Fukuda Steps In as Japan's PM

He bags easy victory in parliament vote
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 25, 2007 5:11 AM CDT
Former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe enters the chamber of the lower house of parliament in Tokyo Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2007. Abe and his Cabinet resigned earlier in the day, clearing the way for new ruling...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Lawmaker Yasuo Fukuda, the 71-year-old son of a former Japanese prime minister, has now taken the top job himself after winning a parliamentary election. The new leader of the dominant Liberal Democratic Party bagged 338 votes in the lower house, 100 votes more than the majority he needed, the BBC reports.

Former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who resigned after a series of scandals and loss of public support, officially stepped aside earlier today. He had been in the hospital for stress-related ailments since announcing his resignation last week. The moderate new prime minister promised to try to stabilize Japan's shaken government.