resignation.
But a tug of war continues over when Kan, the fifth prime minister in five years, should quit.
... Many other Cabinet members are also supportive of the idea of creating a grand coalition to address the raft of challenges facing Japan.
... New Komeito is cautious about joining hands with the DPJ.
source : Japan Times


Thursday, June 09, 2011

Thursday, June 09, 2011 14:57 - NHK
Kan expresses desire to stay on through August
Prime Minister Naoto Kan has indicated that he will stay in office at least until the end of August, despite calls for him to step down this month.
Kan was speaking at a lower house committee on Thursday, one week after he survived a no-confidence motion submitted by opposition parties critical of his handling of the March 11th disaster and Fukushima nuclear accident.
Kan said the fact that the motion was rejected by a big margin means he was given a mandate to do his best to address reconstruction.
He spoke of the need to help evacuees living in temporary housing make a living, remove debris from the stricken areas and settle the Fukushima nuclear accident. He said he wants to fulfill his responsibilities until prospects become clear for these efforts to bear fruit.
He said the government is striving to clear debris from residential areas by the end of August. He also said it is his responsibility to connect that effort to the 2nd and 3rd stages of debris removal.
The government plans to help all those affected in the March 11th earthquake and tsunami settle in temporary housing by the mid-August holiday season.

Thursday, June 09, 2011 22:02 - NHK
DPJ preparing for leadership election
With Japanese politics abuzz over when Prime Minister Naoto Kan will resign, several names have been tossed around as candidates to head the ruling Democratic Party. Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda 野田佳彦 is among them.
Some senior members of the Kan Cabinet are believed to support Noda, citing his likely continuation of economic and fiscal policy.
They also reportedly say that Noda would face less opposition from fellow DPJ lawmakers critical of the government than other candidates.
Noda has remained noncommittal. He said he would like to fulfill his duties as finance minister in the government and nothing more or less.
Kan said in the Lower House on Thursday that he wants to stay in office until reconstruction efforts in the disaster-hit areas have made progress, possibly by August.
Other names being talked about include former foreign minister Seiji Maehara, agriculture minister Michihiko Kano 鹿野道彦 and economy minister Banri Kaieda.
Maehara said at a meeting that it's not time for him to stand up for leadership but he would like to stay on top of the issue.
Former internal affairs minister Kazuhiro Haraguchi 原口一博 said he will not turn down the job if he is asked. Haraguchi added that with Kan still in power he wants to watch the situation calmly.
Meanwhile, former DPJ leader Ichiro Ozawa said he will field a candidate, taking into account his experience and relations with opposition parties.
Ozawa told lawmakers close to him it doesn't matter which group a candidate belongs to, as long as they rebuild the country. He stressed the importance of party unity and added that he believes his group will win the next party leadership election.

Besieged Kan marks milestone: one year
The first anniversary of Naoto Kan's prime ministership arrived Wednesday amid a whirlwind of political maneuvering and speculation over when he would step down and whether the ruling and opposition parties can form a grand coalition.
Even as the nation struggles in the aftermath of the deadly tsunami and earthquake, and with the crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant, ruling and opposition party lawmakers have been engaged in horse-trading, triggering public ire and disappointment, especially among those in the disaster zones.
..... The three most likely exit scenarios are: He will hang on until the passage of the basic reconstruction bill, or until legislation is enacted to allow the issuance of deficit-covering government bonds to fund a large part of the fiscal 2011 initial budget, which is currently being debated in the Lower House. Third, he might wait for the drafting of the second supplementary budget for fiscal 2011, possibly in July.
..... And even after Kan steps down, the biggest question remains for the DPJ: Who's next?
Among those floated as candidates are Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshito Sengoku, Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda and former Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara.
..... Another major task is uniting the DPJ, which nearly splintered after kingpin Ichiro Ozawa, former Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama and dozens of others expressed their intention to vote with the opposition on a no-confidence motion submitted last week against Kan.
source : Japan Times

Groundless call for coalition
After Prime Minister Naoto Kan survived a no-confidence motion on June 2, Democratic Party of Japan Secretary General Katsuya Okada started calling for the formation of a grand coalition between the DPJ and the Liberal Democratic Party.
It is irresponsible of Mr. Okada to make such a call. It appears that he has forgotten the simple fact that the DPJ came to power by beating the LDP in the August 2009 Lower House election with slogans that represented a rejection of LDP politics.
Mr. Okada's call for a grand coalition is tantamount to throwing down the drain the DPJ's basic policy ideas enscapsulated in "People's lives come first" and "From concrete to humans" — slogans that showed many voters a ray of hope.
..... Mr. Okada's call for a grand coalition seems nothing more than an attempt to varnish over his inability as DPJ secretary general to move politics forward. Control of most Diet seats by the DPJ and the LDP runs against the principle of democracy anyway.
source : Japan Times


