Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda reshuffled his Cabinet in an effort to win opposition backing for his bill to double the consumption tax, after his bid to heal a breach in the ruling party failed.
Ichiro Ozawa, Japan’s most powerful politician, was recommended to face criminal charges over a finance scandal involving his aides, increasing pressure on Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama to dismiss his former boss.
Naoto Kan ’s pledge to step down as prime minister set off a contest to select Japan’s next leader, adding to the risk of delays in reconstruction and revenue bills needed to restore growth and assuage credit concerns.
New Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda faced political oblivion 15 years ago. His comeback required the kind of perseverance he will need to last longer than the five men since 2006 who preceded him.
The Democratic Party of Japan came to power in 2009 pledging to restore vitality to a country burdened by deflation, an aging population and the world’s largest debt . Now, the party itself needs resuscitation.