The Party of Hope is facing a crisis. Its support ratings have remained low. It was also not able to make its presence felt at the special Diet session that virtually adjourned on Dec. 8. It is still unable to develop a vision for the party after its former leader Yuriko Koike (Tokyo governor) left.
This party is in a very serious situation. Its support ratings have continued to slide in most opinion polls. A JNN (affiliated with TBS TV) poll on Dec. 2-3 showed the shocking result that the party’s support rating is now 1.0% (down by 2.4 percentage points from the previous poll). The temporary expectations on the party as a result of the “Koike fever” have evaporated.
In this pathetic situation, the party’s only hope is to cooperate with other opposition parties. Party leader Yuichiro Tamaki indicated to reporters at the Diet on Dec. 8 that forming a unified floor group with other parties “is an option.” It is reckoned that he was referring to the Democratic Party (DP) and other opposition parties.
However, the Party of Hope has differences with the five opposition parties that agree on opposition to the security laws – the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan (CDPJ), the DP, the Japanese Communist Party, the Liberal Party, and the Social Democratic Party. The Party of Hope did not also join the other five parties in submitting a bill on scrapping the “anti-conspiracy law” because it was not able to arrive at a consensus in the party.
Even the Nippon Ishin [Japan Innovation Party], which keeps distance from the five opposition parties, is also indifferent toward the Party of Hope.
DP members planning to bolt the party are not even interested in the Party of Hope. A senior DP official predicted that several House of Councillors members of the party may join the CDPJ but quipped that “only those who are really weird would go to the Party of Hope.” (Abridged)