Abe's Ruling Bloc Scores Landslide Victory in Lower House (News)
Tokyo, Oct. 23 (Jiji Press)—Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzō's Liberal Democratic Party and its coalition partner, Kōmeitō, scored a landslide victory in the crucial general election on Sunday, helping Abe to consolidate his grip on power nearly five years after returning to the nation's top office.
In the closely watched election, the LDP and Kōmeitō won 313 seats in the House of Representatives, the all-important lower chamber of parliament, clearing a major hurdle in Abe's drive to revise the Japanese Constitution.
Any proposal to revise the postwar Constitution needs to be approved by at least two-thirds of members in both chambers of parliament before it is put to a national referendum. More than two-thirds of members in the House of Councillors, the upper chamber, are in favor of amendment.
The Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan, a center-left party set up recently by former Chief Cabinet Secretary Edano Yukio and like-minded liberal defectors from the splintering Democratic Party, gained traction, more than tripling the number of its seats to 55 to emerge as the largest opposition party in the lower house.
Tokyo Governor Koike Yuriko's conservative Party of Hope, which was created just before the election and also took in DP defectors, was unable to maintain its pre-election strength of 57 seats, falling to 50.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.; updated by Nippon.com with final election results](Banner photo: LDP President and Prime Minister Abe Shinzō speaks to the press at party headquarters in Nagatachō, Tokyo, on October 22, 2017. © Jiji.)