Consumption tax and the Constitution are two major issues

The first Diet session after the general election opened on November 19. Despite a number of issues that need to be discussed in the Diet, including the dispatch of the Self-Defense Forces to Iraq, the bill to adversely revise the pension system, and suspicions of corruption in the highway public corporation, the ruling parties have decided to forgo the prime minister's policy speech and questionings by party representatives. Earlier in the day, Japanese Communist Party Dietmembers held a general assembly.

JCP Executive Committee Chair Shii Kazuo expressed the party's determination, saying, "Considering our responsibility to the 4.6 million people who cast votes in support of the JCP and to all those who worked for the JCP during the election campaign, we JCP Dietmembers will put all our energies into the Special Session of the Diet."

Shii emphasized that the JCP's struggle to stop the misgovernment during the election will turn out to be very important, given the fact that the Democratic Party of Japan has fallen into step with the Liberal Democratic Party in calling for a consumption tax rate increase and adverse revisions of the Constitution.

Shii stated that the major issue in the coming period is a choice between politics dominated by a "two conservative party system" and stronger efforts of progressive and democratic forces, and that the JCP has an important role to play in bringing together the progressive and democratic movements.

Shii also said, "Each one of the election policies will be an issue after the election, and JCP policies will stand out as the democratic way to defend the interests of the people."

He added that a consumption tax rate increase and the adverse revisions of the Constitution are the main issues at present and that the JCP will do its utmost to bring grassroots movements together to form the majority opinion. (end)

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