Are the wheels coming off?

On the same morning that Asahi reports that Abe’s popularity has taken yet another blow, dropping to 30%, Yomiuri reports in an article that does not appear to be online that LDP Secretary General Nakagawa Hidenao gave a speech in Toyama in which he suggested that the “abduction problem” will become a point of contention in July’s Upper House elections.

In other words: Constitution revision. (At least as a campaign issue.) Voters of Japan, get ready for weeks of “Song for Megumi.”

Seriously though, how much more opportunistic can Abe’s use of the abductions issue get? Is it really appropriate for the government, when it runs into trouble, to fall back to the maudlin sentimentality of Japan’s abducted children — considering the host of problems facing Japan?

Does Abe really think that if he stands in enough public places apologizing for the pension and seiji to kane scandals everything will be ok and he can go back to talking about destroying the postwar regime?

And so the question in the title of this post. Does the LDP stand a chance of retaining a majority in July, with the DPJ now rushing to shift its emphasis to issues that highlight the failures of LDP governance?

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