Koike Camp Wins Landslide in Tokyo Election, Trounces LDP (News)
Tokyo, July 2 (Jiji Press)—Tomin First no Kai (Tokyoites First), a regional party led by Tokyo Governor Koike Yuriko, and forces supporting Koike won a landslide victory in a Tokyo metropolitan assembly election held on Sunday, handing Prime Minister Abe Shinzō's Liberal Democratic Party a historic defeat in the capital.
The Koike camp—which also includes Kōmeitō, a coalition partner to the LDP on the national stage—won a clear majority of 79 seats in the 127-seat assembly. Tomin First emerged as the leading party with 49 seats, up from just 6 seats before the election, while the LDP, which had the largest preelection strength of 57 seats, fell to a record-low of 23 seats, far below its previous all-time low of 38 seats.
The big defeat of the LDP will deal a severe blow to the Abe government and weaken the prime minister's centripetal force within the party, critics said.
Abe has expressed the desire to propose constitutional amendment plans to the National Diet by the end of the year on the assumption that he will be elected to a third term as LDP president in the scheduled party leadership election in autumn 2018.
But LDP members' frustration with the Tokyo election results and with the concentration of power in Abe's office may force him to review those plans, the critics said.[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]