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Political Realignment on the Local Level: Change and Stability in Hyogo and Okayama

Satomi Tani

Professor
Okayama University

 

The end of one-party rule by the Liberal Democratic Party and the introduction of a single-seat district system combined with proportional representation considerably changed the configuration of political parties in Japan. The impacts of these two events on local politics has not been fully examined yet.

This article deals with these two closely related subjects by describing the cases of two prefectures. The author first observes changes in party configuration at the grass-roots level. Next the transformation in the relationship between local politicians and Diet members is analyzed. Recent trends in the two prefectures suggest the separation of local politics from national politics.