Of the many local elections held in Japan earlier this month, the one that captured national attention was of course the September 11 election for the governor of Okinawa Prefecture.
The election pitted incumbent Governor Denny Tamaki, backed by the Japanese Communist Party and others on the left, against former Ginowan mayor Atsushi Sakima, backed by the Liberal Democratic Party and Komeito. Sakima challenged and lost to Tamaki four years ago in 2018. Also in the running was independent Mikio Shimoji, a former Lower House member who was seen, due to his conservative background, as a spoiler harming the Sakima outlook.
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