|Prime Minister of Japan|
Emblem of the Prime Minister of Japan
|Appointer||HM The Emperor|
|Term length||Four years or fewer, renewable indefinitely.|
|Inaugural holder||Itō Hirobumi|
|Formation||22 December 1885|
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politics and government of
The Prime Minister of Japan(内閣総理大臣Naikaku-sōri-daijin, or Shushō(首相)) is the head of government of Japan. The Prime Minister is appointed by the Emperor of Japan after being designated by the National Diet and must enjoy the confidence of the House of Representatives to remain in office. He is the head of the Cabinet and appoints and dismisses the other Ministers of State. The literal translation of the Japanese name for the office is Minister for the Comprehensive Administration of (or the Presidency over) the Cabinet.
The head of government is either the highest or second highest official in the executive branch of a sovereign state, a federated state, or a self-governing colony, who often presides over a cabinet, a group of ministers or secretaries who lead executive departments. "Head of government" is often differentiated from "head of state", as they may be separate positions, individuals, or roles depending on the country.
Japan is an island country in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies off the eastern coast of the Asian continent and stretches from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and the Philippine Sea in the south.
The Imperial Investiture is an official inauguration ceremony whereby the Emperor of Japan formally appoints the designated Chief Justice or Prime Minister of Japan to office.
Before the adoption of the Meiji Constitution, Japan had in practice no written constitution. Originally, a Chinese-inspired legal system known as ritsuryō was enacted in the late Asuka period and early Nara period. It described a government based on an elaborate and rational meritocratic bureaucracy, serving, in theory, under the ultimate authority of the Emperor; although in practice, real power was often held elsewhere, such as in the hands of the Fujiwara clan, who intermarried with the Imperial Family in the Heian period, or by the ruling shōgun . Theoretically, the last ritsuryō code, the Yōrō Code enacted in 752, was still in force at the time of the Meiji Restoration.
The Constitution of the Empire of Japan, known informally as the Meiji Constitution, was the constitution of the Empire of Japan which had the proclamation on February 11, 1889, and had enacted since November 29, 1890 until May 2, 1947. Enacted after the Meiji Restoration in 1868, it provided for a form of mixed constitutional and absolute monarchy, based jointly on the Prussian and British models. In theory, the Emperor of Japan was the supreme leader, and the Cabinet, whose Prime Minister would be elected by a Privy Council, were his followers; in practice, the Emperor was head of state but the Prime Minister was the actual head of government. Under the Meiji Constitution, the Prime Minister and his Cabinet were not necessarily chosen from the elected members of the group.
A constitution is an aggregate of fundamental principles or established precedents that constitute the legal basis of a polity, organisation or other type of entity, and commonly determine how that entity is to be governed.
Ritsuryō (律令) is the historical law system based on the philosophies of Confucianism and Chinese Legalism in Japan. The political system in accord to Ritsuryō is called "Ritsuryō-sei" (律令制). Kyaku (格) are amendments of Ritsuryō, Shiki (式) are enactments.
Under this system, the Daijō-daijin (太政大臣, Chancellor of the Realm) was the head of the Daijō-kan (Department of State), the highest organ of Japan's pre-modern Imperial government during the Heian period and until briefly under the Meiji Constitution with the appointment of Sanjō Sanetomi in 1871. The office was replaced in 1885 with the appointment of Itō Hirobumi to the new position of Prime Minister, four years before the enactment of the Meiji Constitution, which mentions neither the Cabinet nor the position of Prime Minister explicitly. It took its current form with the adoption of the Constitution of Japan in 1947.
The Daijō-daijin or Dajō-daijin was the head of the Daijō-kan during and after the Nara period and briefly under the Meiji Constitution. Equivalent to the Chinese Taishi (太師).
The Daijō-kan or Dajō-kan, also known as the Great Council of State, was (i) (Daijō-kan) the highest organ of Japan's premodern Imperial government under Ritsuryō legal system during and after the Nara period or (ii) (Dajō-kan) the highest organ of Japan's government briefly restored to power after the Meiji Restoration, which was replaced by the Cabinet.
