Japan’s Ruling Coalition Likely to Get Two-Thirds of Votes in Snap Election

Japan’s Ruling Coalition Likely to Get Two-Thirds of Votes in Snap Election
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REUTERS/ Kim Kyung-HoonAsia & Pacific09:01 18.10.2017(updated 09:50 18.10.2017) Get short URL
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Japan’s ruling coalition, consisting of the Liberal Democratic Party and the Komeito party, may win a two-thirds majority in the parliament’s lower house in a vote scheduled for Sunday, a recent poll has revealed.

TOKYO (Sputnik) – According to the poll, which was conducted by Kyodo News on October 15-17 among 120,000 potential voters, the ruling coalition may win 310 out of 465 seats in the lower house election. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) is likely to win 280 seats, while its coalition partner, Komeito, may take at least 35 seats in the House of Representatives.

The Party of Hope, created by Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike ahead of the snap elections, has lost its support and is projected to win only 57 seats, the poll showed.

The center-left Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan, formed only two weeks ago, is also contending to lead the opposition. According to the survey, the party may win nearly 50 seats. The party was created by former key officials of the Democratic Party, which ruled the country in 2009-2012 and is headed by Yukio Edano, who served as the Japanese government’s spokesman during the earthquake in 2011 and the Fukushima disaster.

However, the results of the vote may significantly differ, since 40.3 percent of the respondents were not able to name the candidate that they would cast their ballots for in a single-seat electoral district vote, while 40 percent of voters responded that they had not chosen the preferred party for proportional representation vote just days prior to the election.

If the forecast is correct and Abe wins two-thirds of seats in the lower house, he would be able to make amendments to Article 9 of Japan’s pacifist constitution, which bans it from using military force abroad, since the move requires at least two-thirds of lawmakers in both Diet houses. In July 2016, the ruling coalition was able to cling to a majority in the Diet’s upper house.

Abe called for an Sunday’s early election to the lower house of parliament to ask for a mandate from the voters to conduct bold reforms. The election campaign began on October 10.

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