Two of America’s key Asian allies will hold elections in December to select their leaders and determine which policy path to follow. Japan’s lower house of parliament election on December 16 will decide whether Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda and the Democratic Party of Japan retain their positions or are abandoned in favor of returning Shinzo Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party to power. South Korean President Lee Myung-bak is constitutionally prohibited from a second term. The South Korean electorate faces a stark choice between conservative Park Geun-hye and progressive Moon Jae-in.
Join us as a distinguished panel of experts preview the two elections and assess their impact on whether the two countries maintain or alter their economic and foreign policies. Although Abe is predicted to win the Japanese election, it remains uncertain with whom he will forge a ruling coalition. In South Korea, the withdrawal of Ahn Cheol-soo leaves the presidential election as a two-horse race but questions remain whether Moon can count on Ahn’s supporters to defeat Park.
The results of the two elections will impact South Korean and Japanese relations with the United States, China, and each other, as well as how to deal with a nuclear North Korea and an increasingly assertive China.
More About the Speakers
Dr. Michael Green
Senior Advisor and Japan Chair, Center for Strategic and International Studies, and Associate Professor, Georgetown University
Dr. Gordon Flake
Executive Director, The Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation
Senior Research Fellow, Northeast Asia, The Heritage Foundation
Director, Asian Studies Center