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Japan’s New Ruling Party to Launch Coalition Gov’t

Posted September. 01, 2009 07:48,   


The Democratic Party of Japan, which took power after a landslide victory in yesterday’s general elections, has begun preparations for the power transition and plans to establish a coalition government with the Social Democratic Party and the People’s New Party.

Democratic Party leader Yukio Hatoyama, who is set to become prime minister in mid-September, suggested in a meeting with party executives yesterday a joint policy discussion on a coalition government with the two minor opposition parties. The framework for the coalition will likely take shape next week.

The party will postpone the appointment of key posts including Cabinet positions, finance and foreign ministers, and party secretary general that was scheduled yesterday.

Consequently, the launch of the transition team to be led by these posts was also delayed since the likely candidate for foreign minister, Democratic Party Secretary-General Katsuya Okada, must negotiate with the two opposition parties in creating the coalition government. Certain party officials say he should remain as secretary-general.

Ichiro Ozawa is also likely to remain acting leader in charge of election strategies ahead of Upper House elections in July next year.

According to the final vote tally, the Democratic Party claimed 308 seats, followed by 119 for the Liberal Democratic Party, 21 for New Komeito Party, nine for the Japanese Communist Party, seven for the Social Democratic Party, three for the People’s New Party, and 13 for independents and other parties.