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Shugiin (House of Representatives)

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Parliament name (generic / translated) Kokkai / National Diet
Structure of parliament Bicameral
Chamber name (generic / translated) Shugiin / House of Representatives
Related chamber (for bicameral parliaments) Sangiin / House of Councillors
Dates of election / renewal (from/to) 22 October 2017
Purpose of elections Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's ruling coalition - comprising his Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and Komeito - retained its two-thirds majority in the early elections, taking a total of 335 seats in the 465-member House of Representatives (see note 1). The Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan, led by former Chief Cabinet Secretary, Mr. Yukio Edano; and Kibo no To (Party of Hope), led by the Governor of Tokyo, Ms. Yuriko Koike, took 54 and 50 seats respectively (see note 2). The percentage of women in the House of Representatives surpassed 10% for the first time since 2009. On 1 November, Mr. Abe was re-elected as Prime Minister.

The 2017 elections were held amid security threats caused by missile launches and nuclear testing by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK). The Prime Minister called snap elections in late September, stating that he needed a fresh mandate for his administration's handling of the tensions with the DPRK as well as for its decision to spend more revenue from the planned rise in consumption tax (from 8 to 10% in 2019) on social welfare and less on paying off government debt. Most opposition parties opposed the consumption tax increase. The major electoral issues included the Prime Minister’s plan to amend the Constitution, while the evaluation of the second Abe administration (since 2012) also dominated the election campaign. Among the major parties, the ruling coalition and Kibo no To advocated for constitutional amendments while the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan opposed them.

Note 1:
In accordance with amendments to the Electoral law promulgated on 27 May 2016, the number of single-member constituencies decreased from 295 to 289, and the number of members elected under the proportional system fell from 180 to 176. Accordingly, the number of members of the House of Representatives has been reduced from 475 to 465.

Note 2:
Prior to the 2017 elections, the main opposition Democratic Party (which itself had been formed in March 2016 by the Democratic Party of Japan and two other parties) split into several parties. Most members joined Kibo no To, formed by Governor Koike, who herself did not stand for the 2017 elections. Fifteen other members joined the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan, while Democratic Party leader Seiji Maehara and other senior members ran as independents.
Date of previous elections: 14 December 2014

Date of dissolution of the outgoing legislature: 28 September 2017

Timing of election: Early elections

Expected date of next elections: October 2021

Number of seats at stake: 465 (full renewal)

Number of candidates: 1,180 (971 men, 209 women)

Percentage of women candidates: 17.7%

Number of parties contesting the election: 11

Number of parties winning seats: 7

Alternation of power: No

Number of parties in government: 2

Names of parties in government: Liberal Democratic Party and Komeito

Date of the first session of the new parliament: 1 November 2017

Name of the new Speaker: Mr. Tadamori Oshima (Liberal Democratic Party)
Voter turnout
Round no 122 October 2017
Number of registered electors
Blank or invalid ballot papers
Valid votes
56'947'831 (53.68%)

Notes Statistics above refer to PR system.
Distribution of votes
Round no 1
Political Group Candidates Votes %
Liberal Democratic Party (LDP)
Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan
Kibo no To (Party of Hope)
Japanese Communist Party (JCP)
Nippon Ishin no To (Japan Restoration Party)
Social Democratic Party (SDPJ)
Distribution of seats
Round no 1
Political Group Total Majority Proportional
Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) 281 215 66
Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan 54 17 37
Kibo no To (Party of Hope) 50 18 32
Komeito 29 8 21
Independents 26 26 0
Japanese Communist Party (JCP) 12 1 11
Nippon Ishin no To (Japan Restoration Party) 11 3 8
Social Democratic Party (SDPJ) 2 1 1
Distribution of seats according to sex
Percent of women
Distribution of seats according to age
Distribution of seats according to profession
Note on the Distribution of seats:
- Three independent candidates-elect joined the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) after the elections, bringing the LDP's tally to 284 in all.
- One independent candidate-elect joined the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan, bringing the party's tally to 55 in all.

Parliamentary groups in the House of Representatives as at 30 October 2017.
- Liberal Democratic Party (LDP): 284
- Constitutional Democratic Party - Civic Club: 55
- Kibo no To (Party of Hope) - Independents Club: 51
- Komeito: 29
- Association of Independents: 13
- Japanese Communist Party (JCP): 12
- Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Restoration Party): 11
- Liberal Party: 2
- Social Democratic Party (SDPJ) - Citizens Coalition: 2
- Independents: 6

House of Representatives (31.10.2017)
Kyodo News Service

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