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POLITICS > Elections

Proportional representation wasted 510,000 votes

  • July 30, 2016
  • , Asahi , p. 4
  • Translation

According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, there were 2,074,189 invalid votes in the upper house election last month. The number represents 3.57% of all votes, and an increase of 0.72 points compared with the last Upper House election in 2013. 511,956 ballots were declared invalid nationwide, largely due to people who wrote “minshu,” the Democratic Party’s previous name, instead of “minshin.”


When a ballot indicates a name other than the name of a candidate or party, or is blank, the public office election law stipulates that the election affairs manager at the ballot counting office should declare the ballot invalid. The ministry determined that votes for the Democratic Party (DP, or Minshinto) may include abbreviations such as “min” and “minshin.” However, as for ballots for “minshu” or “Minshuto,” DP’s name until last March, it allowed each election administration commission to judge its validity mainly because “minshu’ could indicate “Jiyuuminshuto” (Liberal Democratic Party) or “Shakaiminshuto”(Social Democratic Party). (Abridged)

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