Certain Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) members are proposing to add “restrictions on the power to dissolve the House of Representatives” to the constitutional revision issues to be deliberated. This is in light of rising criticisms of the prime minister’s “abuse” of this power in recent years. The Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan (CDPJ) is also demanding restrictions on this right, so it appears that this is also meant to prod the opposition parties not supporting constitutional revision to participate in the constitutional debate.
Lower House Speaker Tadamori Oshima held an informal meeting with former Speaker Bunmei Ibuki and other lawmakers on Dec. 6. According to an informed source, participants in the meeting voiced the opinion that, “It is wrong that the prime minister is able to dissolve at will the highest organ of state power.” The discussions at this meeting were reported to the LDP Headquarters for the Promotion of Revision to the Constitution. A senior headquarters official said: “Whether this is actually discussed as an issue for constitutional revision will depend on the political situation from now on.” (Abridged)