Friday, June 10, 2011

Noda emerges as likely Kan successor : 野田佳彦
With Naoto Kan's days as prime minister apparently numbered, Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda emerges as a key candidate to succeed Kan.
source : Japan Times


Sunday, June 12, 2011

Those opposing Kan offer no clear reason he must go

... But maybe Japan is closer to America in this regard, as evidenced by the preposterous no-confidence vote brought about by the opposition Liberal Democratic Party in a move to unseat Prime Minister Naoto Kan. As a national leader, Kan is about as lame a duck as you're likely to see. After helping drive the economy further into the ground, he was expected to resign this past spring, but then that earthquake inconveniently upset the natural order and he was allowed to stick around because who wants a power vacuum during a national crisis? Despite obvious signs that the public found the possibility of a no-confidence vote absurd, the LDP pushed for it.
... As host Hiroshi Sekiguchi said on the TBS news show "Super Morning,"
"The average person isn't being told why Kan has to quit."
... his sole "position" is that he shouldn't resign because voters are sick of prime ministers quitting after a year.
Media surveys show that there is absolutely no consensus on who should replace him. The only thing they agree on is that all politicians should work together to solve the country's very considerable problems.
source : Japan Times

Sunday, June 12, 2011 23:11 - NHK
Kan to work to pass bill for debt-covering bonds
Prime Minister Naoto Kan has agreed with the Secretary General of his ruling Democratic Party, Katsuya Okada, that the budget bill for debt-covering bonds should be passed under his administration.
Calls have been mounting from within the party for Kan to step down soon, so that it may gain the opposition parties' support in passing the bill.
Kan told Okada at his official residence on Sunday that he would like to be responsible for passing the bill.
Okada responded that the bill is essential for this fiscal year's budget, and that reconstruction efforts in the disaster-hit areas would be affected if it does not pass the Diet.
As the current Diet session is scheduled to end on June 22nd, Okada plans to discuss extending it with the opposition parties this week.
Kan also told Okada that an increasing number of requests are coming in from the disaster-stricken areas. He said many of these cannot be fulfilled with the first supplementary budget, indicating that he wants to stay on to draw up the second supplementary budget.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Monday, June 13, 2011 18:39 - NHK
Kan support rate falls to 25%
NHK's latest poll shows the support rate for Prime Minister Naoto Kan's cabinet has dropped 3 points from last month, to 25 percent. The disapproval rate has risen 2 points to 57 percent.
The weekend poll of 1,685 randomly selected voters had a response rate of 66 percent.
The survey asked about Kan's announcement that he will resign once he fulfills his responsibility for national recovery from the March 11th disaster and the nuclear accident in Fukushima.
Twenty-six percent of respondents said that he should resign. Forty-six percent said Kan has no choice but to step down, while 22 percent said he doesn't have to go.
Asked when Kan should leave his post, 31 percent said by the end of June. Twenty-five percent said they want him to step down around August. Fifteen percent said between autumn and year-end, while 19 percent said next year or later.
Forty-two percent of the respondents expressed their support for a grand coalition between the main governing Democratic Party and the largest opposition Liberal Democratic Party to speed up reconstruction efforts.
Fourteen percent were against such a coalition.
Forty percent said they are undecided.

. . . . .

quote Japan Times
DPJ meeting could seal Kan's fate
Child allowance at risk; leader's exit may stop opposition from killing budget bill amid crisis
... Kan may signal his readiness to leave at an all-members meeting this week of his Democratic Party of Japan, sources in the party said.
... To ensure the Diet passes the bill, which is needed to secure about 40 percent of the revenue for the ¥92.41 trillion fiscal 2011 budget, Kan is also likely to say that the DPJ-led government will scrap its pledge on monthly allowances for families with children, a vow Kan has kept but one that the conservative Liberal Democratic Party and smaller opposition parties have criticized as wasteful, the sources said. ...
source : Japan Times

Japan gropes for leadership
Japan, as well as the Japanese, are fighting and struggling. They are running against the wind of the rising yen-dollar exchange rate, which tends to affect exports. And the economy struggles in the almost bottomless pit of government deficits, which are likely to worsen as a result of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami.

