politics

Lawmaker to quit LDP over infidelity scandal

30 Comments

Liberal Democratic Party lower house lawmaker Toshinao Nakagawa quit the ruling party on Friday following reports of his involvement in an extramarital affair.

Nakagawa, who resigned earlier this week from his post as parliamentary vice economy, trade and industry minister, was urged by the LDP's executives to voluntarily leave the party amid stalled Diet deliberations.

On Friday, he gave notice of his departure and the party accepted it.

The main opposition Democratic Party has also been seeking Nakagawa's resignation from parliament and will continue to pressure him to do so. But the government's top spokesman, Yoshihide Suga, said Thursday it is up to Nakagawa to decide what course of action to take.

Nakagawa effectively admitted to the affair Tuesday in a Facebook post in which he apologized to constituents for his "lack of virtue."

"I want to spend the rest of my life redeeming myself to my wife and family," he wrote in another post Thursday.

He denied specific allegations made by Japanese tabloid media that he had lived a double life with another woman and was reported to the police for stalking.

Nakagawa was elected to the House of Representatives in 2012 from a constituency in Hiroshima.

His father is Hidenao Nakagawa, a former LDP lawmaker who once served as chief Cabinet secretary.

© KYODO

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Guess he's racked with guilt. Compared with the antics of the western politicians like drugs, rent boys and sex workers, I can't see why he needs to resign over a simple affair.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

zichi - I had no idea that western politicians were all so sleazy compared to Japanese politicians.

I get that you love Japan and all, but silly statements like that is embarrassing.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Politicians are pretty much the same everywhere. That said... an affair is not a huge deal compared to some things other working politicians have been and still are involved in.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Another example of the nepotism and lack of qualifications that go into politics here.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@ zichi

I don't see the need to compare western politicians to Japanese ones. Many in the western world have resigned over love affair scandals. Heck, a president was hounded over it for years and years and still is. And by the way, there have been many here in Japan who have had to resign over that as well. I remember one prime minister who had a geisha and openly said that it was not anyone's business at all. The press and the people had a very different opinion. I think he lasted two months. And, yeah, this guy should resign over it. That is the way it is throughout most of the world, not counting France of course. If you believe differently, than you might be the one living in a closet not Clamenza.

By the way, how many times have we had Japanese politicians quit because of sordid scandals here? Misappropriations of funds, paternity leave to have sex with another while wife was having a baby, mob connects, crying politicians, and so many other things. The list is long and infamous. Japanese politicians are no better.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

@sandiegoluv

yes there are politicians who have done worse. But still don't see why he should resign from the Diet just because he had an affair. Step down from the government, yes. Should we always try to hold people to higher standards than what many others do? I did not state the Japanese politicians were free of corruption. But the post was about just one politician not a bunch of them.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@zichi -

No one, least of all his wife, cares what politicians in other countries have done.

@ zichi - I see where he is coming from. One has nothing to do with the other. And you were the one who mentioned politicians in other countries first. Also, he has a good point. I also doubt that his wife cares one way or the other way what politicians in other countries have done. Why should she? She has got her own problem now.

So what gives you the right to set the gold standard? No mention of divorce?

Did I miss something here? He/She never mentioned divorce and how is he/she setting the gold standard? My apologies, but I didn't get it. Maybe you could elaborate on where you meant.

Also, him resigning from the diet is just the way it is and should be. It is the way around most of the world, except for France, I suppose. Sorry, but I do think we should hold politicians to a high standard. They are supposed to be of and exhibit a higher moral fiber than the common man.

But the post was about just one politician not a bunch of them.

But YOU were the one that mentioned other politicians.

@clemenza - I don't think zichi is being callous here. He just doesn't understand why this politician has to quit.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

I can't see why he needs to resign over a simple affair.

Saying this, then inexplicably throwing the west under the bus as an excuse is in my opinion very callous

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

sandiegoluv

First many on JP want Japan to have the same standards as those of the west except when they disagree with them. There are those who are critical of aspects because they are different than the standards of the west.

I have no idea what the wife of Toshinao Nakagawa feels or thinks but there are people who are not concerned about their partner having an affair. The affair is the problem between them if indeed it is a problem. Bill Clinton had many affairs but he and his wife remain together, at least publicly.

Not so long, people from certain classes would all have affairs including the likes of the members of royal families.

Toshinao Nakagawa resigned from the government and the Diet. I don't see the need for him to resign from the Diet over his affair and that would be judged by his voters at the next election.

Having an affair is not a crime or illegal. Therefore it should be kept in proportion.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@sandiegoluv

 I suppose. Sorry, but I do think we should hold politicians to a high standard. They are supposed to be of and exhibit a higher moral fiber than the common man.

