Chapter

“Last Service to the Fatherland”: The House of Peers Addresses Constitutional Revision

Ray A. Moore and Donald L. Robinson

in Partners for Democracy

Published in print November 2002 | ISBN: 9780195151169
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199833917 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/019515116X.003.0021
 “Last Service to the Fatherland”: The House of Peers Addresses Constitutional Revision

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Having passed the lower house, the proposed revision came next before the House of Peers. The aristocratic upper house would exist no longer under the new constitution, yet its approval was critical to the project's legitimacy. Ch. 19 tells how the proposed revision came under severe attack by peers, but was also stoutly defended. The principal defenders, besides Kanamori, were a highly respected lawyer, Takayanagi Kenzō, and Nanbara Shigeru, president of the University of Tokyo; the scholarly Sasaki Sōichi and a fierce and eloquent peer, Sawada Ushimaro, led the critics. Again the role of the emperor under the new charter (kokutai) was an object of earnest interest, as was Article 9 and the bill of rights.

Keywords: bill of rights; House of Peers; Takayanagi Kenzō; kokutai; renunciation of war (Article 9); role of the emperor; Nanbara Shigeru; Sasaki Sōichi; Kanamori Tokujirō; Sawada Ushimaro

Chapter.  6244 words. 

Subjects: Politics

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