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社説:安保転換を問う 参院委採決強行 民意に背を向けた政権

September 18, 2015 (Mainichi Japan)
Editorial: Abe gov't turns its back on public opinion
社説:安保転換を問う 参院委採決強行 民意に背を向けた政権

Controversial legislation opening the way for Japan to exercise the right to collective self-defense was rammed through a House of Councillors special committee on security policy on Sept. 17. It was an abnormal way of approving the bills, as it cannot be confirmed whether the panel actually put the bills to a vote amid loud protests from opposition party lawmakers.
 参院平和安全法制特別委員会は安全保障関連法案の採決を強行した。野党が抵抗する中、採決が行われたかどうかすらわからない、不正常な可決だった。

The executive branch of the government failed to convince the public that the bills are either constitutional or necessary, even after over 200 hours of deliberations in both houses of the Diet. Nevertheless, the ruling coalition went ahead with the vote while being aware that it had failed to narrow a perception gap with the public over the issue. Therefore, the vote cannot be considered a conclusion arrived at through the democratic process, as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has emphasized.
 衆参両院で200時間を超す審議を経ても、政府は法案の合憲性や「なぜ必要か」について納得できる説明ができなかった。にもかかわらず、与党は民意との乖離(かいり)を自覚しながら採決に踏み切った。これでは安倍晋三首相らが強調していた「民主主義のルール」を尊重した結論とは言えまい。

 ◇正常な手続きではない

The bills were put to a vote while committee Chairman Yoshitada Konoike could not even be seen behind the pushing, shoving jumble of lawmakers scrumming around his desk in the committee room. As soon as a no-confidence motion against Konoike was voted down and he took a seat, ruling and opposition party legislators rushed to the chairman's seat and surrounded him. What Konoike said when he put the bills to a vote could not be heard. One cannot help but wonder what such a violent vote looked like in the eyes of the public.
 委員長の姿が見えない、異様な採決だった。鴻池祥肇委員長の不信任動議が否決され鴻池氏が着席すると、いきなり与党も含めた議員が取り囲んだ。委員長が採決する声も聞き取れなかった。国民の目にどう映っただろう。

The situation in the upper house shifted drastically after a local hearing on the bills was held in Yokohama on Sept. 16. The ruling coalition attempted to conclude a question-and-answer session in the special committee on the bills and put the proposed legislations to a vote, while opposition parties tried to block the move.
 参院審議の状況は16日の地方公聴会の終了を境に一変した。与党は質疑の終結と採決を図り、野党はこれを阻止しようと対立した。

Protesters staged demonstrations against the bills in many areas, including in front of the Diet building, on a daily basis, and opinion polls conducted by various media outlets show a large majority opposing passage of the legislation during the current Diet session. As the ongoing Diet session ends on Sept. 27, the ruling coalition is rushing to enact the legislation apparently for fear that demonstrations and other forms of protests against the bills could grow during the five-day holiday period beginning on Sept. 19. If the governing coalition feared public sentiment against the bills, it should have abandoned enacting the bills during the current session.
 国会周辺のデモなどの抗議活動は連日続き、各種世論調査では今国会成立に反対する意見が賛成派を大差で上回っている。27日の会期末を控え、与党が18日までの成立を急ごうとしているのは、週末や連休にかけて反対デモなどの運動が一層拡大することを警戒したためだとされる。世論をおそれたのであれば、ここで踏みとどまるべきだった。

The Abe Cabinet's biggest mistake in drawing up the security bills, and thereby open by any and all means at the administration's disposal the way for Japan to exercise the right to collective self-defense, was its failure to hold calm and measured debate on the realities of Japan's changing security environment, including China's rise.
 今回の法整備のそもそもの誤りは、中国の台頭など安全保障環境の変化に対応した冷静な議論もないまま、集団的自衛権の行使容認という結論を押し付け、実現しようとした安倍内閣の姿勢にある。

Under parliamentary democracy, legislative processes are left to the discretion of members of the Diet, who are representatives of the public. However, legislators must hold thorough debate on policy issues and try all possible roads to consensus.
 議会制民主主義の下では、国民の代表である国会議員の手に立法機能が確かに委ねられている。だが、それはあくまで熟議を重ね、合意形成の努力が尽くされるのが大前提だ。

Moreover, the security bills affect the basis of the Constitution, which stipulates that Japan must be a peaceful country. The Abe Cabinet twisted the government's 1972 official view that Japan could not exercise the right to collective self-defense to make it possible. Such being the case, many constitutional scholars have concluded that the bills are unconstitutional.
 しかも今回の法案の中身は平和国家を規定する憲法の根幹に関わる。政府は集団的自衛権行使を否定していた1972年の政府見解をねじまげて、行使に道を開いた。このため、憲法学者の多くは法案を違憲だと断じている。

The executive branch also failed to provide a clear explanation of why the development of security legislation is necessary. The government had initially placed special emphasis on minesweeping in the Strait of Hormuz in the Middle East as an example of operations that Japan can conduct by exercising the right to collective self-defense, but later stated that it does not specifically assume such a mission will take place. The government's explanation became increasingly unclear as deliberations on the bills progressed.
 法整備の必要性も、政府は最後まではっきりと説明できなかった。最初は強調していたホルムズ海峡での機雷掃海は「具体的に想定していない」と後退した。審議が進めば進むほど説明はほころんだ。

