Kanako Takahara

Kanako Takahara is a staff writer who has covered national politics, diplomacy, business and the economy at The Japan Times. A graduate of Sophia University, she is currently a national news editor.

For Kanako Takahara's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Matsumoto new foreign minister

Mar 10, 2011

Matsumoto new foreign minister

Prime Minister Naoto Kan named political blue-blood and former banker Takeaki Matsumoto as foreign minister Wednesday, promoting the deputy foreign minister to replace Seiji Maehara, who stepped down over a political donation scandal. "The prime minister decided to appoint (Matsumoto) for his ability and knowledge ...

| Mar 8, 2011

DPJ loses potential successor to Kan

Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara's abrupt resignation Sunday may have averted even more turmoil in the Diet, but his loss bodes ill for the Democratic Party of Japan because he was a leading candidate to succeed Prime Minister Naoto Kan. The resignation, prompted by illegal donations ...

Mar 4, 2011

DPJ member bolts, ties with Nagoya mayor

A rookie Lower House member resigned Thursday from the Democratic Party of Japan to join a small group led by Nagoya Mayor Takashi Kawamura, weakening the ruling DPJ's power in the Lower House by yet another vote. Yuko Sato's departure is another blow to Prime ...

Mar 2, 2011

Budget passed but 16 in DPJ skip vote

The Democratic Party of Japan's executive council said Tuesday it will suspend the party membership of the leader of 16 DPJ rebels who refused to attend a Lower House plenary vote on the fiscal 2011 budget, which cleared the chamber anyway in a session ...

Mar 1, 2011

Budget near passage as DPJ abstentions loom

The Lower House was set to enact the fiscal 2011 budget early Tuesday morning, but the fate of related bills critical to financing the government's massive debt remained up in the air with the divided Diet. The ¥92.4 trillion budget was set to clear the ...

Feb 24, 2011

LDP putting recovery at risk, Kan says

Prime Minister Naoto Kan called again Wednesday for the opposition camp to support the budget and related bills in the Diet, saying failure to do so will put the economic recovery at risk. "While the economy is recovering, the most important issue for the livelihoods ...

DPJ suspends Ozawa; Kan hints at election

Feb 23, 2011

DPJ suspends Ozawa; Kan hints at election

The Democratic Party of Japan's key executive body opted Tuesday to suspend Ichiro Ozawa's party membership pending the outcome of his trial, despite rising pressure from the indicted kingpin's allies to withhold punishment. Besieged Prime Minister Naoto Kan, who is also the DPJ president, meanwhile ...

Feb 19, 2011

DPJ revolt shows signs of growing

The rebellion against Naoto Kan is far from over and a few more lawmakers are likely to get on the bandwagon, a Democratic Party of Japan source said Friday, fueling speculation the uprising within the party could force the prime minister to step down. In ...

Punish Ozawa at your peril: 16 DPJ allies

Feb 18, 2011

Punish Ozawa at your peril: 16 DPJ allies

Sixteen Lower House members of the Democratic Party of Japan loyal to Ichiro Ozawa applied Thursday to leave the DPJ's parliamentary group in the Diet and form a new group in an apparent attempt to pressure party leaders to back away from punishing the ...

Kan in budget vote, Ozawa bind

| Feb 17, 2011

Kan in budget vote, Ozawa bind

Already beset by opposition attacks, Prime Minister Naoto Kan is facing another threat to his leadership: a deepening rift within his Democratic Party of Japan over how to punish scandal-ridden party don Ichiro Ozawa. Kan's bid to pass the fiscal 2011 budget and related bills ...