DPJ Proposes Removing 40 Seats from House of Councillors (16.5% of Total), Merging 5 Pairs of Adjacent Districts

DPJ Proposes Removing 40 Seats from House of Councillors (16.5% of Total)
Yomiuri Shimbun: 定数40減、10区を合区…民主が参院選改革案
Staff Report 2:38 PM July 27, 2011

At a general meeting of the House of Councillors the morning of the 27th, the ruling Democratic Party of Japan approved the following electoral reform plan for the legislative body, which is the upper house of the Japanese Diet:

(1) Decrease the number of seats by 40, or 16.5%, from 242 to 202. Half the losses would come from representatives elected by region and the other half from representatives determined by proportional representation, maintaining the current 50-50 split.

(2) Merge five pairs of adjacent districts with low numbers of constituents.

The plan was formally approved at the headquarters of the party’s Political Reform Committee. It will be sent to the leader of each party with representatives in the House of Councillors for discussion.

The district pairs to be merged would be Nagano and Yamanashi, Ishikawa and Fukui, Tottori and Shimane, Tokushima and Kochi, and Nagasaki and Saga. (Each of the ten is a prefecture.) Nagano-Yamanashi would have 2 representatives, the other pairs 1 each.

Hiroshima, Kyoto, Gifu, Niigata, Fukushima, and Miyagi would each lose a representative, leaving them with 1 each. Kanagawa would add a 4th representative. The councillor with the most constituents would represent 2.97 times more voters than the one with the least constituents.

Original/原稿:
定数40減、10区を合区…民主が参院選改革案

 民主党は27日午前の参院議員総会で、参院選挙制度改革について、〈1〉選挙区と比例代表の定数を20ずつ削減し、総定数(現行242)を202〈2〉有権者の少ない10選挙区を二つずつ「合区」して5選挙区――とする改革案を決定した。

 近く党政治改革推進本部総会で民主党案として正式決定し、参院各会派代表による検討会に提示する。

 合区する選挙区は、長野・山梨、石川・福井、鳥取・島根、徳島・高知、長崎・佐賀。改選定数は長野・山梨は2、それ以外は1とする。

 また、広島、京都、岐阜、新潟、福島、宮城の6選挙区は改選定数を2から1に減員し、神奈川の改選定数は3から4に増員する。議員1人当たりの有権者数の格差(1票の格差)は最大で約2・97倍となる。

(2011年7月27日14時38分 読売新聞)

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