Japan Press Weekly
[Advanced search]
Past issues
Special issues
Fact Box
Feature Articles
Mail to editor
Mail magazine
HOME  > Past issues  > 2015 June 3 - 9  > All constitutional scholars in parliamentary hearing criticize war legislation as unconstitutional
> List of Past issues
Bookmark and Share
2015 June 3 - 9 TOP3 [POLITICS]

All constitutional scholars in parliamentary hearing criticize war legislation as unconstitutional

June 7, 2015

Akahata ‘current’ column

“Well, it is certainly true, but, ah…,” muttered Funada Hajime of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party on June 4 at a meeting of the House of Representatives Commission on the Constitution after each of three constitutional scholars, unsworn witnesses to the Diet, declared the proposed war legislation as unconstitutional.

It was a particularly heavy blow to the LDP when Waseda University Professor Hasebe Yasuo, who was recommended by the ruling party itself as an unsworn witness, pointed out that the Cabinet approval of Japan’s exercise of the collective self-defense right cannot be explained by the government’s conventional view on the Constitution and it will damage the legal principle behind constitutionalism.

On the following day at a meeting of the Lower House Special Committee on the war legislation, opposition parties repeatedly quoted Hasebe’s remark which questions the legitimacy of the war legislation-related bills. On the other hand, lawmakers of the ruling LDP say that they made a wrong choice.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga Yoshihide at a press conference insisted that there are many scholars who regard the war legislation as constitutional. But, who are these “many scholars”? Members of a young lawyers’ group conducted some research into this assertion.

According to their website, 189 constitutional scholars approved a statement opposing the war legislation, indicating that they think the proposed war bills are unconstitutional. In contrast, those who consider the bills as constitutional are hard to find. After spending hours in their search, the names of three scholars were found who all happened to be close friends with Prime Minister Abe Shinzo.

The three expert witnesses’ disapproval of the war legislation was not a result of a mistake in choice. Unless the handful of Abe’s friends are deliberately chosen, the vast majority of constitutional scholars will come up with the same conclusion.
> List of Past issues
  Copyright (c) Japan Press Service Co., Ltd. All right reserved