Criticism of former House of Representatives member Nobuteru Ishihara, who resigned from his post as chief cabinet secretary after only one week, has not stopped. Despite a string of gaffes, Ishihara has maintained a certain amount of political power as the former secretary general of the LDP and has led his faction, but he was not elected in the general election in October.
When it was revealed that the political party branch he represented had been receiving subsidies for employment adjustment from the national government, the Internet was filled with harsh comments such as “Is this all about money? With his father a writer and former governor of Tokyo, and his uncle a big star in the Showa era, will the Ishihara brand finally disappear?
Will the Ishihara brand finally disappear?
I believe I am still strong and capable, and I would like to offer advice that will be useful to the nation and the region.
On December 6, Ishihara, who was appointed to the post of chief cabinet secretary by Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, a close ally of his, expressed his enthusiasm to reporters. Regarding the outcome of the election, Ishihara said, “I believe that the outcome is the luck of the hour. Criticism has swirled around the fact that a man who lost the general election was “rehired” as a cabinet secretary, but he did not show any sign of feeling guilty about it.
At the December 17 cabinet meeting, the Kishida administration decided to issue a written reply stating that “Mr. Ishihara was appointed based on his wide range of knowledge and experience, including in the field of tourism, as he has served as Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism and Minister in charge of tourism, and the suggestion that he is ‘helping the unemployed’ is not true.
However, while 100,000 yen in benefits was distributed to the people suffering from the spread of the new coronavirus over a period of two years, the fact that Mr. Ishihara, the Cabinet Secretariat Counselor, was paid 26,400 yen a day, or over 100,000 yen for four days, did not seem to be enough to gain the public’s understanding.
A reporter from the political section of a national newspaper said.
Mr. Nobuaki is such a character. In a word, he can’t read the air. In a word, he can’t read the air. He’s like, ‘I’m appointed by Prime Minister Kishida, why should the people complain about me? That’s the feeling I get. I think he’s taking the stance of ‘what’s the problem’ when he’s receiving subsidies based on laws and systems.
Ishihara was born in Kamakura City, Kanagawa Prefecture in 1957, graduated from Keio High School in 1976, studied at Elmira University in New York in 1978, graduated from the Faculty of Letters at Keio University in 1981, and joined Nippon Television Network Corporation. After graduating from the Faculty of Letters at Keio University in 1981, he joined Nippon Television Network Corporation (NTV), where he worked as a reporter in the Political Science Department, covering the former Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Prime Minister’s Office, etc. He ran in the 1990 general election from the former Tokyo 4th district and was elected for the first time.
A small business owner in Mr. Ishihara’s hometown is angry.
We were desperate to ask him for help, but he never listened to us. We are desperately asking him for help, but he either doesn’t understand us or doesn’t want to listen to my petitions in the first place. In the party, everyone is afraid of “Shintaro Ishihara” and treats him politely, and in the election, if “Ishihara’s army” comes, he will be elected. I didn’t hear that he was working hard on other petitions.
In 2001, he joined the first cabinet of Junichiro Koizumi as minister in charge of administrative reform, and in 2003 he became minister of land, transportation and tourism, and in 2010 he became secretary general of the LDP. In 2003, he became Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, and in 2010, Secretary General of the LDP.
In the “Main Positions” section of his biography, he is listed as the chairman of the party’s policy research committee, minister of economic revitalization, minister of the environment, and many other important posts, suggesting that he has been climbing the ladder as a “candidate for future prime minister.
Ishihara’s father, Shintaro, and his uncle, Yujiro Ishihara, were known as the Ishihara brand, and the people who interacted with them loved him. Former Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori and former House of Councillors Chairman Mikio Aoki also favored him, and when he joined the cabinet and ran for the LDP presidency in 2012, he received support from party heavyweights.
The 2012 presidential election, his second attempt, was also called the “Heisei no Akechi Mitsuhide” issue. Just as Sadakazu Tanigaki, the president of the opposition Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), was preparing to seek re-election, Ishihara, the secretary general who was supposed to support Tanigaki, announced his intention to run for president. Former Prime Minister Taro Aso sharply criticized Mr. Ishihara, saying, “For the time being, Mr. Ishihara will be crowned with the unappreciated title of ‘heir apparent’ or ‘Heisei no Akechi Mitsuhide.
In the end, former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe won the presidential election in which five candidates were nominated, and Ishihara, who forced his way into the race, finished fourth.
A series of gaffes
Even more than his political activities, it is his “gaffes” that have attracted the attention of the media. He called the storage site for contaminated soil following the accident at TEPCO’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant “Satyan” and called the facility “alien” when he observed a gastric bandage procedure. When he was negotiating for an interim storage facility to store decontaminated waste as the Minister of Environment, he was heavily criticized for saying, “At the end of the day, it’s all about money.
Ishihara’s downfall, which began with his “money” comments on the disaster area, ended with his “money” receipt of an employment adjustment subsidy.
In December 2007, Ishihara joined the “Near Future Politics Study Group,” a faction led by former Vice President Taku Yamazaki, and five years later he became the faction’s president, ousting former Secretary General Akira Amari, who was the leader of the group. However, the Yamazaki faction, which had nearly 40 members at its peak, lost its strength and became a small faction when it became the Ishihara faction. After his unsuccessful bid in the general election, Ishihara was succeeded as chairman by former national committee chairman Yutaka Moriyama, but the number of members of his faction has dwindled to seven.
In addition to Amari’s resignation as secretary general and Ishihara’s resignation as chief cabinet secretary, Yamazaki was suspended from LDP membership for one year on December 13 for supporting another party’s candidate in the general election. Some people are even saying that the area around Mr. Ishihara may be cursed this year.
When Ishihara reported his unsuccessful election to Shintaro Ishihara on the December 5 episode of “Sore Sore Tette Kai NP,” he said, “Good luck.
Ishihara Promotion, founded by Yujiro Ishihara, a great star of the Showa era, was dissolved in January of this year, and now that Shintaro, the 89-year-old former governor of Tokyo, has stepped down from politics, will the Ishihara brand continue to fade away?
Reporting and writing： Kenichi Ogura Photo: AFLO： AFLO