Fumio Kishida secured Japan’s prime ministership by showing his strength among ruling party insiders. Now, the former banker who has conceded that some see him as boring will have to prove he can win over voters frustrated with the government’s COVID-19 policies.

Kishida, 64, is set to become the nation’s prime minister after defeating a more popular reformer, Taro Kono, in a vote Wednesday to lead the long-dominant Liberal Democratic Party. While Kishida can all-but guarantee that the LDP will install him as prime minister at a special session Monday, keeping the job will require convincing a skeptical public he deserves it in a general election set to be held within weeks.

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