Japan to Dissolve Lower Parliament, Hold Elections


Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party lost its majority in the Tokyo assembly Sunday when its opposition, the Democratic Party of Japan, garnered more votes in local elections.

Toshiaki Oikawa, the Democratic Party of Japan’s spokesman, said the party issued a motion of no confidence – not expecting it to pass, but merely embarrass – against Prime Minister Taro Aso and his cabinet in parliament, reported the Associated Press.

Aso decided to dissolve the lower house of Japan’s parliament and hold reelections. A senior Liberal Democratic Party official said that the defeat Sunday has lead to “severe judgment [of the Liberal Democratic Party] from Tokyo residents,” reported the BBC.

The BBC also reported that Yukio Hatoyama, the leader of the Democratic Party of Japan, said that Aso should dissolve the lower house of parliament and “ask for the people’s voice…and [call] a general election.”

The Diet, Japan’s legislative body, is scheduled to be dissolved the week of July 21 with the general election taking place on August 30, said Jun Matsumoto, the chief Cabinet spokesman.

Aso has also been faced with resignation as his approval rating continues to fall and Japan’s economic crisis continues to worsen. Aso’s two most recent predecessors, both from his party, resigned less than a year after becoming Prime Minister.

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