Japan Press Weekly
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Shii comments on what JCP must learn from Upper House election
The Japanese Communist Party held a lecture meeting on August 3 in Tokyo to commemorate the 88th anniversary of the partyfs founding. JCP Chair Shii Kazuo stated that the JCP has much to learn from the House of Councilors election in July.
Expressing thanks to peoplefs support for the JCP in the election, the JCP chair apologized for the disappointing lack of JCP strength resulting in the loss of Diet seats and total votes for the JCP. He said that more than 3,000 messages in regard to the election result have come to the JCP from both inside and outside the party. Shii said that the JCP will take the lessons learned seriously so that the party can make a comeback in the simultaneous local elections and the next national election.
Chair Shii admitted that the JCP strategy during the election campaign had some weak points. The JCP was weak in providing a new prospect to voters who were disappointed with the Democratic Party of Japan government that had replaced the Liberal Democratic-Komei government and were thus searching for a true alternative.
The weakness was particularly apparent in the last minute arguments concerning a plan to increase the consumption tax rate. The JCP played an important part in increasing public opinion against the proposed consumption tax hike, but failed to link it to advance for the JCP candidates. Shii said that this was because the JCP failed to appeal constructively to voters on how politics should be changed, using an easy-to-understand catch phrase.
He said that the JCP in the future should deliver constructive proposals to the public as a party calling for major reforms. The immediate task for the JCP is to strive to form a majority group opposing the consumption tax increase, and to carry out a joint struggle with political parties, organizations and individuals objecting to a cut in proportional representation seats.
Shii stressed that in relation to the planned cut in parliamentary seats, arguments must not be limited to an issue concerned with the number of parliamentarians. He said that the need is to initiate a fundamental discussion on the entire election system.
Shii closed his lecture entitled gEra of explorationh by saying that Japan is, in a sense, at an eve of the start of a new direction in politics, and if the prospects in the JCP Program are understood by many people, it would provide a great strength to move the society and history forward.
-Akahata, August 4, 2010
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