On top of these economic strains, tension is mounting in the political arena. The headquarters for supervising the emergency measures since March 11 seems to be in a state of confusion, if not disintegration as some newspapers describe.
Everywhere, one hears grumbling and complaints, and sees frustration and disenchantment. Despite this gloomy picture, the Japanese people have not, so far, given voice to strong protest. Even university students, who must run from one job-seeking meeting to another as early as two years before graduation, appear resigned to accepting employers' egoistic practices.
..... there are the individual fights against fear and anxiety. If openly confessed, these fights are likely to increase and deepen social anxiety as a whole. The Japanese are well aware of the danger of another great quake, which, according to "scientific" prediction, is likely to visit an area somewhere between Nagoya and Tokyo.
People are increasingly aware, thanks to the earthquake, of their own political and economic responsibility; yet they are not ready to gather forces and resources for a new direction under a new vision, because they are busy struggling and fighting within themselves.
source : Japan Times / KAZUO OGOURA


Thursday, June 16, 2011

Ozawa Ichiro will be suspended from the DPJ party for the next three months, because he did not show up for the vote of non-confidence.

Thursday, June 16, 2011 07:45 - NHK
Kan resolved to enact natural energy law
Prime Minister Naoto Kan says he is determined to enact an energy-related bill in the current session of parliament despite calls for him to step down.
Kan was speaking on Wednesday night at a meeting to discuss the creation of a framework for power companies to invest in natural energy sources.
Kan told the 350 participants that a natural energy bill was submitted to the Diet several months ago but that little progress has been made in enacting the bill.
Kan said such a bill would be a first step in making use of natural energy sources and that he hopes to have the bill enacted.
The meeting brought together experts as well as a non-partisan group of legislators working for the legislation against the use of nuclear power.
One of the participants, Softbank Chairman and CEO Masayoshi Son said he hopes Kan succeeds in getting the bill through the Diet.
The Prime Minister jokingly said he will tell his opponents in the Diet that if they really hope to see him resign early, they should agree to enact the bill. Kan was referring to legislators who are calling for him to step down because of his handling of the March 11th disaster and the Fukushima nuclear accident.

DPJ to seek 'substantial' Diet extension
Party says time is needed for recovery bills; LDP vows fight
The Democratic Party of Japan will seek to "substantially extend" the Diet session and pass key legislation dealing with the aftermath of the March 11 calamity, DPJ Secretary General Katsuya Okada said Wednesday.
But the Liberal Democratic Party has said it opposes stretching the session beyond its scheduled June 22 end, saying Prime Minister Naoto Kan only wants to "prolong the life" of his leadership.
... "Mr. Kan said he would step down once (dealing with the disaster) reaches a certain point," Okada said. "Substantially extending the Diet and having Mr. Kan change places at some point do not contradict each other."
... Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda told a Diet committee Wednesday he is ready to step down if that would clear the way for the passage of the deficit-covering bonds.
... "It is unthinkable for lawmakers to close the Diet and take the summer off amid this major disaster," Okada said. "We must extend the Diet session substantially and thoroughly deliberate necessary bills."
... Okada reportedly said the second extra budget will total about ¥2 trillion.
source : Japan Times


Friday, June 17, 2011

Don't count Ozawa out until he is
Over the decades he's been dubbed the "shadow shogun," "the destroyer" and "the backroom fixer" for his powerful influence in the political arena and penchant for shaking up governments with his "strong hand."
... It was reported that Tuesday, Ozawa invited around 20 close Lower House lawmakers to his home and asked for their unity, emphasizing the importance of working in solidarity in choosing the next leader.
"If Ozawa is able to collect a significant number of votes to support a candidate, he could use this influence to have the new leader grant lawmakers close to him ministerial positions, which would increase his clout in the new administration," Iwai said.
source : Japan Times


Saturday, June 18, 2011

Saturday, June 18, 2011 22:12 - NHK
Kan: no rush to leave post
Prime Minister Naoto Kan says he will consider measures to help people whose properties were damaged by liquefaction in the March 11th earthquake in the 3rd supplementary budget. This is being taken as a sign that he intends to stay on the job.
Kan visited Urayasu City in Chiba Prefecture, east of Tokyo on Saturday. He inspected a levee that was pushed 2 meters toward the sea due to liquefaction.
He later told reporters that he will consider measures to cope with earthquake damage in urban areas including liquefaction, and include them in the 2nd and possibly 3rd supplementary budget.
Earlier this month, Kan indicated that he would step down, but did not mention when.
His remarks on Saturday are being taken as an indication that he intends to stay on the job.

