Whether the condition is called “unconstitutional” or “in a state of unconstitutionality,” recent rulings by high courts on the Upper House electoral system appear to be unanimous: The disparity in the value of votes between populous and less populous constituencies has grown so wide that the resulting misrepresentations of voters’ will can be said to be undermining the principle of equality under the law as guaranteed by the Constitution.

The Diet must not waste any time starting work on a fundamental overhaul of the electoral system for the House of Councilors. The Supreme Court has already warned twice that merely adjusting the number of seats between constituencies — as the lawmakers did in time for the election this year — would not do much to correct the huge gap in the value of votes.

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