The Heian period is the last division of classical Japanese history, running from 794 to 1185. The period is named after the capital city of Heian-kyō, or modern Kyōto. It is the period in Japanese history when Buddhism, Taoism and other Chinese influences were at their height. The Heian period is also considered the peak of the Japanese imperial court and noted for its art, especially poetry and literature. Although the Imperial House of Japan had power on the surface, the real power was in the hands of the Fujiwara clan, a powerful aristocratic family who had intermarried with the imperial family. Many emperors actually had mothers from the Fujiwara family. Heian (平安) means "peace" in Japanese.
To date, 62 people have served this position. The current Prime Minister is Shinzō Abe, who re-took office on December 26, 2012. He is the first former Prime Minister to return to office since 1948, and the 2nd longest serving Prime Minister to date.
Shinzō Abe is a Japanese politician who has been Prime Minister of Japan and President of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) since 2012. He previously served as Prime Minister from 2006 to 2007 and Chief Cabinet Secretary from 2005 to 2006. In late August 2019, Abe surpassed Eisaku Satō to become the second-longest serving prime minister in Japanese history, and the longest-serving Prime Minister in post-war Japan. Abe will surpass this milestone and become the longest serving incumbent if he is still in office on 19 November 2019.
The Prime Minister is designated by both houses of the Diet, before the conduct of any other business. For that purpose, each conducts a ballot under the run-off system. If the two houses choose different individuals, then a joint committee of both houses is appointed to agree on a common candidate. Ultimately, however, if the two houses do not agree within ten days, the decision of the House of Representatives is deemed to be that of the Diet. Therefore, the House of Representatives can theoretically ensure the appointment of any Prime Minister it wants.The candidate is then presented with his or her commission, and formally appointed to office by the Emperor.
The National Diet is Japan's bicameral legislature. It is composed of a lower house called the House of Representatives, and an upper house, called the House of Councillors. Both houses of the Diet are directly elected under parallel voting systems. In addition to passing laws, the Diet is formally responsible for selecting the Prime Minister. The Diet was first convened as the Imperial Diet in 1889 as a result of adopting the Meiji Constitution. The Diet took its current form in 1947 upon the adoption of the post-war constitution, which considers it the highest organ of state power. The National Diet Building is in Nagatachō, Chiyoda, Tokyo.
The two-round system is a voting method used to elect a single winner, where the voter casts a single vote for their chosen candidate. However, if no candidate receives the required number of votes, then those candidates having less than a certain proportion of the votes, or all but the two candidates receiving the most votes, are eliminated, and a second round of voting is held.
The Emperor of Japan is the head of the Imperial Family and the head of state of Japan. Under the 1947 constitution, he is defined as "the symbol of the State and of the unity of the people." Historically, he is also the highest authority of the Shinto religion. In Japanese, the emperor is called Tennō, literally "heavenly sovereign". In English, the use of the term Mikado for the emperor was once common, but is now considered obsolete.
In practice, the Prime Minister is almost always the leader of the majority party in the House of Representatives, or the leader of the senior partner in the governing coalition.
The Japan Self-Defense Forces, JSDF, also referred to as the Self-Defense Forces (SDF), Japan Defense Forces (JDF), or the Japanese armed forces, are the unified military forces of Japan that were established in 1954, and are controlled by the Ministry of Defense. The JSDF ranked as the world's fourth most-powerful military in conventional capabilities in a Credit Suisse report in 2015 and it has the world's eighth-largest military budget. In recent years they have been engaged in international peacekeeping operations including UN peacekeeping.
Yasuhiro Nakasone is a Japanese politician who served as Prime Minister of Japan and President of the Liberal Democratic Party from 1982 to 1987. He was a member of the House of Representatives for more than 50 years. He is best known for pushing through the privatization of state-owned companies, and for helping to revitalize Japanese nationalism during and after his term as prime minister. He turned 100 on 27 May 2018, and as of 2019, he is the oldest living state leader at the age of 101.
In most other constitutional monarchies, the monarch is nominal chief executive, while being bound by convention to act on the advice of the cabinet. In contrast, the Constitution of Japan explicitly vests executive power in the Cabinet, of which the Prime Minister is the leader. His countersignature is required for all laws and Cabinet orders. While most ministers in parliamentary democracies have some freedom of action within the bounds of cabinet collective responsibility, the Japanese Cabinet is effectively an extension of the Prime Minister's authority.
