Japan Press Weekly
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JCP protests DPJ for undemocratic steering of Diet
The ruling Democratic Party railroaded a bill to encourage financial institutions to ease repayment terms for small- and medium-sized businesses and individuals through the House of Representatives on November 19.
This is the first such abuse of majority power in the Diet since the DPJ came to power.
The Japanese Communist Party, after protesting to the DPJ about the undemocratic steering of the Diet together with the Liberal Democratic and Komei parties, voted in favor of the bill along with the ruling parties.
The House of Representatives Financial Affairs Committee began discussing the bill on November 18.
All parties, ruling as well as opposition, had agreed to hold a hearing on November 19 by inviting outside experts.
Disregarding this agreement at the committeefs board of directors meeting, the DPJ proposed putting the bill to vote immediately after hearing expertsf opinions. The JCP, the LDP, and the Komei Party expressed their disagreement with this move, and the latter two parties boycotted the meeting.
Prior to the vote at the plenary session, Sasaki Kensho of the JCP stated, gThe discussion had just begun. The DPJ rammed the bill through the committee and then soon put it to a vote in the plenary session. Such an undemocratic way of steering the Diet is a continuation of the former LDP-Komei governmentfs disregarding of proper procedure and is absolutely unacceptable.h
Sasaki declared that the JCP would not vote against it because there is no reason for opposing it even though it is not very effective for helping small businesses overcome their financial difficulty.
The LDP in the House of Representatives proposed motions calling for the dismissal of the Financial Affairs Committee chairman and the Rules and Administration Committee chairman, but the motions were rejected. The JCP supported both motions.
Kokuta Keiji, JCP Diet Policy Commission chair, said, "What the DPJ did is a breach of parliamentary democracy.h
Prior to the plenary session, JCP Sasaki and Kokuta requested Yokomichi Takahiro, the House of Representatives speaker, to take the initiative to send the bill back to the committee so that the committee can examine it carefully based on expertsf testimony.
- Akahata, November 20, 2009
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