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2008年9月16日 (火)

小沢代表3選

(Sep. 9, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun
DPJ must show itself ready to govern
小沢代表3選 政権公約に説得力を持たせよ(9月9日付・読売社説)

The task to be fulfilled by the Democratic Party of Japan, led by Ichiro Ozawa, is to craft a convincing campaign manifesto for the anticipated House of Representatives election.
小沢民主党に今、求められているのは、説得力のある次期衆院選の政権公約(マニフェスト)づくりである。

To achieve the goal, the leading opposition party should not avoid holding full-scale intraparty debates on key policy issues. Its seemingly self-imposed ban on such debates during its presidential election should not be repeated.
そのためには、代表選では“封印”された本格的な党内論議を再び避けてはなるまい。

Ozawa was reelected uncontested for his third term as party leader Monday. It is a pity that no policy debates were conducted among multiple candidates.
民主党の小沢代表が無投票で3選された。複数の候補による政策論争がなかったのは残念だ。

We believe that not only the DPJ's more than 260,000 members and active supporters, but the voting public in general wanted to hear the political views and basic policies of party leadership candidates, among whom the winner would be the DPJ's candidate for prime minister.
投票できなかった26万人超の党員・サポーターだけでなく、国民も、開かれた代表選を通じて、民主党の「首相候補」の政見や基本政策を聞きたかっただろう。

For its part, the DPJ could have heightened the quality of its yet-to-be-completed manifesto through debates during the party's presidential election, while also seizing the opportunity to attract further public attention.
民主党も、代表選の論争を通じて、政権公約の質を高めるとともに、国民の関心を集めることができたはずだ。

Within the party, some members are expressing serious concern that the public's attention is being so strongly focused on the Liberal Democratic Party's presidential election that the DPJ may find its presence overshadowed by the ruling party.
党内では、世間の注目が自民党総裁選に集中し、自らの存在が埋没しかねない、との危機感が出ている。

===

What price party unity?

The DPJ is paying the price for not conducting a competitive party presidential election for fear that rifts created by the election might remain within the party ahead of the lower house election.
衆院選を前に党内に亀裂が残るとして、代表選を回避したことのツケとも言えよう。

Ozawa unveiled a set of fundamental policies that would steer a DPJ government, including a system to guarantee minimum pension payments funded by tax revenues, child benefits, and an income compensation system for each farm household. The policies do not differ from the DPJ's manifesto for last summer's House of Councillors election.
小沢代表が発表した政権構想は、税方式による最低保障年金制度、子ども手当、農家の戸別所得補償などが柱だ。昨夏の参院選公約とほとんど変わらない。

Ozawa said, "It would be unreasonable if it was different [from its previous election promises]." However, more than a few party members say it is necessary to create a carefully thought-out manifesto to ensure the proposed policies can be enacted when the DPJ takes the reins of government.
小沢代表は「変わったらおかしい」と言うが、党内でも「政権をとった際、確実に実現できるよう、公約をしっかりさせることが必要だ」との意見が少なくない。

Many observers regard the DPJ's overwhelming victory in the upper house election mainly as the result of blunders by the LDP, including the pension records fiasco--not the product of active public support for the DPJ's campaign promises.
参院選での民主党の大勝は、民主党の公約への積極的な支持よりも、年金記録漏れなど自民党の失策によるところが大きい、との見方が一般的だ。

For the DPJ's election promises to be credible, it is indispensable for the party to explain where it will find the required financial resources.
公約への信頼性を高めるには、財源の裏打ちが不可欠である。

===

Promises must be paid for

Ozawa's proposed abolition of provisional tax rates on gasoline would cost the government 2.6 trillion yen in revenue in addition to the 15.3 trillion yen needed to fund the DPJ's promises from the upper house election.
小沢代表の政権構想では、15・3兆円分の参院選公約に、2・6兆円を要するガソリン税の暫定税率廃止などが加わっている。

Ozawa has said, "Among bureaucrat-apportioned budget allocations, plenty have strayed from their original intent or are unnecessary items, including special account budgets and fiscal resources for road construction and maintenance." However, the public will not be satisfied with his mere abstract explanation. Ozawa should provide a specific breakdown of how he intends to reallocate financial resources.
「官僚が作った予算には、特別会計、道路財源など、目的外や不要なものがいっぱいある」という小沢代表の抽象的な説明だけでは、国民は十分納得すまい。財源の具体的な内訳を示すべきだ。

As for the diplomatic field, Ozawa's platform stresses constructing a solid and equal Japan-U.S. relationship. However, how can he balance this with the party's policy of not dispatching Self-Defense Forces personnel to the Indian Ocean or Iraq?
政権構想は外交面で、「強固で対等な日米関係を築く」と強調した。インド洋にもイラクにも自衛隊を派遣しない党の方針と、果たしてどう両立させるのか。

While Ozawa labeled the SDF's refueling mission in the Indian Ocean a violation of the Constitution, many DPJ lawmakers do not agree with his argument.
小沢代表は、インド洋での給油活動を「憲法違反」と決めつけるが、民主党内でも、その論理に賛成できない議員の方が多い。

That discrepancy within the DPJ aside, it is quite possible that party dynamics may work to avoid intraparty discussions from now on, with an eye to an early dissolution of the lower house.
そうした党内の矛盾に加え、早期の衆院解散を視野に入れ、今後も党内論議を避ける力学が働く可能性は否定できない。

If the DPJ can overcome these issues, it can show its ability to take the reins of government.
だが、その問題を克服してこそ、国民に政権担当能力を示すことになる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 9, 2008)
(2008年9月9日01時57分  読売新聞)

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