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Projected re-election to make Ishikawa’s Tanimoto longest-serving governor

Kyodo

Ishikawa Gov. Masanori Tanimoto won his sixth four-year term in the gubernatorial election Sunday, defeating two independent challengers.

Tanimoto, 68, supported by the opposition Social Democratic Party, was challenged by Yoshinobu Kimura, 62, a senior member of a citizens’ group backed by the Japanese Communist Party, and Yuichiro Kawa, 42, a former prefectural assembly member.

Tanimoto was first elected governor in 1994. The latest election victory makes him the country’s longest-serving governor, along with Ibaraki Gov. Masaru Hashimoto, 68.