Japan Table of Contents
Like the Democratic Socialist Party, the tiny Social Democratic Alliance was formed, in 1978, by defectors from the Japan Socialist Party. A non-Marxist party in the social democratic tradition, it won four seats in the February 1990 general election and retained these seats in the July 1993 election. The Shinseito was founded in June 1993 by former finance minister Hata Tsutomu and former LDP secretary general Ozawa Ichiro. Made up mainly of LDP defectors, Shinseito gained 55 seats in the July 1993 election and is a major element of the Hosokawa coalition. The party tends to be conservative on foreign and defense policy issues. The Sakigake also was formed by LDP defectors in June 1993. It gained thirteen seats in the July 1993 election. Led by Takemura Masayoshi and Sonoda Hiroyuki, it also joined the Hosokawa coalition. Although it, like the Shinseito, was described as a center-right reformist party, members of the Sakigake were "wary of the strength" of the Shinseito, especially the Ozawa faction. The Japan New Party, led by Prime Minister Hosokawa Morihiro, was formed in May 1992 by former members of the LDP disgusted with LDP policies and concerned with prompting political reform. The thirty-five members of the House of Representatives that it elected in the July 1993 election are part of the Hosokawa coalition.
A relatively large number of candidates ran as independents in general elections. Thirty of them were elected in the July 1993 balloting, but the majority later affiliated themselves with other parties. In August 1993, eight seats in the House of Representatives were listed as independent, five were affiliated with the LDP, and three with the Hosokawa coalition.
Data as of January 1994