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Premier Has Tough Debut in Parliament

August 11, 1998|From Times Wire Reports

New Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi had a rough debut in parliament as opposition parties clamored for fresh elections and accused his Cabinet of being incapable of rescuing Japan's economy. "What qualifications and ability does this new Cabinet have? Without new policies, there will be no reforms. We must dissolve the parliament," lawmaker Kansei Nakano, a member of the country's largest opposition party, the Democratic Party of Japan, said as several lawmakers broke into applause. Obuchi's Liberal Democratic Party holds a majority in the more powerful lower house of parliament, but the opposition won control of the upper house in July 12 elections and can block the passage of urgently needed economic legislation there.

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