By-elections in Tokyo, Shimane, Nagasaki Prefectures See Lowest Voter Turnout; Reasons Likely Include Fallout from LDP Political Funds Scandal

The Yomiuri Shimbun
A by-election candidate clasps the hands of a voter in Koto Ward, Tokyo.

All three by-elections for the House of Representatives held on Sunday had the lowest voter turnout ever, according to the election administration commissions of Tokyo, Shimane and Nagasaki prefectures.

Voter turnout for Shimane Constituency No. 1 was 54.62%, down from 61.23% in the 2021 general election. Tokyo Constituency No. 15 saw 40.70% turnout, significantly lower than the 58.73% in 2021. Nagasaki Constituency No. 3 had a turnout of 35.45%, which was 25.48 percentage points below 60.93% in 2021.

By-elections tend to have lower voter turnout than general elections, which are held across the nation. Factors that likely contributed to the lowest turnout include the ruling Liberal Democratic Party’s decision not to field candidates in Tokyo Constituency No. 15 and Nagasaki Constituency No. 3, as well as the spread of political distrust stemming from LDP factions’ violation of the Political Funds Control Law.