Anti-faction non-faction to become a faction?

Say that five times fast.

In response to the readmission of Hiranuma Takeo, prominent postal rebel, to the LDP, and to the general thrust of discourse within the LDP — Mr. Abe’s speech to the Diet yesterday notwithstanding — the reform-minded “Koizumi children” are apparently at work preparing to convert their study group into a formal LDP faction.

Their rallying cry: “The people are not idiots!”

Of course, the decision that to have influence within the LDP they need to be a formal faction strikes me as an admission of defeat, a rear-guard action on behalf of ideas (and a type of leadership) out of vogue in the party. They will probably not be comforted by Mr. Hiranuma’s statement that he “understands” their opposition.

Will it make any difference? Arguably what’s missing are not the ideas of reform, but the standard bearer. There is no substituting for Mr. Koizumi’s charisma. And given the way the Tanigaki faction has been excluded from power, there’s no guarantee that having a faction will put the “children” any closer to the reins of power within the LDP. The party is treading water with considerable difficulty thanks to the leaden anchor of Mr. Abe. It is unreasonable to think that a band of reformers without a charismatic leader will be able to transform the situation in their favor.

One thought on “Anti-faction non-faction to become a faction?

  1. The article says that the prospects are that there will be more than 30 members in this new Koizumi Children faction. If you go through this list, which I have found to be reliable so far, there are only 29 KCs who have not yet joined a faction. Koichi Yamauchi, executive director of the \”other group\” consisting of 12 members, is one of those unaligned rookies. So, whoever sold the story to the Asahi reporter have arithmetic issues. That, or they hope to lure their buddies out of their new-found faction homes or find some veterans to champion his cause.It is also notable that of the three rookies who spoke up against Mr. Hiranuma\’s return at the LDP Diet members\’ meeting, two won close-fought battles against rebel incumbents and one lost to a rebel incumbent (who has now returned to the LDP) and got in by way of the proportional list. In contrast, neither Mr. Yamauchi nor Masaaki Taira (Yamazaki faction), who chairs the \”other group\”, will face a rebel challenge.

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