Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga attends a plenary session, during the G7 summit in Carbis Bay, England, on Sunday. Photo: Phil Noble/Pool via AP
politics

Suga not ruling out election if no-confidence vote submitted

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Suga can't do the ole Japanese "I'll fold my arms and go to sleep in the meeting" but everyone let's pretend that I am thinking deeply routine.

Japan should be embarrassed by its leadership like the US was the last 4 years!

23 ( +31 / -8 )

my top priority is dealing with the coronavirus

Clearly, Suga fumbled the coronavirus like no other world leader, and to speak about it as if he had been focusing on it all these months is an insult to every person who has been subject to his "leadership".

Suga out is priority one.

27 ( +32 / -5 )

Elections NOW!!! I mean REAL election, where the PEOPLE make the choice. Not some dodgy under the table internal super secret election!!! But then who should be a next prime minister? Personally, Shigeru Ishiba gets my vote.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

” I want to bring back safety and security to the Japanese people as soon as possible (sotto voce) once the Olympics are done and I’ve paid off the officials”

13 ( +16 / -3 )

Does ANYONE have the least bit of confidence in this uncharismatic buffoon? Man, and I thought Abe was incompetent....

12 ( +15 / -3 )

Corrupt to the bone!!

8 ( +9 / -1 )

I sense Suga may get some "illness" he will need to resign with soon.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

I mean REAL election, where the PEOPLE make the choice.

Well, over 85% of Japanese are against the Olympics, so that is kinda like an election.

problem with one party states is the leaders. Russia, China and Singapore seen to be doing pretty fine, but Japan is going down the drain.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

That photo says it all...no comment needed, this is what passes for "leadership" here.

Japan should be embarrassed by its leadership like the US was the last 4 years!"

Indeed.

Clearly, Suga fumbled the coronavirus like no other world leader, and to speak about it as if he had been focusing on it all these months is an insult to every person who has been subject to his "leadership".

Spot on comment.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

That photo symbolizes how the Japanese government has been handling the pandemic. Wake up!

9 ( +11 / -2 )

If there is a no-confidence motion submitted, there is almost always an election that follows... often simply to re-establish the legitimacy of the leader. Suga may be in trouble, if the more powerful faction leaders have decided who will be the next PM... Japanese "democracy" in action.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Why would anyone have any confidence in this guy?

His government has bungled the virus response. Vaccines have been moving at a snails pace. He’s just been caught in the middle of a seemingly corrupt action to screw investors in Toshiba.

Also, on a purely personal level, should I have confidence that this guy is going to go to international gatherings such as the G7 and be the best representative for Japan? I doubt he engaged in any small talk with the other attendees. Can he speak English? All the other leaders can.

I can just imagine him sat quietly in his seat while meaningful chatter is going on all around him. Yes, he has a translator, but at the highest of high levels there’s so much to say for personal relationships that are forged through informal chatting and sudden exchanges.

I have absolutely no confidence that this guy is up to the job of running a country.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

What a photo. Dreary, drab, spot on.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

"(The election) could happen any time. But my top priority is dealing with the coronavirus," he said. "I want to bring back safety and security to the Japanese people as soon as possible."

OK Pinocchio

4 ( +5 / -1 )

HBJ,

well, he got "his translator" whispering in his ear, it seems.

Everything else, well, nothing to be expected, except considering, pledging, promising, and asking for favors as always. This includes the "snap-election" which won't change anything if it is done.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

His top priority is not the coronavirus, it’s the Olympics, and always has been…. Well, aside from avoiding responsibility for messing everything up.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

The Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan and other opposition parties have called for a three-month extension to the current Diet session beyond its expiration on Wednesday and said they are considering a no-confidence vote if their request is not met.

Don't they ever learn? They're wasting their time with this no confidence motion nonsense unless there are LDP Diet members who will support it, which is just never going to happen.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

HBJToday  10:08 am JST

I have absolutely no confidence that this guy is up to the job of running a country.

Of course not, but that's not a Japanese politician's main role, especially if they're in the LDP. Their job is to ensure their own re-election by ensuring a steady flow of pork barrel spending in the direction of influential supporters in their constituency. As for running the country, if they just claim to be considering all the issues very seriously that's the job done. Treble sakes all round!

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Suga fumbled the covid? Nearly every country would be happy to have the low death rate of covid victims here. About 13,000. Compared to the death figures in European countries, America, Brazil.

Only the IOC can cancel the Olympics.

"The contract between the IOC and host city Tokyo is straightforward: There's one article regarding cancellation and it only gives the option for the IOC to cancel, not for the host city."

"That's because the Olympic Games are the "exclusive property" of the IOC, international sports lawyer Alexandre Miguel Mestre told the BBC. And as the "owner" of the Games, it is the IOC that can terminate said contract."