(We see him on TV, lately often with a smile on his face. Reporters have made their remarks about this smile too, some think it is offending the people in Tohoku, others think it shows he feels secure in what he is doing and it is encourageing the people.)


Monday, June 20, 2011

Monday, June 20, 2011 17:36 - NHK
Okada asks PM to quit after passage of key bills
Democratic Party Secretary General Katsuya Okada has asked Prime Minister Naoto Kan to announce, within a day or two, that he will step down once 2 key bills are enacted.
Okada made the request at a meeting with Kan in the prime minister's office on Monday, 2 days before the scheduled close of the current Diet session.
Okada told Kan that he needs to say when he intends to resign to win opposition support for an extension of the Diet session to secure the passage of the 2 bills.
One is to issue debt-covering government bonds. The other is a 2nd extra budget for the rebuilding of regions hit by the March 11th disaster.
It's not clear how Kan will respond to Okada's request.
Last Wednesday, Kan said he wanted to enact a natural energy bill during the current Diet session. He has also spoken of the need to compile a 3rd supplementary budget for full-fledged reconstruction efforts.
Kan's opponents have called for him to resign early, over his handling of the disaster and the Fukushima nuclear accident.
On June 2nd, Kan drew anger from opposition parties and also from within his own party by ruling out an early resignation after he survived a no-confidence motion.


Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Kan may resign by the end of August
Prime Minister Naoto Kan has decided to extend the current Diet session by 70 days to secure the passage of 2 key bills. If opposition parties accept the plan, Kan is likely to step down by the end of August.
Kan met the ruling Democratic Party's Secretary General Katsuya Okada and Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano on Tuesday night.
They decided to extend the Diet session to the end of August. During the session, they aim to pass 2 key bills to issue deficit-covering government bonds and for a 2nd extra budget.
They also agreed that a 3rd supplementary budget for full-fledged reconstruction efforts will be discussed by a new government after Kan.
If the opposition Liberal Democratic Party and New Komeito party accept the proposal and the 2 bills are passed, Kan is likely to step down by the end of August.
The two opposition parties will discuss the issue on Wednesday.
Kan survived a no-confidence motion earlier this month after he expressed his intention to resign. But Kan drew anger from the opposition and members of his own party by not saying when he intends to step down.


Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sunday, June 26, 2011 12:00 - NHK
Okada: Kan may resign during Diet session
The governing Democratic Party's Secretary General Katsuya Okada says Prime Minister Naoto Kan may resign during the extended session of the Diet, that is, before the end of August.
Okada was speaking to reporters in Tokyo on Sunday. He indicated that the resignation was conditional on 2 key bills to issue deficit-covering government bonds and for a 2nd extra budget being enacted, and another bill for the purchase of renewable energy should be voted on as well.
When asked whether Kan will dissolve the Diet and call a general election if the bill for the purchase of renewable energy is voted down, Okada waved off the question and said there is so much for politicians to do.


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 02:18 - NHK
Kan seeks 3 bills before resignation
Japan's Prime Minister Naoto Kan has named 3 bills related to post-disaster reconstruction efforts that he wants to enact before he steps down.
In early June, Kan said he intends to resign once he fulfills his role in handling issues related to the March 11th disaster and the Fukushima nuclear accident.
In a news conference on Monday, Kan clarified what he believes that role to be.
He said he wants to pass a second supplementary budget, a bill to compel utilities to purchase renewable energy, and a bill for the issuance of debt-covering bonds.
Kan has been under strong pressure to step down not only from opposition parties but also from within his ruling Democratic Party, who say that he has mishandled the disaster.


Kan revamps Cabinet posts
LDP defector included in reshuffle to cover reconstruction post

Prime Minister Naoto Kan on Monday gave some of his Cabinet ministers new jobs and hired a member of the top opposition party to be his parliamentary secretary for internal affairs — moves that were viewed as an effort to extend his grip on power despite stated plans to step down.
The moves angered the leadership of the conservative Liberal Democratic Party and even dismayed some in his own party, ensuring the Democratic Party of Japan-led ruling coalition will have a tough time handling government-sponsored bills in the divided Diet.
On Monday, Kan appointed LDP Upper House lawmaker Kazuyuki Hamada, who has decided to defect, to parliamentary secretary of the internal affairs ministry and made him a member of the headquarters for rebuilding disaster-stricken Tohoku.
He also promoted adviser Goshi Hosono to state minister in charge of the nuclear power plant crisis and head of consumer affairs and food-safety issues.
Renho, the popular administrative reform minister who only goes by one name, was appointed Kan's special advisor and will relinquish her portfolio to Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano.
Last week, Kan announced that Environment Minister Ryu Matsumoto had been tapped as minister of the new reconstruction agency. His old job will be taken over by Justice Minister Satsuki Eda, who will perform both roles at once.

