ELECTIONS HELD IN 2000
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|25 June 2000|
|Elections were held for all the seats in the House of Representatives following premature dissolution of this body on 2 June 2000. Elections had previously taken place in October 1996.|
|On 2 June 2000, Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori dissolved the House of Representatives and called for early general elections to be held on 25 June 2000. Elections should have been held in October 2000, but Mr. Mori, who took over the post at the beginning of April 2000, after his predecessor, Mr. Keizo Obuchi, had suffered a stroke, wanted to seek a mandate from the people.
During the 10-day electoral campaign, the prime minister's popularity rating slumped to an all-time low for a prime minister going into elections for the House of Representatives. Indeed, after Mr Mori referred to Japan as a "divine country, centred on the emperor", support to his government collapsed from about 40 per cent in April to less than 20 percent just before election day.
The campaign focused on the economy with the government advocating heavy spending on public works projects while going slow on deregulation, market opening and other reforms. This strategy had led to weak economic recovery with unemployment still at a record high. The opposition, for its part, called for more reforms and less spending.
A total of 1,404 candidates contested the 480 seats -300 in single-seat constituencies and 180 proportional representation seats. A law promulgated in February 2000 had reduced the composition of the House of Representatives from 500 to 480 members.
More than 100 million people were eligible to vote but turnout was quite low, around the 63 per cent, although a little higher than in the previous 1996 elections, when it was 59.65 per cent.
In the outgoing Parliament, the governing coalition had held 336 of the 500 seats, 271 of them for the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) alone. The results of the 25 June 2000 election showed that the governing coalition had suffered a setback; in the new legislature the LDP, which won 233, seats will depend on its two junior partners, the Buddhist-backed New Komeito (31 seats), and the New Conservative Party (7 seats). The leading opposition party, the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), secured 127 seats, a gain of 75. Among the other opposition parties, the Liberal Party won 22 seats, the Japanese Communist Party 18, the Social Democratic Party 18 and other small parties 24.
On 4 July 2000, the newly elected House of Representatives voted to reappoint Yoshiro Mori as Prime Minister. He immediately announced a new cabinet in which most of the key posts were retained by their previous holders.
|Round no 1 (25 June 2000): Elections results. Majority vote|
|Number of registered electors||100 433 798|
|Voters||62 764 239 (62 %)|
|Blank or invalid ballot papers||1 877 318|
|Valid votes||60 886 921|
|Round no 1 (25 June 2000): Elections results. Proportional representation|
|Number of registered electors||100 492 328|
|Voters||62 757 828 (62.45%)|
|Blank or invalid ballot papers||2 904 983|
|Valid votes||59 844 601|
|Round no 1: Distribution of seats|
|Liberal Democratic Party (LDP)||233||177||56||+5|
|Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ)||127||80||47||-38|
|Japanese Communist Party (JCP)||20||0||20||-6|
|Social Democratic Party (SDPJ)||19||4||15||-6|
|New Conservative Party||7||7||0||-11|
|The ruling coalition is formed by the Liberal Democratic Party, the Komeito Party and the Hoshuto Conservative Party.|
|Distribution of seats according to sex:|
|Percent of women:||7.29|
Copyright © 2000 Inter-Parliamentary Union