Prime Minister Naoto Kan defeated a no-confidence motion today over his handling of Japan's triple disasters, but the victory may be short lived—he said he is willing to resign once the country's recovery kicks in. Kan, who has been criticized for delays in the construction of temporary housing and a lack of transparency about evacuation information in the nuclear crisis, won by a margin of 293-152 in the 480-seat lower house of parliament.
Kan, in office just one year, is also embroiled in a debate about compensation for victims. Before today's parliamentary session, he urged lawmakers to let him stay on and push ahead with measures to bring the country through the crisis, but in a nod to his many critics, he acknowledged "shortcomings" and said he would consider stepping down after the recovery firms up. Though he did not specify when that might be, Japanese media reported he could stay on for a few months. (Read more Naoto Kan stories.)