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-57097853

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

@zichi

A death rate of any kind is never a happy thing!!!

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Comfort women. Women who are forced to work in brothels. The proper terminology would be sex slaves.

As for Suga, dealing with SARSCoV-2, a supposed priority, he implemented GoToTravel, which caused a spread of the contagion. Imposed a 'state-of-emergency' which he lifted in the Spring and another proliferation of viral infections. There are 50 million doses of vaccine, stored in Kansai, 18 months into the pandemic, no viable means of inoculation is in place, the vaccine sits in cold storage.

80% of the population, a significant number of physicians and myriad healthcare practitioners & officials oppose holding the Olympic Games. Suga reflects the mantra of IOC/AOC Coates and lapdog Dick Pound, 'the games must go on, no matter the cost'. The actors who exercise actual control, such as Comcast/NBCU, members of the IOC and large corporate entities that peddle shoes and other fashionwear determine that The Olympics will take place, not Suga or his cronies.

Australia sends its Women's Softball Team, contrary to the 'promise' athletes would not arrive until shortly before the games commence. Which functions as a peculiar means of PR, no accident Coates is from Australia, to illustrate that a contingency of athletes can 'safely' exist among the populous. Ignoring the fact it is approximately 35 individuals, hardy the almost 12,000 athletes, not counting staff, hangers on, officials and those who work the ropes, which is 100,000 to 250,000 depending on who is working the numbers.

Vote of confidence? Hardly. More, simply incompetent to begin with and that multiplied by the situation.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

A death rate of any kind is never a happy thing!!!

Totally agree but a death rate of 13,000 is better than America 614,007. Brazil 482,135. UK 127,867.

I would even suggest Japan escaped a bullet.

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

@zichi

Well Japan hasn't really dodged anything yet, covid is still going strong here. And with the lack of testing I'm sure they've been creative in counting the deaths.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Vreth

@zichi

> Well Japan hasn't really dodged anything yet, covid is still going strong here. And with the lack of testing I'm sure they've been creative in counting the deaths.

Covid isn't over and the vaccination programs too slow. I thought about the numbers of deaths and looked at monthly death rates over the last 18 months with no spikes in rates. So I'm left wondering where are they hiding the bodies then?

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

zichi: "Only the IOC can cancel the Olympics."

Utter hogwash. If Japan up and said we're not doing it, they would suffer penalties, but it would not be done. Period. You can only claim that because to date it has NOT been challenged, but of all the times it should be, this is it. The reason Japan doesn't? Money. And, they can shift the blame, as you have. But I guarantee when things are all said and done and towards the end of August when infection rates sky-rocket, and we start realizing taxes will go up to pay for the Games, the IOC is NOT going to say, "Yep, our fault, our choice." They will say, "It is up to the host nation to ultimately decide to go ahead with the Games or not," while Suga (with his new cabinet of the same people shuffled around) will say, "It was not our choice, it was the IOC. Shouganai!" and the incompetence will continue.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

@zichi

Japan has, "done so well" for two and only two reasons.

One. They are east Asian and have faster immune responses because this is where the virus originates from.

Two. No testing

Compare them to other East Asian countries. Given the MAJOR advantage they had with regards to prior exposure, yeah suga dropped the ball.

There was no opposition. Suga genuinely just had to walk over the line. But no can't do that in Japan. Gotta worry about that superior 民度. Got cocky, started show boating, doing his victory dance, then got smashed by corona.

It's embarrassing man.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

You can't let a man who is always half asleep run the country.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

"I want to bring back safety and security to the Japanese people as soon as possible."

You say it's what you want, but it's not what you do.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

@zichi

Suga fumbled the covid? Nearly every country would be happy to have the low death rate of covid victims here. About 13,000. Compared to the death figures in European countries, America, Brazil.

The Philippines has low death rate of covid, too. No vaccine, virtually absent contact tracing and testing, no leadership.

The low death rate has definitely nothing to do with Suga, but he is responsible for the increased infections.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

The meetings when jet lag strikes around 3 pm local time. Brain on life support with 1% of normal energy. Only thought is when can I sleep. Otsukaresama. Funny anecdote, we has visitors from Boston to Japan a few years back and one of the guys couldn't sleep so he took a sleeping pill at 3 am. At our meetings from 10 am he literally fell asleep in the meeting and from time to time he jerked his head up and was awake to make a comment. It was like a superpower.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Good time for him to call an Election if the LDP want to remain in power. Voter turnout will be incredibly low and there is no credible opposition at this time.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@Paul - You clearly don't understand the difference between a REAL Election and the election of the LDP leader who by default becomes Prime Minister whilst the LDP hold a majority.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

This guy has had a look on his face that says "I'd rather be anywhere else than here" since day 1.

