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2014年3月 4日 (火)

衆院選挙制度 第三者機関で党利党略を排せ

The Yomiuri Shimbun March 03, 2014
Draw on advice of 3rd-party panel to exclude party interests from reform
衆院選挙制度 第三者機関で党利党略を排せ(3月3日付・読売社説)

The ruling and opposition parties should not waste any more time and make solid progress toward election system reform.
 与野党はこれ以上時間を浪費せず、選挙制度改革を動かすべきだ。

A third-party panel of experts is expected to be set up under the speaker of the House of Representatives to discuss the details.
 衆院議長の下に有識者らによる第三者機関が設置され、選挙制度改革を協議する見通しになった。

The latest development is a result of the ruling coalition of the Liberal Democratic Party and New Komeito accepting the request made by five opposition parties—the Democratic Party of Japan, Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Restoration Party), Your Party, Yui no To and the People’s Life Party.
民主党、日本維新の会、みんなの党、結いの党、生活の党の5党の要求を自民、公明両党が受け入れた。

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe proposed in June last year the establishment of a third-party organ to find a way out of deadlocked discussions between the ruling and opposition camps over election system reform.
 与野党の選挙制度改革を巡る議論が暗礁に乗り上げたため、安倍首相が第三者機関を設けて事態の打開を図るよう提案したのは、昨年6月のことである。

Yet both sides only asserted that it was rational to reach a conclusion to the issue through discussions by legislators and failed to reach a consensus. This was a pathetic development, indeed.
 だが、与野党は「国会議員による議論で結論を得るのが筋」と主張するばかりで、合意を形成できなかった。あまりにお粗末だ。

The opposition parties have called for the establishment of the third-party organ because, they argued, the ruling parties have refused to accept their proposals. One of the two proposals calls for adding five seats in three populous prefectures while scrapping a total of 30 seats in as many prefectures, and the other calls for cutting a total of 18 seats in the same number of less populated prefectures while newly allocating a total of three seats to two populous prefectures.
 野党側が第三者機関の設置を求めたのは、小選挙区の定数を「5増30減」か、「3増18減」とする2案を提示したが、与党は受け入れないからだという。

The LDP won 80 percent of the seats allocated to the single-seat electoral districts in the previous lower house election, and probably does not want to touch the quota of the seats in the single-seat electoral districts, whose adjustment is highly likely to be met with resistance. The LDP is calling for a cut of 30 seats allocated through proportional representation.
 前回衆院選で小選挙区の議席の8割を占めた自民党は、調整が難航する小選挙区の定数に手を付けたくないのだろう。比例選定数の30削減を主張している。

In the end, both the ruling and opposition parties are pursuing their own party interests. They have only proved that when it comes to reform, considering the relative merits and demerits of the parties’ proposals, they cannot achieve anything on their own.
 結局、与野党ともに党利党略である。自らの利害得失が絡む改革は、自力で実現できないことを証明しただけではないか。

The important point in having the third-party organ discuss the election system is to have the entity made up of a small number of experts who are detached from party interests.
 第三者機関で選挙制度を検討するに当たって肝要なのは、メンバーを各党の利害から離れた少人数の有識者で構成することだ。

Parties should also agree in advance that they will give serious consideration to the proposals recommended by the experts and incorporate them into legislation.
 有識者の出す提言を各党が尊重して、立法化することも、事前に取り決めておかねばならない。

Make proposals binding

The election system is directly tied to the rise and fall of the parties. Any proposal may induce opposition from both camps. Yet it will be meaningless to pass discussion of the issue into the hands of the experts unless their proposals are binding.
 選挙制度は、各党の消長に直結する。どんな案であっても、与野党から反発が出るだろう。提言に拘束力が担保されなければ、有識者に議論を委ねる意味はない。

The DPJ and other opposition parties have proposed a reduction in the number of lower house seats as an issue to be discussed by the third-party panel.
 第三者機関の扱う議題として、民主党などは定数削減の議論を提案している。

They assert that both the ruling and opposition parties should “cut our own flesh” by reducing the number of lower house legislators, as the public has been called on to assume a heavier burden with the hike in the consumption tax rate in April. Yet such assertions, seemingly made to curry public favor, smack of populism.
 だが、4月の消費税率引き上げで国民に負担を求める以上、与野党も国会議員を削減して「身を切る」というのは、極めて大衆迎合的な発想である。

An attempt to cut their own flesh would be far more effective if it involved cutting the annual allowances paid to Diet members and party subsidies.
身を切るのであれば歳費や政党交付金を削減する方が、よほど効果的だろう。

The Supreme Court ruled last year that the results in the single-seat electoral districts in the lower house election held in December 2012 were “in a state of unconstitutionality,” due to the vote-value disparity.
 最高裁は一昨年12月の衆院選を1票の格差の観点から「違憲状態」と判断した。

It is important to respond to the request from the court, but there are more aspects involved in the election system reform to consider.
司法の要請に応えることは重要だが、選挙制度改革はそれだけではない。

Just 20 years have passed since the enactment of the laws related to political reform, which centered on the introduction of the current system that combines single-seat constituencies with the proportional representation system. Various merits and demerits of the system have already become obvious.
 現行の小選挙区比例代表並立制導入を柱とした政治改革関連法が成立してちょうど20年たつ。制度の様々なメリット、デメリットが既に明らかになっている。

The third-party organ must examine the system comprehensively. We hope for an open discussion that takes a long hard look at the real substance of the election system.
 第三者機関は、制度を総合的に点検すべきだ。選挙制度の本質を見据えた議論を期待したい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, March, 3, 2014)
(2014年3月3日02時12分  読売新聞)

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