Regime Change

Japan's Historic Election

It seems the recession could claim yet another seemingly permanent institution: Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party. CNN reports that the island nation is heading for a historic shift at the ballot box, as the LDP has controlled the Japanese parliament almost continuously for more than five decades. Approval ratings for prime minister Taro Aso have dipped to the teens, while Democratic Party of Japan leader Yukio Hatoyama has been mobbed by supporters at rallies, where he offers an Obama-style message of change. Polls show that the DPJ will likely nab 300 of the 480 seats up for election on Sunday in the lower house of parliament, meaning that for the first time ever, it will rule the world's second-largest economy.