The governing coalition could have pursued common ground with key opposition parties over the bills through negotiations on modification of the bills. The executive branch submitted 11 security-related bills in a package to the Diet. However, some bills, including one on Japan's participation in U.N. peacekeeping operations, should have been separated from the package.
 国会での議論を通じ、主要な野党と修正協議で接点を探る選択肢も与党にはあったはずだ。安保関連法案は11本もの法案をたばねたものだ。国連平和維持活動(PKO)に関する部分などは切り離すべきだった。

Prime Minister Abe appears to have lacked any willingness to face the public and try to win their understanding.
 そもそも、首相は国民と正面から向き合い、理解を得ようとする発想に乏しかったのではないか。

When he dissolved the House of Representatives late last year for a snap general election, Prime Minister Abe called it the "Abenomics dissolution," and declared that he would ask voters if he should go ahead with the Abenomics economic policy mix. However, security legislation was characterized as just one of numerous election pledges. Neither did the prime minister place emphasis on the bills during his policy speech at the outset of the current Diet session.
 昨年末の衆院解散・総選挙を首相は「アベノミクス解散」と命名し、「アベノミクスを前に進めるか、止めてしまうのかを問う」と訴えた。安保法制は多くの公約のひとつとされ、首相は今国会の施政方針演説でも安保関連法案を強調しなかった。

 ◇国民の分断を避けよ

The government had failed to provide a sufficient explanation even before the bills were submitted to the legislative branch, or to show its eagerness to deepen public understanding of the proposed legislation through Diet deliberations.
 法案提出前から説明が不足していたうえ、国会で理解を深めようとする姿勢もあまり感じられなかった。

In 2013, the Abe Cabinet also forcibly enacted the Act on the Protection of Specially Designated Secrets, which the ruling Liberal Democratic Party had not even listed in its election pledges. If the administration had decided that the security measures needed by Japan exceeded the limitations set by the Constitution, the government should have sought constitutional amendments through a national referendum, should have asked the sovereign citizens of this country for their backing.
 安倍内閣は2013年、自民党公約になかった特定秘密保護法も強引に成立させた。あるべき安全保障の姿が現行憲法の枠を超えると仮に判断したのであれば、主権者である国民の投票による憲法改正というゴールを追求すべきだった。

Scholars, legal experts, local assemblies and people across the generations have launched campaigns against the security legislation. If the government attempts to change basic national policy without making the issue a point of contention during an election campaign, peaceful demonstrations are one of voters' limited means of protest. Aki Okuda, a member of the Students Emergency Action for Liberal Democracy-s (SEALDs) organization, told a national hearing at the upper house special panel, "It's you members of the ruling bloc that created the current situation." He was right on-point.
 法整備に対し、学界、法曹界、地方議会に加え、幅広い世代を巻き込んだ広範な反対運動が起きている。選挙の争点ともならないまま政府が国の骨格を変えようとすれば、有権者が平和的なデモで意思表示することは限られた抗議の手段となる。学生団体「SEALDs(シールズ)」の奥田愛基(あき)さんが特別委の中央公聴会で「現在の状況を作ったのは与党のみなさんだ」と指摘したのは的外れではない。

Most of the opposition parties are strongly opposed to the bills. It is true that opposition parties played a certain role in grilling the government over the contents of the bills and the administration's attitude toward the issue through Diet debate.
 民主党など大半の野党は採決に強く反発している。論戦を通じ、野党が法案の中身や政権の姿勢の追及に一定の役割を果たしたのは事実だ。

However, opposition parties' failure to block the ruling coalition from putting the bills to a vote is not attributable solely to a lack of numbers in the Diet. The DPJ failed to produce any counter-proposal to the government-sponsored legislation. Despite its criticism of the bills, the DPJ has failed to gain support from voters. It is also true that the government thought that railroading the bills would not deal a fatal blow to the administration, as the opposition parties lack strong public backing.
 ただ、採決を阻止できなかった原因は議員の数不足だけではない。民主党は集団的自衛権の行使について結局、対案を示さなかった。法案への批判にもかかわらず、有権者の野党への期待はふくらんでいない。不正常な強行採決も与党が「政権を失うほどの打撃にならない」と野党の足元をみたことは否定できまい。

For Prime Minister Abe, ramming the bills through the upper house panel may recall his grandfather Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi's administration's railroading of a resolution to ratify an amended Japan-U.S. Security Treaty.
 首相にとって、批判の中での強行劇は祖父、岸信介首相がかつて実現した日米安保条約改定の再現なのかもしれない。

However, politics that makes light of consensus would split the public. Any political method that places priority on the administration's goals at the cost of public understanding would fundamentally damage the public's trust in politics.
 だが、合意をないがしろにした政治は、国民を分断してしまう。政権の目的を優先させ、国民の理解を二の次にするような手法は政治への信頼を根底から損なう。

Serious questions remain as to whether laws deeply relevant to basic national policy should be created through such reckless procedures. We once again express stiff opposition to enacting the security legislation.
 国のありかたに関わる法律をこれほど乱暴な手続きで作っていいのか。成立に改めて強く反対する。

毎日新聞 2015年09月18日 東京朝刊
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by kiyoshimat | 2015-09-19 11:49 | 英字新聞

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