Not if they haven't done anything criminal or illegal.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"different from standards of the west"

Oh, if I had a nickel for every time I heard the old "You just don't get Japan and her unique culture" as a blanket excuse for every scandal.

Yet zichi, you turn around in the next breath and compare Japan to the west.

But this next little nugget is really hard to swallow;

Having an affair is not a crime or illegal. Therefore it should be kept in proportion

Got it. If something is legal, its perfectly ethical as well.

I guess I just need to live in Japan a bit longer to fully grasp that uniqueness.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

@zilch - Actually there are many in Japan who want him to quit just because of it. To be honest, western values has nothing to do with it. Don't you remember Sosuke Uno more than 25 years ago? He said it was none of the public's business. The JP public had a completely different opinion and he had to quit.

Now as for what used to happen not so long ago, actually that was quite a long time ago.

Having an affair is not a crime or illegal.

Very true. But reality is that politicians must behave themselves way better than this. Respectfully, I really don't understand why this is so hard for you to understand. It is a slam dunk issue. If you are a politician, you gotta behave a lot more ethically than that. While it is not a crime, it is one of ethics. The public does not only want politicians who are corrupt, they want ethical ones as well. I doubt he will succeed in the next election. Good day.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

You guys here probably arguing more than Nakagawa and his wife and other one.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@sandiegoluv

Respectfully, I really don't understand why this is so hard for you to understand. It is a slam dunk issue.

I don't understand why you think a politician who hasn't broken the law or committed a crime should have to resign from the Diet if it didn't affect his job. I don't think politicians should be held to any higher standards than anyone else. They are not gods or super humans. They are people. I think it was probably correct for him to resign from his government post but could have kept his Diet position until the next election when his voters would decide on that future.

For you it a slam dunk and for clemenza but I hold my own opinions and views which you both need to respect without adding insults. We don't elect the Japanese politicians so our opinions are only academic.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Good point, Fact check! Thanks.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Born with a silver spoon in his mouth

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@smithinjapan - Um, are you saying that he did not campaign on honesty and integrity? He might be the first Japanese politician not to then and if that were the case, it would be okay, I guess. Frankly, don't we want honest and truthful politicians? I thought that was the deal. This is an ethics issues. A morals issue. Most voters want people who are of a high level of both attributes, not some guy who fools around on his wife and honestly, if the guy can't be honest to his own wife, then how can he be honest with his constituents? Did she know about the affair and okay? Not really sure, but I would seriously doubt it. This is not a new thing in Japan. These types of love affair scandals have taken down quite a few Japanese politicians and I think that we actually need to lower the bar for them now. Just saying.

 those saying it should be done because a) one country is more moral or what have you is ridiculous.

Did someone say that? If so, then it is ridiculous.

Are you saying we should all take a step back or a step towards the Taliban and make cheating on a spouse illegal in the future just because kiddie porn RIGHTLY became illegal?

How in the heck did you jump to that? That is not what he was implying at all.

It baffles the mind that you cannot see any differences between adult trysts and an adult having pornographic images of a child. Well done!

Gotta agree with you there. One is vicious and perverted beyond anything understandable. While the other is just an unethical tryst. But for the simple fact that he lacks the ability to be honest with his own family, will go out of his way to actually have an affair behind his wife's back makes him an unethical politician. And the more that are weeded out, the better. I say. But that is only me.

zichi, clemanza and smithinjapan. It is good to exchange views as long as we can keep it respectful, open our minds and try to understand. Even though I don't agree with you two, I will think about my own opinion as well. Best wishes.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

@sandiegoluv 

@zilch - Actually there are many in Japan who want him to quit just because of it.

How do you know that or you are assuming the people would also hold your opinion?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Great posts zichi. No one expects CEOs, lawyers, teachers, tradies or truckies to resign after admitting they've had an affair. Why should politicians be held to different standards?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The party of family values and traditions? Reminds me of the US Republican Party. Do as I say and not as I do. An example - these conservatives are completely against same sex marriage because they think it is a threat to 'real' marriage. I'll tell you want is a real threat to family values - divorces and extramarital affairs within opposite-sex marriage.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The guy's relationship with his wife is irrelevant to his ability to govern.

If he got caught doing something illegal, or was shown to be incompetent in his work, then he should resign.

This is as weird to me as the Americans going after Clinton for blood was back in the '90s, particularly when Clinton had the economy running well.

Some people just love a witch hunt.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

How do you know that or you are assuming the people would also hold your opinion?

@ zichi - Simple. I asked quite a few people. A lot of them said that he should resign and a few said not.

@goldorak -Those people do not campaign on a platform of integrity and fighting for the people. The politicians do. So, there is less leeway for them than those other people. Plus we don't those people into their jobs by what they said.

