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New Liberal Club


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(NLC)

A Japanese conservative splinter party formed by a small group of Diet members (five from the Lower House, one from the Upper House) who left the Liberal Democratic Party in mid‐1976. They did so in protest against the corrupt practices of the ruling party which had been publicized by the Lockheed Scandal. In the House of Representatives elections of the same year, the party managed to have eighteen members elected. NLC seats were overwhelmingly won in urban areas with the votes of an unaligned electorate. Successive electoral performances never matched the dramatic success of its early days, however, and the NLC found it impossible to become more than a micro‐party. The party stressed a liberal agenda of New Conservatism, with an emphasis on individualism, freedom of expression, and the interests of urban Japan. Facing financial and organizational difficulties the party chose to enter into a coalition with the LDP after 1983 and the NLC was dissolved. Although short‐lived, the NLC provided an interesting example of the appeal that conservative politics could have beyond its traditional heartland in the countryside.

Subjects: Contemporary History (Post 1945).


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