| Share
 

Junichiro Koizumi

Koizumi, Junichiro (jŏnēˈchērō kōēˈzōmē) [key], 1942–, Japanese political leader, b. Yokosuka. From a political family, he studied economics at Keio Univ. (grad. 1967). He entered politics in 1970 as a member of the Liberal Democratic party (LDP), and two years later was elected to the Diet. Koizumi served as minister of health and welfare in 1988 and from 1996 to 1997. As the leader of a grassroots element of the LDP, with a reputation as a rebel fighting against the party's entrenched conservative leadership, he was elected party president in 2001 and shortly thereafter succeeded Yoshiro Mori as prime minister. A colorful figure, he pledged to lift Japan from its economic malaise, revise its constitution, privatize government-owned businesses, modernize its political system, improve relations with its Asian neighbors, and eliminate factionalism from the LDP. Achieving those goals proved difficult, however, as reform was resisted by the entrenched bureaucracy and by LDP factions that would be affected by reform, and Koizumi's government soon came largely to resemble those of his predecessors. He did ultimately achieve cuts in public spending and make progress in deregulation; he also made a landmark visit to North Korea in 2002, which led to the establishment of diplomatic relations. Defeat of his postal privatization plan in 2005, in part by LDP Diet members, led to a snap election in which Koizumi secured a large majority in the lower house; the plan was subsequently passed. He retired as party president and prime minister in 2006.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on Junichiro Koizumi from Infoplease:

  • Junichiro Koizumi, - Junichiro Koizumi, Japanese politician, was sworn in as the country's 11th prime minister in 13 ...
  • Yoshiri Mori - Mori, Yoshiri Mori, Yoshiri, 1937–, Japanese politician, prime minister of Japan ...
  • Ryutaro Hashimoto - Hashimoto, Ryutaro Hashimoto, Ryutaro , 1937–2006, Japanese politician, b. Tokyo, grad. Keio ...
  • 2001 People in the News - 2001 People in the News Danny Almonte, Jessie Arbogast, 8, Lord Jeffrey Archer, Lori Berenson, 31, ...
  • Reaction to Sept. 2001 Tragedy - U.S. and World Leaders react to events of Sept. 11, 2001

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Japanese History: Biographies

24 X 7

Private Tutor

Click Here for Details
24 x 7 Tutor Availability
Unlimited Online Tutoring
1-on-1 Tutoring