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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 August 22 - 28  > JCP Koike on LDP presidential race: Abe's victory won't mean public approval of constitutional revision
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2018 August 22 - 28 TOP3 [POLITICS]

JCP Koike on LDP presidential race: Abe's victory won't mean public approval of constitutional revision

August 28, 2018

Japanese Communist Party Secretariat Head Koike Akira on August 28 held a press conference in the Diet building and, in commenting on the Liberal Democratic Party presidential election where constitutional amendments are becoming a key issue, said, "Abe's victory will not mean public approval of constitutional revision."

Prime Minister Abe Shinzo earlier on the day officially announced his candidacy for the LDP presidential election slated for September 20. He is eager to submit a bill to amend the existing Constitution, including Article 9, to the extraordinary Diet session this coming autumn.

JCP Koike pointed out, "During past national elections, Abe said almost nothing about constitutional revision to voters, but when it comes to the LDP presidential election, he clearly expresses his strong desire to change the Constitution in order to make it an issue. It's unacceptable for him to try to impose this issue on the Diet as well as on the general public."

Koike made further reference to the fact that PM Abe gave a positive response to a request made on August 27 from an LDP faction headed by Aso Taro (Deputy Prime Minister, Finance Minister) that a national referendum on constitutional change be conducted before the Upper House election is held next summer.

Koike said, "While Abe's overwhelming victory in the LDP presidential election is predicted, the Cabinet support rate remains below 50%, and 49% of the public are 'opposed' to the submission of the amendment bill this autumn, according to a Kyodo News survey conducted in August."

He continued to say, "LDP Dietmembers are all pro-amendment. They are in a political group whose mindset is very different from that of the general public. Whatever the outcome of their group's leadership race, they cannot claim that constitutional amendments have gained public support.

Reportedly, the election will be a showdown between Abe and Ishiba Shigeru, former LDP secretary general, and Abe is holding the lead.

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