Located near the Diet building, the Office of the Prime Minister of Japan is called the Kantei (官邸). The original Kantei served from 1929 until 2002, when a new building was inaugurated to serve as the current Kantei. The old Kantei was then converted into the Official Residence, or Kōtei(公邸). The Kōtei lies to the southwest of the Kantei, and is linked by a walkway.
The Prime Minister of Japan travels in a Lexus LS 600h L,the official transport for the head of government, or an unmodified Toyota Century escorted by a police motorcade of numerous Toyota Celsiors.
For long distance air travel, Japan maintains two Boeing 747-400 aircraft mostly for the Prime Minister of Japan, the Emperor, Empress and other members of the Imperial Family, operated by the Japan Air Self-Defense Force.
They have the radio callsigns Japanese Air Force One and Japanese Air Force Two when operating on official business, and Cygnus One and Cygnus Two when operating outside of official business (e.g., on training flights). The aircraft always fly together on government missions, with one serving as the primary transport and the other serving as a backup with maintenance personnel on board. The aircraft are officially referred to as Japanese government exclusive aircraft(日本国政府専用機Nippon-koku seifu sen'yōki).
The aircraft were constructed at the Boeing factory at the same time as the U.S. Air Force One VC-25s, though the U.S. aircraft were built to the 747-200 design, while the Japanese aircraft were built to the more contemporary 747-400 design. Both Japanese aircraft were delivered in 1990.The 747s will be replaced by new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in fiscal year 2019.
Until the mid-1930s, the Prime Minister of Japan was normally granted a hereditary peerage ( kazoku ) prior to leaving office if he had not already been ennobled. Titles were usually bestowed in the ranks of count, viscount or baron, depending on the relative accomplishments and status of the Prime Minister. The two highest ranks, marquess and prince, were only bestowed upon highly distinguished statesmen, and were not granted to a Prime Minister after 1928. The last Prime Minister who was a peer was Baron Kijūrō Shidehara, who served as Prime Minister from October 1945 to May 1946. The peerage was abolished when the Constitution of Japan came into effect in May 1947.
Certain eminent Prime Ministers have been awarded the Order of the Chrysanthemum, typically in the degree of Grand Cordon. The highest honour in the Japanese honours system, the Collar of the Order of the Chrysanthemum, has only been conferred upon select Prime Ministers and eminent statesmen; the last such award to a living Prime Minister was to Saionji Kinmochi in 1928. More often, the Order of the Chrysanthemum has been a posthumous distinction; the Collar of the order was last awarded posthumously to former Prime Minister Eisaku Satō in June 1975. The Grand Cordon has typically been posthumously awarded; the most recent such award was to Ryutaro Hashimoto in July 2006. Currently, Yasuhiro Nakasone is the only living former Prime Minister to hold the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Chrysanthemum, which he received in 1997.
After relinquishing office, the Prime Minister is normally accorded the second or senior third rank in the court order of precedence, and is usually raised to the senior second rank posthumously. Certain distinguished Prime Ministers have been posthumously raised to the first rank; the last such award was to Sato Eisaku in 1975. Since the 1920s, following their tenure in office, Prime Ministers have typically been conferred with the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Paulownia Flowers (until 2003 a special higher class of the Order of the Rising Sun), depending on tenure and eminence. However, honours may be withheld due to misconduct or refusal on the part of the Prime Minister (for example, Kiichi Miyazawa).
Duke Katsura Tarō was a Japanese general within the Imperial Japanese Army, and a politician who remains the longest-serving Prime Minister of Japan to date, having served three terms from 1901 to 1906, 1908 to 1911 and 1912 to 1913.
The Constitution of Japan is the fundamental law of Japan. It was enacted on 3 May 1947, as a new constitution for a post-war Japan.
Count Kuroda Kiyotaka, also known as Kuroda Ryōsuke, was a Japanese politician of the Meiji era. He was Prime Minister of Japan from 1888 to 1889.
Duke Yamagata Aritomo, also known as Yamagata Kyōsuke, was a Japanese field marshal in the Imperial Japanese Army and twice Prime Minister of Japan. He was one of the main architects of the military and political foundations of early modern Japan. Yamagata Aritomo can be seen as the father of Japanese militarism.
Marquess Ōkuma Shigenobu was a Japanese politician during the Empire of Japan and the Prime Minister of Japan in 1898 and from 1914 to 1916. Ōkuma was also an early advocate of Western science and culture in Japan, and founder of Waseda University.
