It has been said that the citizens of Osaka voted in youthful TV celebrity Toru Hashimoto on Sunday because they were voting for change. But the election highlights just the opposite. Instead of voting in someone capable of pushing forward real political change, the citizens of Osaka have opted to vote in the same old celebrity candidate of the Liberal Democratic Party.
Rather than risk exclusion from Tokyo, the voters voted to be part of the LDP club. Moreover, they have voted in someone that has given little hint of how he plans to accomplish what he wants to do. Hashimoto provides sound bite after sound bite much like former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi did.
It would have been nice to see Osaka vote for someone that believes in pushing forward real change. Hashimoto seems to be more of the ilk of Tokyo Gov. Shintaro Ishihara — someone who has been voted in due to name recognition. When will the voters of this country understand the meaning of “conservative”?
That said, Hashimoto’s victory might be a blessing in disguise for those voters that want true change. The blessing will come if he can mess things up before the next national election.