英総選挙 伝統の2大政党制に試練の時

The Yomiuri Shimbun (May. 10, 2010)
Britain's 2-party system turned on its head
英総選挙 伝統の2大政党制に試練の時(5月9日付・読売社説)

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown's Labour Party was defeated in the general election on Thursday as the Conservative Party made dramatic gains to become Britain's largest party. The Liberal Democrats, the third-largest party, failed to increase their seats, contrary to earlier expectations.
 英国の総選挙で与党・労働党が敗れ、野党の保守党が第1党に返り咲いた。第3党の自由民主党は事前の予測に反して議席を伸ばせなかった。

However, the Conservatives fell short of winning an absolute majority of the 650 seats in the House of Commons, so the shape of the new British government still is undecided.
 しかし、保守党も過半数に届かず、新政権の姿は見通せない。

Britain's traditional two-party system, under which one of the two largest parties forms a stable government after securing a majority of seats, has begun to crumble.
 2大政党のいずれかが過半数を制し、即座に単独で強力な政府を樹立する。この伝統ある英国の2大政党制が揺らぎ始めたということだろう。

In countries that have adopted a proportional representation system, it is common for no party to secure a majority of seats. However, it is the first time since 1974 for Britain, which has a simple single-seat constituency system, to face a hung parliament.
 過半数に届く政党がないのは、比例代表制を導入している国では何も珍しいことではない。だが、単純小選挙区制を採用する英国では36年ぶりだ。

If either the Conservatives or the Labour Party want to form a stable government, they must both consider the coalition option by making overtures to the Liberal Democratic Party and smaller parties.
 保守、労働党のどちらが政権を担うにせよ、自民党や少数政党との連立工作が必要になる。

Whether a new administration can be launched smoothly is a challenge both major parties face.
円滑に新政権を発足させられるか、試練の時と言えるだろう。

===

Tories aided by Greece's woes

The Conservatives have become the largest party in Britain for the first time in 13 years, partly due to the euro crisis triggered by Greece's fiscal woes. The latest turmoil obviously helped the Tories, who do not want Britain to become a eurozone member and aim to regain the country's policy independence from the European Union.
 今選挙で13年ぶりに第1党が交代した一因には、ギリシャの財政危機が引き起こしたユーロ危機がある。ユーロ加盟に反対し、欧州連合(EU)から政策上の独立性を取り戻そうとする保守党の追い風になったのは間違いない。

The number of immigrants in Britain has risen to 14 percent of its total working population. The Conservatives' promise to stop the influx of immigrants to prevent the employment situation from worsening apparently appealed to the voters.
 英国の就業年齢人口に占める移民の割合は14%にまで増加した。保守党が雇用情勢の悪化につながる移民の増加に歯止めをかけると訴えたことも、有権者の不安な心に届いたのだろう。

However, besides policies concerning the EU and immigrants, there are no distinctive differences between the two largest parties.
 しかし、対EU、移民政策を除けば、2大政党には政策上の際だった差異がない。

Both Labour and the Conservatives aim to make free competition consistent with social justice. In the general election, the swing in the vote was not significant enough to result in a landslide win. This is because the two parties failed to give the voters a range of options.
 労働党も保守党も、今や自由競争と社会的公正の両立を目指すようになった。今回、一方を大勝させるほど民意が大きく振れなかったのは、2大政党が有権者に「選択の幅」を与えられなかったせいでもあろう。

Britain's two largest parties have combined to win more than 90 percent of the vote in most general elections since the end of World War II. But the percentage fell below 70 percent in the general election in 2005 and further dropped in Thursday's general election. With its first-past-the-post system, the diverse will of the people is not reflected in the number of seats won.
 戦後は9割を超えていた2大政党の合計得票率は、前回2005年の総選挙で7割を切り、今回さらに減った。こうした民意の多様化が議席に反映されにくいのが、単純小選挙区制である。

===

Calls for electoral reform

As a result, a move calling for electoral reform has begun to emerge.
 このため、選挙制度改革を求める動きも出てきた。

The Labour Party has proposed a change to the single-seat constituency system under which people would vote for more than one candidate, marking their ballots in order of preference. The Liberal Democratic Party is calling for a proportional representation system. The coalition talks will probably take up electoral reform.
 労働党は優先順位をつけて複数候補に投票する小選挙区制へ、自民党は比例代表制への転換を主張している。連立協議では、選挙制度改革も議題に上るだろう。

During the general election campaign, a U.S.-style television debate was introduced for the first time and Liberal Democratic Party leader Nick Clegg soared in popularity at one point. The reason why this failed to lead to good results for his party can be put down to the existing electoral system.
 今選挙戦では米国流のテレビ討論が初めて導入され、自民党党首の人気が一時、急上昇した。それが結果につながらなかったのも、今の選挙制度と無縁ではない。

In Japan, a two-party system finally emerged that allowed for a change of government. As Japan's politics is modeled on Britain's, we should closely watch what changes are made in that country.
 政権交代可能な2大政党制の入り口に立ったばかりの日本も、その範とした英国政治の変化をしっかり見つめる必要があろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, May 9, 2010)
(2010年5月9日01時08分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2010-05-10 09:53 | 英字新聞

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