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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 July 19 - 25  > Joint opposition candidate beats LDP rival in Sendai City mayoral election
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2017 July 19 - 25 TOP3 [POLITICS]

Joint opposition candidate beats LDP rival in Sendai City mayoral election

July 24, 2017

A joint candidate fielded by the Japanese Communist Party and three other opposition parties beat a Liberal Democratic Party-backed rival in the July 23 mayoral election of Sendai City, Miyagi Prefecture. The LDP suffered thus another defeat in a major local election after the Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly race.

The mayor-elect of Sendai City, the largest city in northeastern Japan, Koori Kazuko, received support from the JCP, Democratic, Social Democratic, and Liberal parties. The mayoral election was in effect a head-on clash between Koori and Sugawara Hironori, who was supported by the LDP and Komei Party. Koori received 165,452 votes, 16,000 more than Sugawara did. The voter turnout rate stood at 44.5 %.

The JCP worked hard for Koori’s victory based on a 12-point agreement which includes the implementation of people-oriented policies in accordance with the principles of the Constitution, an introduction of a 35-student class size limit in all grades in all elementary and junior-high schools in the city, the establishment of a scholarship program, and the construction of more authorized daycare centers for children.

The four opposition parties working with concerned citizens on July 20 held a rally to appeal to increase voters support with 1,700 people taking part. JCP Dietmember Kokuta Keiji and DP parliamentarians Sakurai Mitsuru and Okada Katsuya joined the rally and expressed their determination to win the race.

Following Koori’s electoral success, JCP Secretariat Head Koike Akira said to the press that the election outcome represents not only Sendai residents’ hope for a better city government but also their falling support for the LDP and the Abe government. He went on to note that this result confirms that the collaboration between the opposition parties and concerned citizens can bring about an election victory.

Koike pointed out that based on this electoral result, the party will urge Prime Minister Abe Shinzo to dissolve the Lower House and hold a general election. Koike noted that the JCP will speed up talks with other opposition parties on cooperation for a House of Representatives election.
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