Thursday, December 27, 2012

What If the String of One-Year-and-Out Prime Ministers Were Just a Coincidence?

Here's a related point that came to mind while writing a response to an email regarding Abe's prospects.

It is easy to forget, also, that 1) the other side of assuming that Abe is in good health now is that all the signs in 2007 that he intended to carry on but had to resign for health reasons were not some aimless, ill-designed pretext, 2) Fukuda willingly relinquished the office even though his poll numbers had been on a steady if unspectacular rise in the belief that Aso would be better equipped to fight an election campaign, and 3) Aso spent a year building a legacy instead of homing in on the election. With good health, Abe could easily have hung on at least until the next LDP leadership election, and we would be dealing with a very different LDP narrative.

I’m not ready to give up the search for a common thread and I’m aware that I have a strong bias for “small” explanations, but I am definitely less convinced that we’re stuck in a Groundhog Day remake.

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