Osaka Restoration Association
|Founded||19 April 2010|
|Headquarters||Osaka, Osaka Prefecture, Japan|
|National affiliation||Nippon Ishin no Kai|
1 / 47
|Osaka Prefectural Assembly seats||
43 / 88
|Osaka City Assembly seats||
36 / 86
|Sakai City Assembly seats||
14 / 52
The Osaka Restoration Association (大阪維新の会 Ōsaka Ishin no Kai?), also referred to as One Osaka, is a regional political party in Osaka Prefecture, Japan. Founded in 2010 by then-Governor Tōru Hashimoto, its main platform is pursuing the Osaka Metropolis plan of merging the prefecture and some of its cities into "One Osaka" and reducing overlapping bureaucratic organizations of Osaka Prefecture and the city of Osaka.
The party is a major force in the politics within Osaka Prefecture, with the party holding the most seats in the Osaka Prefectural Assembly, Osaka City Assembly and Sakai City Assembly, as well as the positions of Governor of Osaka and mayor of three cities within the prefecture (Osaka, Moriguchi and Hirakata).
Hashimoto, a lawyer and popular TV personality, was elected Governor of Osaka in January 2008 with the support of the local branches of the Liberal Democratic Party and New Komeito. However, his support for the Osaka Metropolis plan and the restructuring of Japan's 47 prefectures into a few number of geographically large regions saw him face opposition from the mayors of Osaka and Sakai cities. In face of this opposition and frustrated with the lack of attention given to the issues by the major parties at the national level, Hashimoto announced his intention to form a regional party that would focus on the betterment of Osaka.
In February 2009, Hashimoto's plan for the prefecture to purchase the Osaka World Trade Center Building from the city and relocate the prefectural government offices into the building was defeated in the prefecutural assembly. Following this, a faction of six assembly members led by Ichirō Matsui, who was supported by Hashimoto, formed the "Liberal Democratic Party Restoration Association" (自由民主党・維新の会?). By April 2010 the group had broken away from the Liberal Democratic Party and expanded to 22 members. On 19 April 2010 it was officially registered as the Osaka Restoration Association with 30 members.
In the unified local elections in April 2011, the Osaka Restoration Association won an outright majority in the prefectural assembly and became strongest party in the assemblies of both Osaka City and Sakai City. On November 27, 2011, in an unprecedented double election, Hashimoto and Secretary-General Ichirō Matsui were elected as Mayor of Osaka City and Governor of Osaka Prefecture respectively.
In the Sakai city mayoral election held in September 2013, incumbent Osami Takeyama ran as an independent (with the support of the Liberal Democratic Party and an endorsement from the Komeito party) and defeated the Osaka Restoration Association candidate Katsutoshi Nishibayashi. Takeyama first won office in 2009 with the backing of Hashimoto (prior to the party being formed), but lost the support of the party when he changed his position regarding the Metropolis merger plan. Whilst generally in favour of reform within the prefecture, Takeyama opposed the break-up of Sakai city and had a campaign slogan of "Sakai is One" (堺はひとつ Sakai wa hitotsu?). This was the first time in the party's history that a candidate had lost a mayoral election. Takeyama received 50.69% of the vote, almost 7% more than in 2009.
In 2015, with Hashimoto as Mayor of Osaka city and Matsui as Governor of Osaka Prefecture, the party promoted a merger plan that, if successful, would see the relationship between the municipalities of Osaka and the prefecture be changed to resemble that of the Tokyo metropolis. The plan was defeated in a referendum in May 2015 by a margin of less than 1%. Following the result, Hashimoto announced he would not contest the mayoral election at the end of 2015.
The party successfully contested the "double election" of the Osaka city mayoral election and prefecture gubernatorial election held on 22 November 2015. In the mayoral election, Hirofumi Yoshimura, a former member of the national House of Representatives, was selected as the party's candidate to replace Hashimoto. Yoshimura ran on a platform of reinstating the metropolis merger plan and received 56.4% of the 1.05 million votes cast. In the gubernatorial election, Matsui also campaigned in favour of the merger and was re-elected with 64% of the 3.14 million votes cast. The double victory has been considered a boost to the party's main policy of resurrecting the metropolis merger plan.
- "維新の会メンバー" [Osaka Restoration Association Members] (in Japanese). Retrieved 18 November 2015.
- The Daily Yomiuri Nippon Ishin no Kai officially launched September 30, 2012 Retrieved on October 2, 2012
- "堺のカタチ 維持した 市長選" [Mayoral election maintains the shape of Sakai] (in Japanese). Yomiuri Shimbun. 30 September 2013. Archived from the original on 30 September 2013. Retrieved 18 November 2015.
- "Osaka rejects city reform plan; Hashimoto to retire". Yomiuri Shimbun. 18 May 2015. Archived from the original on 18 May 2015. Retrieved 17 November 2015.
- "Four file to run for Osaka mayor". Japan Times. 9 November 2015. Retrieved 17 November 2015.
- "大阪維新ダブル選圧勝" [Osaka Restoration's Strong victory in double election] (in Japanese). Kobe Shimbun. 23 November 2015. p. 1.