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HOME  > Past issues  > 2021 September 29 - October 5  > 22-day general election campaign expected to start on Oct.19
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2021 September 29 - October 5 TOP3 [POLITICS]

22-day general election campaign expected to start on Oct.19

October 5, 2021

The government convened an extraordinary Diet session on October 4, and both Houses of Representatives and Councilors at each plenary session elected Liberal Democratic Party President Kishida Fumio as the new Prime Minister followed by the inauguration of the Kishida Cabinet under the LDP-Komei coalition regime.

Key members of the Abe/Suga governments continue to hold important positions in the Kishida Cabinet. Matsuno Hirokazu, a close aide to the former Prime Minister Abe Shinzo and the former Education Minister under the Abe government, assumes the post of Chief Cabinet Secretary. Motegi Toshimitsu and Kishi Nobuo, former Foreign Minister and former Defense Minister, respectively, under the Suga government, remain at their posts. Out of 20 Cabinet members, including PM Kishida himself, eleven belong to the ultra conservative parliamentarians' league affiliated with the pro-Yasukuni Shrine ultra nationalist association Nippon Kaigi.

Reportedly, PM Kishida intends to dissolve the Lower House on October 14 and to officially announce the start of the general election campaign period to be October 19 with elections held on October 31.

Japanese Communist Party Chair Shii Kazuo on October 4 held a press conference in the Diet building. Asked for the JCP response to the election schedule by reporters, Shii said, "We have been demanding that not only interpellation sessions but also Budget Committee meetings be held in order to thoroughly discuss anti-coronavirus measures and to show the general public the clear path Japan should take before the general election. However, according to the supposed election schedule, Budget Committee meetings will not take place."

Shii criticized the LDP for continuing to refuse convocation of a Diet session during the nearly one month of its presidential election campaign. He said, "Eventually, it agreed to hold the session, but said it wants to go on with the election without even holding Budget Committee meetings. Holding the general election without prior Diet discussions on the budget is very preposterous."

Shii added, "If the general election campaign period commences on October 19, we will take up that challenge and work to deal a blow to the Kishida government. We will work hard to achieve a change of government to form a new government composed of united opposition parties."
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