Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida returned to work this week with a new mandate after his Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and its junior coalition partner Komeito won a majority of 293 seats in Japan’s 465-seat House of Representatives. Kishida was the big winner in Sunday’s elections, limiting the LDP’s losses to only 15 seats. It had been bracing to lose dozens more. However, Komeito also had a good night, increasing its total by three seats to 32.
It’s easy to overlook Komeito. After all, the party’s parliamentary presence seems marginal; with 261 seats of its own, the LDP could control the House of Representatives independently. But after more than 20 years of partnership with the LDP, Komeito has become an indispensable player in Japan’s government.
The above excerpt was originally published in Foreign Policy.
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