Tokai, Japan’s industrial heartland — and a DPJ stronghold?

This is the seventh installment in my general election guide. For an explanation of my purpose in making this guide, see here. For previous installments, see here, here, here, here, here, and here.The Tokai block, comprised of Gifu, Shizuoka, Aichi, and Mie prefectures, is Japan's industrial heartland. Aichi, the fourth most populous prefecture, is home …

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Hokuriku-Shinetsu, favorable prospects for the DPJ

This is the sixth installment in my general election guide. For an explanation of my purpose in making this guide, see here. For previous installments, see here, here, here, here, and here.The Hokuriku-Shinetsu region, comprised of Niigata, Toyama, Ishikawa, Fukui, and Nagano prefectures, has twenty single-member districts and eleven proportional representation seats.In 2005, opposition parties …

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Tokyo, reversing an LDP landslide?

Tokyo, the center of Japanese political and economic life, is growing more than any other jurisdiction — mostly by drawing people from other prefectures — and sends forty-two representatives to the Diet between its twenty-five single-member districts and its seventeen proportional representation seats.The LDP won twenty-three of twenty-five SMDS in 2005, with Komeito and the …

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South Kanto, a (mostly) urban battleground

The South Kanto regional block, comprised of Chiba, Kanagawa, and Yamanashi prefectures, sends thirty-four representatives to the Diet from single-member districts and another twenty-two through proportional representation. Yamanashi, with only three electoral districts, is an unusual fit alongside Kanagawa with its eighteen districts and Chiba with its thirteen. This block is densely urban: Kanagawa has …

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How do you solve a problem like the freeters?

One policy area that could see cooperation between a DPJ-led government and the JCP (and the SDPJ) is the treatment of non-regular workers (mentioned here).The JCP's position on dispatch workers and other non-regular workers is clear: the party wants to ban the employment of temporary workers in manufacturing work, making an exception only for "specialized …

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The DPJ navigates between left and right

Not surprisingly, the LDP has greeted the DPJ's "realism" with severe criticism.Prime Minister Aso Taro suggested that the DPJ has become "blurred" by softening or reversing the positions it had taken on LDP foreign policy initiatives in recent years. Amari Akira, Aso's minister responsible for adminstrative reform, also used the word "blurred" and suggested that …

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