Also...how did this article about a possible "no confidence vote" turn into a story about South Korea halfway through?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Suga san, with respect, through the ability to enable a political faction, succumbed to the very definition of time-scale promotion over merit.

Suga san, failed to make a mark/impression at the so-called G7 whelks and wallies, we all like to be beside the seaside escapade.

Suga san wasn't just representing his country but his people. 

The photo depicts more than just the reason Abe san lead the ruling party, and Suga san remained in the background irritating the press corps.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This would explain why he is trying (too late) to recover some popularity with some unimportant measures, unfortunately for him the main problems that have cost him the support of the people are not going away. I would like to think this is enough to make a true political change, but I am too old to be that naïve.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

virusrex, change always comes, in Japan it takes longer than expected, however change happens,

Either one accepts change, embracing the outcome, or change is forced upon you.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Covid isn't over and the vaccination programs too slow. I thought about the numbers of deaths and looked at monthly death rates over the last 18 months with no spikes in rates. So I'm left wondering where are they hiding the bodies then?

I believe that the official numbers are far from accurate, and speaking to doctors on the front line many hold the same view. But, even if I go along with the official numbers, I'm left thinking - if they had taken this virus anywhere near serious from the start, how many lives would've been saved?

13,000 deaths - if that is the number the government is happy to put its name to - is shocking given the way the government has acted over the last 18 months. If the number is true, how low could that number have been if it had put the health and well being of the population first and foremost?

It's not a matter of 'hiding the bodies' as many keep suggesting, it's a simple matter of admin as to what gets written on death certificates. If people aren't being tested, and they die at home, or without being admitted to hospital, they may not even be tested once they have died - especially if they are elderly.

The official number of 13,000 will only consist of those people who tested positive for the virus and who consequently died before a set deadline expired. The number will not include anyone who hasn't been tested (see the ongoing fume about low testing numbers), or anyone who dies due to some associated medical condition X days after testing positive e.g. someone tests positive, is admitted to hospital, and 3 weeks later dies of pneumonia - there is a strong possibility this death is recorded as pneumonia and not Covid related.

If the Olympics weren't being held in Japan, I think we would've seen testing on a much bigger scale than has actually happened. There has always been that Olympic elephant in the room meaning the government wanted to keep a tight grip on the optics. Go all the way back to Abe lying to the IOC during the bidding process - 'Everything is under control in Fukushima' - to see how far they were willing to go to get these Olympics. Deaths, cover ups, under reporting facts, not being open and honest with the facts - the reaction to Covid is straight out of the same playbook.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Sure, he can call an election every time, the results are always known: LDP landslide.

Unless mass number of politicians defect from LDP, LDP will be winning a landslide every time. Japanese voters never change their votes from their local political families. Elections are based on perceived legitimacy as rulers in terms of their heritage.

National popularity doesn't matter in Japan, as long as you are from a political family, you can have a 1% national support, but still win 90% of the votes in your local region to win your seat.

When Japanese voters do not like a politician, they will not vote for someone else, they will just not vote. It is impossible for someone with proper political heritage to lose elections

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said Sunday he would not rule out dissolving the House of Representatives for a general election if opposition parties make good on their threat to submit a vote of no confidence against his Cabinet.

Nonsense and a pretty poor attempt at bluffing...no way Suga would call a snap election just before the Olympics, he is trying to pretend Japan is putting into place some " effective "anti corona measures for the games, he can't have millions of sheeple cramming into voting stations at the same time.... foreign press would have a field day. Besides, with the current low ratings , LDP would likely still win but loose a big number of seats , and that is the primary reason all the deadwood oyaji Jiminto politicians are against it. They all hope the Olympics will bring at least a little bit of a distraction and fake glory for them to try and take credit for. The election will be held after the Games, 100 %.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

On the pictures Mr Suga seems intensely concerned with what is happening .

0 ( +0 / -0 )

blahblah222Today  04:14 pm JST

Sure, he can call an election every time, the results are always known: LDP landslide.

Unless mass number of politicians defect from LDP, LDP will be winning a landslide every time. Japanese voters never change their votes from their local political families. Elections are based on perceived legitimacy as rulers in terms of their heritage.

National popularity doesn't matter in Japan, as long as you are from a political family, you can have a 1% national support, but still win 90% of the votes in your local region to win your seat.

When Japanese voters do not like a politician, they will not vote for someone else, they will just not vote. It is impossible for someone with proper political heritage to lose elections

That's part of the story. Loopholes in the political funding laws also enable politicians to amass private donations and pass them on to their offspring, and as constituency boundaries haven't been redrawn enough to reflect demographic changes disproportionate numbers of Diet members come from depopulated rural areas that, guess what, lean heavily in the direction of the LDP. Of course the LDP did get wiped out in 2009 and I think it could happen again, but only if there was a big, well-funded opposition party like the DPJ was.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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