CDPJ leader Edano to resign over election setback

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Yukio Edano, leader of the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan, explains his intention to step down as party head at a meeting of the party’s executive members held in the Diet Building on Tuesday.

Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan leader Yukio Edano expressed his intention to step down as the party head Tuesday to take responsibility for the CDPJ’s defeat in the House of Representatives election.

Edano expressed his intention at a meeting of the party’s executive members in the Diet Building.

At the beginning of the meeting, he said: “It is my responsibility to take the next step so that our party will become an option to lead the government. I concluded that our party should face next summer’s House of Councillors election and the next lower house election under a new leader.”

Edano said he will officially resign on the last day of the special Diet session that will convene on Nov. 10.

The CDPJ’s internal rules require that a leadership election be held within 60 days after a leader resigns. Thus the party will quickly coordinate the date of its party leader election.

In the lower house election, the CDPJ fielded 240 candidates. The number was higher than a majority of the lower house, which has 465 lawmakers.

The CDPJ agreed with the Japanese Communist Party that if a power shift were realized, the JCP would cooperate with the new administration in a limited, noncabinet role.

It formed a united front with the JCP, the Democratic Party for the People, Reiwa Shinsengumi and the Social Democratic Party to consolidate support for one candidate in each of 213 single-seat constituencies.

However, many CDPJ candidates were defeated by ruling party rivals after close battles in constituencies, and the number of ballots the party received in the proportional representation race did not increase as expected.

The CDPJ took only 96 seats in the election, a decline of 14 from the 110 it held before the election.

The CDPJ also drew antipathy from the Japanese Trade Union Confederation (Rengo), which has been the largest supporter for the party, over the framework of the opposition cooperation involving the JCP.

A sizable number of CDPJ members demanded that the framework of opposition cooperation should be reviewed, and Edano and other executive members should be replaced.