The media is abuzz with reporting on Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga. Ever since earning the nickname “Reiwa Ojisan” (“Uncle Reiwa”) by presenting Japan’s new era name on April 1, news outlets and television programs have been speculating that he could be the successor to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

The media whirlwind continued as Suga made a rare trip overseas to Washington and New York earlier this month in what some labeled his diplomatic debut. Many people are now ready to call Suga the front-runner to replace Abe when his run finally ends, but I am not among them.

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