Kan said earlier under pressure that he plans to step down after the nation regains solid footing from the March 11 disasters, cooling a rebellion in his divided DPJ. But his refusal to set a solid exit date has left his foes frustrated. His departure has lately been linked to passing key budget- and energy-related bills.
Edano, Kan's right-hand man, rushed Monday to say that the new appointments do not mean Kan is just trying to stay in power.

source : Japan Times


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Wednesday, June 29, 2011 06:24 - NHK
Kan criticized by members of his party
Prime Minister Naoto Kan has been criticized by members of his own party for appointing an opposition lawmaker to a senior Cabinet post.
The criticism came at a meeting of all the legislators of the Democratic Party on Tuesday, one day after Kan reshuffled his administration.
Many participants criticized Kan for naming an opposition member as Vice Internal Affairs Minister in charge of reconstructing the regions devastated by the March 11th earthquake and tsunami.
Kazuyuki Hamada, a member of the House of Councilors, left the Liberal Democratic Party to accept the post.
The Liberal Democratic Party reacted against the appointment, and Kan is likely to have further trouble gaining opposition support to get bills through the Diet.
At a news conference on Monday, Kan indicated that the enactment of the 2nd supplementary budget for fiscal 2011 and 2 other key bills could be conditions for his possible resignation as Prime Minister. One key bill is designed to promote the use of renewable energy sources and another would enable the government to issue deficit-covering bonds.
Kan reiterated this at Tuesday's meeting, but many urged him to step down early. Some said people feel it absurd that the Prime Minister has failed to say when he will resign. Others said a new Prime Minister should be elected before the end of August.
Kan has been under pressure from both the opposition and members of his own party who accuse him of lacking leadership in addressing the reconstruction of stricken areas and the nuclear disaster in Fukushima.

Kan keeps foes on edge over resignation timetable
Prime Minister Naoto Kan's announcement Monday that he would step down after the second extra budget and two key bills are passed may, at a glance, appear as though he finally clarified when he is leaving.

But it still remains to be seen whether his remark means the end of what critics call his "smokescreen tactic" to keep every key issue vague. In reality, the move means one thing — he is trying to stay in power for as long as possible, the critics say.

Kan took a new tack Monday by recruiting lawmaker Kazuyuki Hamada of the Liberal Democratic Party, the largest opposition force, into his administration. Hamada is a member of the Upper House and Kan is desperate to win over as many people as possible from the opposition camp in the divided Diet.

The action, however, triggered harsh anger not only in the LDP but also within the ruling Democratic Party of Japan.
"By headhunting one lawmaker (from the LDP, Kan) has raised the hurdle for negotiations between the ruling and opposition parties," said DPJ policy chief Koichiro Genba, whose job is to negotiate legislation with the opposition.

Kan may have tried to create uncertainty over the passage of the bills as an excuse to stay in power, the critics said.
source : Japan Times


May 2011 till June 5, 2011
. The Political Situation - PART 1 .

July, 01, 2011 till
. The Political Situation - PART 3 .

DIARY - daily reports


[ . BACK to TOP of this BLOG. ]

1 comment:

    Moves to oust Kan may be linked to politicians in TEPCO's pocket

    2011/06/16 asahi.com

    Naoto Kan may leave a lot to be desired as a prime minister, but one thing's certain--he's never taken a dime from Tokyo Electric Power Co., the operator of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.

    Kan's complete independence from TEPCO money--and pressure--may be the real reason so many lawmakers are trying to push him out the door. His calls to shift Japan away from nuclear energy and to break TEPCO into separate companies that handle power generation and power transmission threaten some very powerful special interests.

    There are many lawmakers in both the ruling Democratic Party of Japan and the opposition Liberal Democratic Party who have taken TEPCO money for years and feel obligated to protect the company's interests.

    The confrontation between those who want to protect TEPCO and those in government who want to drastically reform the company heated up from May 24 when the Kan Cabinet approved the establishment of two committees related to TEPCO.

    The committee tasked with investigating and evaluating the Fukushima nuclear accident held its first meeting June 7.

    The other committee was pushed by Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshito Sengoku and will look into TEPCO's management and financial condition. A number of committee members were involved in offering support to such ailing companies as Daiei Inc. and Kanebo Ltd. at the government-backed Industrial Revitalization Corp. (IRC).