Prime Minister Shinzo Abe proclaimed that he had called this month’s snap election two years early as a referendum on “Abenomics” reforms. He implied that armed, with a new popular mandate, he will have more power to promote reforms and rescue the sickly economy.

If he really believes that, you have to wonder what he has been smoking. With a bruising two-thirds majority in the Lower House, 325 coalition seats out of 480, Abe already had power to do whatever he wanted — witness the way he promoted pet political programs, including reinterpreting the Constitution’s Article 9 and the new state secrets law.

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