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LDP's Fukuda Calls For Unity Of Largest Faction After Abe's Death


Maintaining the cohesion of the largest faction within the ruling Liberal Democratic Party is critically important for Japanese politics, lawmaker and chair of LDP General Affairs Council Tatsuo Fukuda argued in a speech on Wednesday.

  • The late former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was leader of the Seiwa Policy Study Group, also known simply as the Abe faction. Nearly a hundred LDP lawmakers belong to the group, making it the largest faction within the LDP.
  • After the fatal shooting of Shinzo Abe, the group decided to retain the name "Abe faction" and to leave the post of faction leader vacant for the time being. The faction has temporarily assumed a collective leadership framework, relying on a seven-member caretaker committee with two acting chairmen.
  • Media reports suggested that there has been backlash against this mode of operation from some younger Diet members. It is worth noting that Fukuda leads a cross-faction group of younger lawmakers but also has clout within the Abe faction, being the grandson of its original founder and one of the most senior party officials.
  • Fukuda refused to name any candidatures for Abe's successor as faction leader but suggested he was not planning to run. Whoever takes the helm of what is now the Abe faction will gain considerable influence on intra-party dynamics at a time when internal talks on the FY2023 budget are beginning to gain steam.

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