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VOX POPULI: Exit of ‘eccentric’ Niigata governor in mysterious manner a loss via The Asahi Shimbun

[…]It appears that he has been losing the support of the local political community although he has denied this has anything to do with his decision not to seek re-election.

The fact is, while the ruling Liberal Democratic Party was dragging its feet on endorsing Izumida, the local associations of mayors and municipalities took the unprecedented action of issuing a document criticizing the prefectural government.

The document takes issue with Izumida’s “over-the-top words and actions” and “refusal to bend his opinion.”

In a nutshell, Izumida makes it difficult for the prefectural government to work with the local municipalities as well as neighboring prefectures. And members of the prefectural assembly call him an “eccentric.”

Izumida’s achievement is that he has consistently opposed the restart of the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear power plant operated by Tokyo Electric Power Co.

He told TEPCO that the causes of the 2011 disaster at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant must be verified before the utility can even begin to think of restarting the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa reactors. This totally stands to reason.

It has also come to light that TEPCO’s former president had instructed employees not to use the term “meltdowns” in connection with the Fukushima disaster.

Izumida probably would not have been able to do what he has done, were he not as forceful in his ways as to be seen as an eccentric.

When I think about all this, I feel it’s a shame that Izumida is bowing out.

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