Reuters - Video

Edition: US | UK | IN | CN | JP

video Top News

Abe to push reform of Japan's pacifist constitution after election win

Monday, October 23, 2017 - 01:52

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s ruling bloc scores a big election win, bolstering his chance of becoming the nation’s longest-serving premier and re-energizing his push to revise the pacifist constitution. Samantha Vadas reports.

▲ Hide Transcript

View Transcript

A sweeping victory for Shinzo Abe. The Japanese prime minister won big in Sunday's (October 22) election, putting him on track to become the nation's longest-serving leader. According to local media as of Monday (October 23) morning, Abe's ruling bloc has won a combined 312 seats, that's enough to hold onto the party's two-thirds super majority. The hefty win is seen as crucial for his push to rewrite Japan's pacifist constitution which currently says the army exists exclusively for self-defence. Abe took advantage of improved ratings when he called the snap election last month, saying he needed a fresh mandate to tackle a "national crisis". "This election was about, firstly, the North Korean threat. And also the declining birth rate. If we don't do something now it will be too late," said Abe on Sunday. Abe also called the vote so he could get approval to divert money earned off a planned tax hike to education and child care. And a typhoon roaring toward Japan on voting day clearly wasn't enough to rain on his parade. "My expectations of Abe are that he will make Japan's future better," said 46-year-old Liberal Democratic Party supporter Ayumi Matsuoka. Abe's snap election had seemed like a risky bet. Some early forecasts saw his party losing a big chunk of parliament to Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike. Her upstart Party of Hope had absorbed a big part of the failed opposition Democratic Party. But voter enthusiasm quickly fell flat, despite her calls for popular ideas like a freeze on nuclear power. Now a hefty win raises Abe's chances of securing a third three year term and may give his half-decade of Abenomics growth strategy a second wind.

Press CTRL+C (Windows), CMD+C (Mac), or long-press the URL below on your mobile device to copy the code

Abe to push reform of Japan's pacifist constitution after election win

Monday, October 23, 2017 - 01:52