Despite Increased Seats, Komeito Worried about Fall in Votes


Tokyo, July 28 (Jiji Press)--Komeito boosted its presence in the House of Councillors in the latest election, but a sense of crisis is building up among party officials as the number of votes it acquired in the proportional representation system fell by more than one million from the previous election.

The officials are worried about a weakening of the once-solid organizational strength of the party, a junior partner of the Liberal democratic Party-led ruling coalition, due chiefly to the aging of its supporters.

In the July 21 Upper House election, all of seven Komeito candidates were elected in constituencies, while the party gained seven seats in the proportional representation bloc. The new seats, totaling 14, is up from 11 seats that were up for re-election and equaled the record high marked in the previous triennial election in 2016.

At a party meeting on Thursday, Natsuo Yamaguchi, chief representative of Komeito, highlighted the record-tying performance, but at the same time ordered party executives to discuss how the party can strengthen its ability to communicate its policy attitudes and measures to the electorate.

Komeito's advance was apparently aided by a low level of voter turnout in the election, which stood at 48.80 pct, slipping below 50 pct for the second time since the end of World War II.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press