Segments in this Video

Junichiro Koizumi's Local Candidate (02:48)


Kawasaki City Council candidate Kazuhiko Yamauchi introduces himself to commuters at a train station. He asks them to continue supporting the LDP reform policy. An assistant passes out fliers.

Six Days Until Council Elections (03:07)

Yamauchi calls supporters to thank them personally. Commuters squeeze onto a subway car.

Winning Local Votes (03:36)

Yamauchi tells a property management employee that he was sent from Tokyo to Kawasaki to establish residency as an LDP representative. He inspects a faulty drainage ditch outside a shopkeeper's store and chats with schoolboys.

New to Electoral Politics (06:15)

Yamauchi's supervisors have told him to repeat his name often during speeches. During a reunion with school friends, he complains about being micro-managed by the party and compares it to a military hierarchy. Learn why the LDP recruited him.

Street Campaigning (04:29)

A Shinto priest blesses LDP campaign cars. Yamauchi describes his platform of improving childcare, reducing crime, and reforming government finance. Volunteers and party elders assist him in bowing and shaking hands with as many people as possible.

Campaign Car Route (03:30)

Yamauchi and his wife Sayuri ride around Kawasaki in separate vans with volunteers. The goal is to repeat Yamauchi's name often to increase exposure to constituents. Sayuri comments on the party dress code.

Public Appearances (03:57)

Yamauchi and campaign volunteers stand in a line and bow to morning commuters. He participates in a cultural ceremony and a senior sporting event.

Campaign Financing (03:24)

Yamauchi pays for his own campaign and cannot accept donations. A supervisor berates him for poor time management. Volunteers say he must form his own supporter's association.

Campaign Pressure (05:23)

Yamauchi's team appeals to Ishida's constituents to vote for him once, to retain the LDP council seat. Sayuri is upset because someone advised her to quit her job—if he loses, they will face financial hardship.

Koizumi Junichiro's Endorsement (05:53)

The prime minister appears at a Kawasaki rally to support Yamauchi. Yamauchi is not allowed to stand with Koizumi, due to party rules. His supervisors warn him not to turn against the LDP if he is elected.

One Day Until Council Elections (01:31)

Candidates from several parties shake hands, bow, and pass out fliers in a final attempt to sway voters.

Election Results (08:24)

Tension is high in Yamauchi's campaign office as the LDP narrowly defeats the Democrats. Supervisors are annoyed that Yamauchi must be summoned from home. They congratulate him and remind him of his place in the party hierarchy.

Credits: Campaign: The Kawasaki Candidate (00:39)

Credits: Campaign: The Kawasaki Candidate

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Campaign: The Kawasaki Candidate

Part of the Series : Why Democracy?
DVD (Chaptered) Price: $169.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $254.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $169.95



In the fall of 2005, 40-year-old, self-employed Kazuhiko "Yama-san" Yamauchi's peaceful, humdrum life was turned upside-down. Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) had suddenly chosen him as its official candidate to run for a vacant seat on the Kawasaki city council. Yama-san had zero experience in politics, no charisma, no supporters, no constituency, and no time to prepare for the impending election. The election was critical for the LDP. Adhering to the campaign tactic of "bowing to everybody, even to telephone poles," Yama-san visits local festivals, kindergarten sports events, senior gatherings, commuter train stations, and even bus stops to offer his hand to every one he sees. Can Yama-san win this heated race? Through its candid, cinema-verite style camerawork, this rare, detailed documentary of a Japanese election reveals the true nature of "democracy."

Length: 53 minutes

Item#: BVL195857

ISBN: 978-1-64867-442-6

Copyright date: ©2007

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