At 1pm today the voting participation rate in the Osaka City mayoral election was a full six percentage points up on the equivalent time in the last election, at 23.94% of eligible voters. (ja)
One would assume this bodes well for Hashimoto Toru and his plan to create a more streamlined and stronger “Osaka-to” region. If I was to hazard a guess it might be on the back of an increased youth vote as Hashimoto had very vigorous youth participation in his supporter groups. Polls close at 8pm. The youth participation rate was only 20% total in the previous election.
In other news Kamei turned out to be as deluded as expected. Not only did Hashimoto dismiss the idea without a second thought but Hiranuma Takeo, who Kamei assumed he could count on for his retro-conservative grand plan to create a third pole, humiliatingly dismissed the idea ridiculing Kamei as marching to his own tune. The smell of desperation is really stinking up Nagata-cho.
Update: At three pm the rate was 32%, an almost 9% point increase (ja)