Jul. 11, 2012 - 06:36AM JST
Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda on Tuesday came under fire from former Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama and the opposition Liberal Democratic Party for his handling of the rebels in the Democratic Party of Japan—37 of whom were expelled from the party on Monday.
Hatoyama, who was suspended for three months, said Noda should be ashamed of himself. He said that even one dissenting vote was one too many and questioned how Noda could govern the country when he can’t even govern his own party, Fuji TV reported.
Hatoyama also said he will set up a study group with other DPJ dissenters to study the contentious consumption tax bill which is the cause of the rift.
Meanwhile, LDP Secretary General Nobuteru Ishihara criticized Noda for being too lenient toward Hatoyama. Ishihara said the three-month suspension was too short, Fuji reported. He said that DPJ dissenters were becoming increasingly disobedient and said the rift could lead to a collapse of the three-party agreement that forged a compromise on the tax and social security reform bills that Noda has staked his political life on.