Saturday, June 16, 2007

What the LDP-Komeito Coalition Needs in the July Upper House Election: The Arithmetic

The following came out of a dialogue with a few friends, including Ross Schaap at Eurasia Group. I thought it would be useful to show you where that "the LDP needs 20 seats, etc., etc." talk comes from..

Yomiuri (June 7) did a two-page spread, a roster of the 119 incumbents, including their voting records on the main issues. It shows that the LDP has an incumbent in every multiple-seat district (18) except Niigata, but they lost that in a by-election (and should be able to regain this time around), which should be canceled out by the one of the two they currently have in Kanagawa by way of a by-election (of which they will likely lose one in the July election). Unless the LDP-Komeito coalition is so lame that the LDP and Sokagakkai jointly fail to put their LDP man no worse than second place in a two-seat district (four seats, actually, of which two come up for election every three years), this will give them 18 as starters. Add 13 for the pro rata seats they managed to retain in the disastrous 2004 election, and you get 31. Assuming Komeito retains its 13, the LDP needs 20 more out of the 29 single seats (actually, the ones that comes up for election out of the two-seaters, plus/minus the variation in the PR results, to reach the 64 seats needed for a majority in the Upper House. I can see this is where the district-by -information really counts.

Now I would very much appreciate someone pointing me to free online sources that give facts and figures for the candidates, individual districts and overall situation and other information pertaining to the election. Hopefully, someone out there knows someone who just can't help him/herself and has to do that stuff on his/her own.


Unknown said...

Check out the yahoo site for political info, though the final info for the approaching election isn't available yet because it is not entirely clear who is running and for which party.

Also, are you aware of the Junichi Fukumoto conflict in the Komeito? All the LDP needs now is for the start of a schism in the otherwise dictatorial Komeito. That could really hurt them, down the road even more than in this upper house election.

Jun Okumura said...

Sorry, Ross. I'd completely forgotten about the email account that serves this blog for me, and missed the notice.

Thanks for the link. I'll keep an ey on it.

As for Junichi Fukumoto, Ⅰcan't find any any information on a Sokagakkai background. He may be one of those candidates Komeito recruited when they tried to reach beyond its religous base. If that's the case, then the damage should be minimal. In any case, the DPJ (where that famously non-Sokagakkai Wakako Hironaka now resides) apparently doesn't want to touch him.