THE NEXT GOVERNOR OF TOKYO
by Romy Berggren
Tokyo gubernatorial race descending into a whole lot of mess..
1. Yoichi Masuzoe :
(With a big target like Olympics, we can truly transform Tokyo).
Yoichi Masuzoe and LDP backing him are scrambling to make the nuclear power issue a non-issue in the election. Masuzoe, who has been pro-nuclear, now says:
“I have always been saying zero nuke plant.”
2. Morihiro Hosokawa :
(Part of the Olympics should be held in Tohoku)
(To deal with nuclear power plant issues is a very worthwhile job for me as a governor).
after meeting with ex-LDP PM Koizumi and declaring his candidacy on his birthday
3. Kenji Utsunomiya :
Simple, and environmentally-friendly Olympics
Clearly, Mr. Utsunomiya and his political backers did not expect the entry of Morihiro Hosokawa in the race with the backing from Junichiro Koizumi, who has been quite vocal in his anti-nuclear message of late.
Social Democrats are trying to back out from supporting him, saying the anti-nuclear faction should rally behind Hosokawa. Social Dems bet too early, I suppose.
Mr. Utsunomiya himself is accusing Mr. Koizumi for forcing a single-issue campaign.
Some people ask, “What about yourself, Mr. Utsunomiya?”
4. Junichiro Koizumi :
“If Tokyo shows it can survive [and prosper] without nuclear power plants, it can definitely change the whole nation.”
after meeting with ex-PM Hosokawa and being asked why he was supporting Hosokawa:
For Mr. Koizumi, January 14 was not Hosokawa’s birthday, but the day, in the old lunar calendar (December 14), when 47 samurais took revenge on behalf of their lord who in their minds suffered injustice. Lunar December 14 is not January 14, but that’s how Koizumi felt anyway.
Koizumi projects a future vision, while Hosokawa doesn’t. The former lasted 5 years as the prime minister, the latter 9 months. Oh well.
Meaning he is all for gradually lessen the dependency on nuclear power. Prime Minister Abe chimes in from Ethiopia that he is hoping that the debate will be well-balanced, not just about the nuclear issue. As Mr. Koizumi remains popular and influential within LDP, the Abe administration officials are very reluctant to accuse Koizumi of “treason”.
The official start of the election campaign is on January 23, and the election will be held on February 9.
(from Sankei Shinbun (1/14/2014) and Nikkei Shinbun (1/15/2014)