Count Kiyoura Keigo was a Japanese politician. He was the Prime Minister of Japan in 1924, during the period which historians have called the "Taishō Democracy".
Count Katō Takaaki was a Japanese politician, diplomat, and Prime Minister of Japan from 1924 until his death on 28 January 1926, during the period which historians have called "Taishō Democracy". He was also known as Katō Kōmei.
The House of Representatives is the lower house of the National Diet of Japan. The House of Councillors is the upper house.
Keizō Obuchi was a Japanese politician who served as Prime Minister of Japan from 1998 to 2000, and was elected to the House of Representatives twelve times. His political career ended prematurely when, in early 2000, he suffered a serious, and ultimately fatal, stroke.
The Cabinet of Japan is the executive branch of the government of Japan. It consists of the Prime Minister, who is appointed by the Emperor after being designated by the National Diet, and up to nineteen other members, called Ministers of State. The Prime Minister is designated by the Diet, and the remaining ministers are appointed and dismissed by the Prime Minister. The Cabinet is collectively responsible to the Diet and must resign if a motion of no confidence is adopted by the Diet.
The Chief Cabinet Secretary of Japan is a Minister of State who is responsible for directing the Cabinet Secretariat of Japan. The main function of the Chief Cabinet Secretary is to coordinate the policies of ministries and agencies in the executive branch. The Chief Cabinet Secretary serves as the government's press secretary, conducts policy research, prepares materials to be discussed at cabinet meetings, and, in time of national crisis, coordinates ministries and agencies of the executive branch. The Chief Cabinet Secretary is customarily nominated as the first in line to serve as temporary Acting Prime Minister in case the Prime Minister is unable to serve due to death or other grave reasons until a new Prime Minister is appointed. The Chief Cabinet Secretary's office is located on the fifth floor of the Prime Minister's official residence in Tokyo.
Prince Sanjō Sanetomi was a Japanese Imperial court noble and statesman at the time of the Meiji Restoration. He held many high-ranking offices in the Meiji government.
The Japanese Air Force One and Japanese Air Force Two are the radio callsigns of the two Boeing 777-300ER aircraft used by the government of Japan for overseas travel by the Emperor, Prime Minister and other high-ranking officials. Each aircraft has a capacity of 140 passengers and can be used for emergency evacuations of Japanese citizens and overseas deployment of Japan Self-Defense Forces personnel. The aircraft are operated by the Japan Air Self-Defense Force.
Contains translated material from the corresponding Japanese Wikipedia article. Incomplete; may be expanded with translations from the corresponding Japanese Wikipedia article.
The government of Japan is a constitutional monarchy in which the power of the Emperor is limited and is relegated primarily to ceremonial duties. As in many other states, the Government is divided into three branches: the Legislative branch, the Executive branch, and the Judicial branch.
The Cabinet Secretariat is an agency in the Japanese government, headed by the Chief Cabinet Secretary. It organizes the Cabinet's public relations, coordinates ministries and agencies, collects intelligence for the government, and organizes miscellaneous other tasks for the Cabinet, including the Prime Minister's office (Kantei) and residence (Kōtei).
The Okada Cabinet governed the Empire of Japan under the leadership of prime minister Keisuke Okada from 1934 to 1936. Okada was appointed on July 8, 1934 after predecessor Saitō Makoto had resigned over the Teijin Incident. Okada's appointment dashed hopes for a revival of political party influence, his cabinet was the second "national unity cabinet" after the Saitō Cabinet that had marked the end of the party rule of the 1920s and early 1930s, the so-called Taishō Democracy. Key ministers came from the bureaucracy and the military, other posts were held by politicians mostly from the minority Minseitō and the Shōwakai, a militarist breakaway group from the majority Seiyūkai that had refused to let its members join the Okada Cabinet.
The Murayama Cabinet governed Japan under the leadership of Prime Minister Tomiichi Murayama from 1994 until a 1995 Cabinet Reshuffle. Murayama was elected prime minister by the National Diet on 29 June 1994 after the threat of a no-confidence vote had brought down the previous minority Hata Cabinet. Murayama's and his cabinet's formal investiture by the Emperor took place one day later.
The Katayama Cabinet governed Japan under the leadership of Prime Minister Tetsu Katayama from May 1947 to March 1948. It was the first cabinet under the postwar constitution.
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