@ Strangerland - Well played. Great post. I hated the way the republicans went after Clinton and even kind of gave him a pass because of their behavior to find and anything and everything they could to smear President Clinton, so I will think about this one more deeply. And just so you know, I don't like witch hunts. Greatly appreciate a post that makes me think twice. Good job.

@Pukey 2 - Can't stand the Republican Party. Bunch of lying hypocrites.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

@sandiegoluv 

Your statement changed from

@zilch - Actually there are many in Japan who want him to quit just because of it.

to another one

 zichi - Simple. I asked quite a few people. A lot of them said that he should resign and a few said not.

So a few becomes the many. You ask a few you work with?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@zitch - Check Cambridge Dictionary. It says, "Quite a few - Quite a large number of . . . I also said, "A lot of them. . . A lot of also mean many. Please see the dictionary as well. So, my statement did not change at all. Actually, yes at work and in a FB post as well. Have a great night.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

To be honest though, this is the first time I am actually hearing anyone questioning if he should stay on or not. In the past when these types of scandals have happened, the politicians here didn't stick around for very long. They bowed to the cameras and quit. The LDP and the voters were happy and felt that by quitting the offending politician was taking responsibility for what MOST consider to be inappropriate behavior. Name a Japanese politician who has had sex outside of his marriage and didn't resign from his post in the past thirty years. I really can't remember any at all.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@sandiegoluv so much time on your hands in work to have a discussion about something not so important when compared with more major news articles like North Korea. To even post this on FB amazes me?

My position remains the same and see no reason to change my views or opinions.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@zichi - Hey, I am trying to get along with you. Okay? You don't know what it is I do, so don't go assuming that I have loads of time on my hands at work. What I post on FB amazes you? Um, I think that is relatively good compared to what a lot of people post on their pages, so ease up on the condescending attitude. Are you being condescending because you were wrong on what quite a few means? Please don't be. It happens to us all.

My position remains the same and see no reason to change my views or opinions.

Who asked you to change your opinion or views? Oh, wait. Were you trying to get me to change mine? Well, then I can understand the need for that comment then. . . However, stranger land gave me something to think about, and for that I am appreciative. You have not done that yet. And as for North Korea, if I wanted to talk about that, I would have. But that is an issue that didn't attract my attention. So, I would appreciate you not look down your nose at me. End of conversation for me. Have a great day.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@sandiegoluv

Are you being condescending because you were wrong on what quite a few means? Please don't be. It happens to us all.

"quite a few" mean a large number but does not mean "many in Japan" means more, maybe you meant "many who I asked?" Many who replied to your FB post?

Did you read the website of Toshinao Nakagawa?

I would have given him another chance provided he was doing good work for his voters. Most of us on JT don't have the vote so we are not influencing anything.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

just because he had an affair. 

It's not the case. Half of J-lawmakers would have resigned "just for an affair". Nobody cares about their sex life usually. Even paparazzi ignore the "just an affair" cases as there are 13 for a dozen. A scandal is when there is more. Some politicians had to resign due to affairs linking them with the under-world. Another MP resigned because he was doing the playboy while on child care paid leave. Today's hero is accused of stalking.

Not if they haven't done anything criminal or illegal.

Stalking is legal ?

I would have given him another chance provided he was doing good work for his voters. 

And he does ? You think he is 2 distinct persons ? Having a double life and telling lies is not illegal, ok. I really don't care if a taxi driver, a plumber, a cook, a math teacher or a nurse has a double life. But you want to be represented by a lawmaker that says he makes laws for citizens, while in the hide, he only works at pleasing lobbies ?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

sandiegluv: "@smithinjapan - Um, are you saying that he did not campaign on honesty and integrity? He might be the first Japanese politician not to then"

I'm saying he did not SPECIFICALLY campaign as a family-oriented, family-loving person, like the mayor did that I referred to. Stop trying to twist others' words.

"Most voters want people who are of a high level of both attributes"

So, hang on a sec... you say "most", then you're proof is that you "asked a few"?

"The LDP and the voters were happy and felt that by quitting the offending politician was taking responsibility for what MOST consider to be inappropriate behavior."

'inappropriate behaviour' is not a crime, period. And again, whom do you refer to as "most"? The "few" you asked? That's not 'most' in any world. In any case, the question being asked is why you think the person should HAVE to quit for something that is not a crime, and you have failed to answer.

"But for the simple fact that he lacks the ability to be honest with his own family, will go out of his way to actually have an affair behind his wife's back makes him an unethical politician."

How does it make him an unethical politician? He may well be, outside of the affair, but it makes him an unethical family man. He may well be a very ethical politician. The two are, sorry, not related, unless, again, he campaigned on the platform of being a family man who does not cheat.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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