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2009年5月29日 (金)

社説:党首討論 毎週開いたらどうか

(Mainichi Japan) May 28, 2009
LDP, DPJ leaders should have weekly debates
社説:党首討論 毎週開いたらどうか

Wednesday's debate between Prime Minister Taro Aso, who heads the Liberal Democratic Party, and Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) leader Yukio Hatoyama apparently disappointed a large number of voters. Hatoyama had drawn more attention from the public than Aso as it was the first time since he assumed the post that he had held a debate with the prime minister. However, it was regrettable that the debate did not sufficiently focus on specific issues.
 拍子抜けした人は多いだろう。もちろん、麻生太郎首相と鳩山由紀夫民主党代表による27日の党首討論である。とりわけ注目されたのは新代表に就任した鳩山氏だ。しかし、「国民目線か、上から目線か」といったキャッチフレーズは踊ったものの論戦のポイントを絞りきれず散漫になったのは残念だ。

After touching upon North Korea's recent nuclear test at the beginning of the debate, Hatoyama spent much time explaining his slogan, "fraternalism." Hatoyama said, "I want to create a society in which people can feel others' happiness as their own happiness," only to be rebuffed by Aso as being too vague. "The important thing is not ideals or abstract argument, but realistic discussions," Aso countered.
 冒頭、北朝鮮の核実験に触れた後、鳩山氏が時間を費やしたのは、自ら掲げる「友愛」の説明だった。鳩山氏は「人の幸せを自分の幸せと思える社会を作りたい」などと言葉を重ねたが、麻生首相からは「問題は理念、抽象論ではなく現実論だ」と切り返されるだけだった。

The opposition leader then cited an example of a community school in which volunteers in the neighborhood play an important role in classes at the local elementary school, but it was not specific enough.
 そこで地域のボランティアが協力して小学校の授業を進めるコミュニティースクールの事例を紹介したものの、今度は説明不足だった。

Hatoyama apparently attempted to talk about a wide diversity of topics but failed to hold in-depth discussions on each issue. Hatoyama has criticized the Aso administration as being a bureaucrat-dominated administration. If so, he should have focused on the details of the 14 trillion yen fiscal 2009 supplementary budget -- such as a 11.7 billion yen project to build an art facility that displays works including anime and manga, which he sarcastically called an "Anime Hall of Fame" -- as well as the details of retired bureaucrats' practices of landing lucrative jobs in businesses they once supervised.
 結局、多くのテーマを詰め込もうとして、いずれも消化不良に終わった印象がある。鳩山氏が麻生政権を「官主導」と批判するなら、鳩山氏自ら「アニメの殿堂」と皮肉った「国立メディア芸術総合センター」建設など、討論の後半で触れた約14兆円の09年度補正予算案の具体的な中身や官僚の天下りの実態に、まず的を絞って切り込むべきだった。

Prime Minister Aso repeatedly brought up the indictment of a state-paid secretary to Hatoyama's predecessor, Ichiro Ozawa, over a political donation scandal, apparently believing that it was the DPJ's sore point.
 対する麻生首相は、これが最大の攻め口と考えたのだろう。再三、言及したのは小沢一郎・民主党代表代行の政治資金問題だった。

Aso did not say whether he will support the DPJ's decision to submit to the Diet a bill that would ban corporate political donations within three years, and said, "The problem is that the current law hasn't been observed. The proposal on a ban on corporate donations is an attempt to sidestep the issue." The prime minister also pointed out that Ozawa has failed to fulfill his accountability for the scandal.
 民主党が企業・団体による献金とパーティー券購入を3年後に廃止する法案を今国会に提出する方針を決めた点に対しても、首相は賛否は明確にせず、小沢氏の公設第1秘書が逮捕・起訴された点を指摘。「今の法律も守られていないのが問題。献金廃止は論理のすり替えだ」と反論し、小沢氏が説明責任を果たしていないとも強調した。

Hatoyama countered by criticizing law enforcers for failing to investigate an LDP legislator allegedly involved in a similar scandal.
He was fully aware that Aso would bring up the scandal involving Ozawa's aide, but Hatoyama's remarks demonstrated that the party has failed to coordinate views among its members over how to respond to the case.
 鳩山氏も自民党議員に捜査が及んでいない点など捜査当局批判を口にしたが、首相が小沢氏の問題を取り上げるのは承知していたはずだ。この問題にどう対応するか、党としてきちんと整理されていない姿も露呈することとなった。

As the next House of Representatives election draws near, debates between the two major party leaders provide voters with opportunities to judge whether the LDP should remain in government or the DPJ should take over the reins of government, and who is more suited to serve as prime minister -- Aso or Hatoyama. Moreover, their discussions will clarify important policy issues during the election campaign. As Aso said in the debate, the two leaders should have bold discussions on defense and social security issues. It is hoped that Hatoyama will express his clear opinions on these issues in the next debate.
 次期衆院選が近づく中、党首討論は、自民、民主のどちらが政権を担当すべきか、麻生首相と鳩山氏のどちらが首相にふさわしいか、有権者の判断材料となる。党首同士の議論を通じ、衆院選の争点も明確になるはずだ。麻生首相がこの日語った通り、安全保障や社会保障のあり方など、この国の将来について骨太の議論も聞きたいところだ。鳩山氏の次回の討論に期待することとしたい。

The two leaders are urged to hold a policy debate every week until the prime minister dissolves the House of Representatives for a snap general election. If the debate is not long enough to have in-depth discussion, it should be extended.
 この際、衆院解散・総選挙まで党首討論は毎週開いたらどうか。時間不足で消化不良になるというのなら時間を延長してもかまわない。

毎日新聞 2009年5月28日 東京朝刊

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