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14 November 2017, 05:59 | Glen Norman
Yuriko Koike will resign as leader of the Party of Hope, sources close to the matter said on Tuesday, after the fledgling party formed by the popular Tokyo governor performed poorly in the general election last month.
Koike's announcement comes following a dismal performance by the Party of Hope in the general election here on October 22.
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Koike established the party in late September and fielded candidates nationwide, challenging Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's ruling Liberal Democratic Party.
She will likely focus on her role as leader of the nation's capital.
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"I want to leave national political matters to Diet members".
The ruling coalition of the LDP and Komeito retained a two-thirds majority in the Lower House. A media-savvy former TV announcer and veteran lawmaker who served as environment and defence minister, Koike defied the LDP to run for Tokyo governor a year ago and trounced her ruling-party rival. Koike's local party, Tomin First no Kai (Tokyo residents first association), had racked up a major victory against the ruling Liberal Democratic Party in the Tokyo metropolitan assembly election in July.
She was also criticized for her part in a bungled realignment of opposition forces and lost some public support for her decision not to absorb liberal members from the Democratic Party. Support for the Party of Hope was a mere 3.2 per cent against 9.3 per cent for the CDPJ and 37.1 per cent for the LDP, in an NHK survey released on Monday.
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