« 消費増税の転嫁 不当な「買いたたき」を許すな | トップページ | Aigle(エーグル)のリュックはデザインが洗練されていますね »

2014年3月25日 (火)

大阪市長再選 議会と調整問われる「都」構想

The Yomiuri Shimbun March 24, 2014
Hashimoto’s reelection in Osaka leaves host of questions unanswered
大阪市長再選 議会と調整問われる「都」構想(3月24日付・読売社説)

Can Toru Hashimoto’s reelection as Osaka mayor advance his plan to create an “Osaka metropolis?” It is far from certain that his strategy of resigning to force an election will be effective in realizing his goal.

Hashimoto, the coleader of Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Restoration Party), won Sunday’s mayoral election in a landslide.

After his pet policy of reorganizing the city and Osaka Prefecture into an administrative entity akin to Tokyo stalled in the face of opposition from the prefectural and city assemblies, Hashimoto resigned his post as part of a strategy to seek a public mandate for his plan. During his election campaign, Hashimoto pledged to move the plan forward by removing opponents from a legal council established among representatives from the prefectural and city assemblies.

But major parties—including the Liberal Democratic Party, the Democratic Party of Japan and the Japanese Communist Party—did not field their own candidates, on the grounds that the election had no justification.

Hashimoto effectively ran uncontested.

Voter turnout was at the 20-percent level, far lower than the last mayoral poll in 2011, which put Hashimoto in the office for the first time.

There is much skepticism that the election results will do Hashimoto any good.

His plan appears to face an even more uncertain road ahead because his bid to achieve a mandate in the election has heightened his confrontation with the assemblies.

Unless he convinces New Komeito, with which he had cooperative ties, to accept his plan, there will be no prospect of making his plan a reality.

One immediate barrier is that the assemblies decide on changes in the members of the legal council tasked with debating the plan.

Also, the assemblies must give their approval before a referendum on whether to endorse the Osaka metropolis plan can be held.

Party uncertainty

Hashimoto has yet to make sufficient efforts to build a framework of cooperation with other parties to foster an agreement to realize his plan.

But the significance of Osaka voters entrusting Hashimoto to take the reins of the Osaka government again should not be taken lightly.

Firstly, Hashimoto should put an end to his fruitless confrontations with the city assembly.

“I want you to let me hold a mayoral race twice this year,” Hashimoto said before Sunday’s race.

If he intends to hold an election every time his plan hits a wall, he is bound to invite criticism for wasting taxpayers’ money.

The LDP’s and DPJ’s positions are also problematic.

There is nothing wrong with Hashimoto’s proposal to “create from scratch an administrative entity appropriate to the times” by rectifying duplicated administration by the Osaka prefectural and city governments.

If the parties reject this plan and say reforms can be carried out within the current framework, they should present a persuasive alternative.

After the reelection, Hashimoto will probably retain the post of Ishin no Kai coleader.

But for the time being, he has no choice but to concentrate his efforts on the Osaka metropolis plan.

Ishin no Kai is seeing a widening schism between members of its Osaka headquarters and Diet members in Tokyo, including co-leader Shintaro Ishihara, over issues, including the use of nuclear power.

The infighting is partly responsible for the party’s slumping approval rate.

Will Hashimoto be able to play the role he cast himself in, leading a “responsible party” that joins hands with the administration of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on a policy-by-policy basis?

The Osaka metropolis will not be the only issue, upon which his leadership will be tested.

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, March 24, 2014)
(2014年3月24日01時28分  読売新聞)


« 消費増税の転嫁 不当な「買いたたき」を許すな | トップページ | Aigle(エーグル)のリュックはデザインが洗練されていますね »





« 消費増税の転嫁 不当な「買いたたき」を許すな | トップページ | Aigle(エーグル)のリュックはデザインが洗練されていますね »