Alfonso Hatoyama


Alfonso Hatoyama
하또야마아루혼쏘
Taro Aso in World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos (cropped).jpg
Hatoyama in 2005
42nd President of Marirana
In office
28th January 2003 – 12th November 2006
Suspended: 11th September 2006 – 12th November 2006
Prime MinisterEduardo Profumo
Roberto Vernizzi
Preceded byGiordano Falcomatà
Succeeded byRoberto Vernizzi (acting)
Leader of the United National Party
Assumed office
12th August 2009
Preceded byPost established
Governor of Ritaldi
In office
14th March 1995 – 17th July 2002
Preceded byGianfranco Monti
Succeeded byFranco Scotti
Leader of the Pole of Good Government
In office
7th March 1994 – 12th August 2009
Preceded byPost established
Succeeded byPost abolished
Personal details
Born (1941-06-13) June 13, 1941 (age 79)
Flag of Marirana.png Santa Maria, San Marco, Marirana
Political partyUnited National Party
Other political
affiliations
Party of National Reconstruction (1976-1980)
Pole of Good Government (1994-2010)
Spouse(s)1
Children3
Alma materUniversity of Aquinas
OccupationPolitician
Economist
Military service
AllegianceMarirana Marirana
Branch/serviceMarirana Mariranan Army
Years of service1957-1959
Unit6th National Division

Alfonso Hatoyama (Senrian: 하또야마아루혼쏘, Hatoyama Aruhonso; born June 13th 1941) is a Mariranan politician who served as the 42nd President of Marirana from his election in 2003 to his impeachment for bribery and racketeering in 2006. He is the founder of the right-wing United National Party and was a candidate in the 2017-18 presidential election where he lost to left-wing candidate Lorenzo Occhetto.

The son of Senrian immigrants, to Marirana Hatoyama initially worked as an economist during the 1960's and early 1970's. He was employed as an economic adviser for the government of Vincenzo Rustichelli but resigned in 1980, thereafter supporting opposition movements to the Rustichelli government. In 1994 Hatoyama became the founder of the right-wing Pole of Good Government and in 1995 became the Governor of Ritaldi where he instituted several economic reforms and law-and-order policies making the province the richest by GDP per capita within the federation. In 2002 he resigned from the Governorship to run in the 2003 presidential election. Considered a dark horse candidate Hatoyama won the presidency against the more well known Prime Minister Alessandra Michelozzi before forming a grand coalition of his own Convergence for Freedom and the Coalition for Democratic Action.

Upon his election as president Marirana had one of the highest murder rates on the planet with an average 58 people per 100,000 inhabitants being murdered every year. Hatoyama's presidency focused on combating organised crime and reducing drug trafficking with the continuation of the "war on drugs" that had begun under prior presidents. Under Hatoyama the murder rate was halved to an average 26 murders per 100,000 inhabitants by 2005 albeit drug trafficking and sexual violence remained a serious problem. The Hatoyama government continued the neoliberal policies of its predecessors, privatising several state-owned enterprises. However under Hatoyama deficit spending to boost literacy rates and reduce extreme poverty was implemented. In foreign affairs the Hatoyama government continued cordial relations with the Federation of Asteria.

In 2006 it emerged that Hatoyama's government had privatised several corporations - notably Mariranan Water - to businesses, most notably the Monzese corporation - that had backed Hatoyama during the 2003 presidential campaign, continuing such behaviour whilst in office. This led to the House of Councillors and the House of Senators to vote to impeach Hatoyama in July 2006. The Constitutional Court upheld Parliament's decision leading to Hatoyama to be removed from the presidency in November 2006. Hatoyama subsequently was put on trial and sentenced to two years in prison for corruption in 2008 as well as being barred from holding public office for 8 years. In 2010 the former Convergence for Freedom electoral coalition merged together to form the United National Party, which Hatoyama was elected the leader of.

In 2016 the ban on Hatoyama holding public office was lifted. Hatoyama subsequently announced he would run for president again in the 2017-18 presidential election as the PNU's candidate. Despite advancing to the second round with 5,007,759 (18.2%) votes he was unable to beat left-wing candidate Lorenzo Occhetto getting 11,055,322 (40.7%) votes to Occhetto's 16,107,631 (59.3%).

Hatoyama has been identified as a right-wing populist, supporting crackdowns on drug cartels and leftist insurgents. Hatoyama has been criticised for several misogynistic, homophobic and perceived authoritarian tendencies. Hatoyama is the only Mariranan president to have been successfully impeached.

Early life

Private sector career

Political career

Presidential campaign

On the 17th July 2002 Hatoyama resigned from the Governorship of Ritaldi to announce his candidacy for the Presidency. Hatoyama stated he was launching his candidacy on the grounds Marirana needed "strong leadership in difficult times" condemning the current leadership of the nation as "lacking the ideas needed to reinvigorate Marirana". Hatoyama's announcement of his candidacy was considered a surprise, due to the fact that he was considered a largely unknown figure to the electorate outside of his home state of Ritaldi. Hatoyama soon formed an electoral coalition Convergence for Freedom which consisted of his own Pole of Good Government party, the Party of National Reconstruction and the evangelical Family First Party. The Convergence for Freedom 17 member Federal Executive unanimously endorsed Hatoyama as their candidate for president in August 2002.

Hatoyama faced strong obstacles to his candidacy. His ethnicity was considered a handicap as many believed a man of Senrian descent would be "unelectable". As well as this the majority of mainstream media outlets at first backed Prime Minister Alessandra Michelozzi, the favoured candidate of then-president Giordano Falcomatà and wife of former president Oliviero Michelozzi, for the presidency as did the two largest political parties, the Anti-Revolutionary Party and the Democratic Alternative. Finally left-wing candidate Renzo Acquaviva of the Democratic Left Alliance led in the polls in front of Hatoyama.

However over the course of the campaign several factors resulted in Hatoyama to attain more popularity. Michelozzi and Acquaviva both based their campaign on improving the Mariranan economy whilst Hatoyama gave the majority of his focus on his tough-on-crime and anti-drug policies - following rising crime statistics and gang violence in the summer of 2002 Hatoyama rose in the polls. Hatoyama also benefited from accusations made against President Falcomatà of a marital affair, which tarnished the CPLD's reputation as promoting socially conservative policies. Finally, Hatoyama saw his campaign supported by business groups such as Monzese.

In the general election Hatoyama campaigned on a largely populist platform, calling for more investment in social services and a tougher approach to law and order, promising to "wipe out cartels". Hatoyama condemned left-wing candidates for "wasting time in peace talks" with insurgent groups instead proposing military solutions to win the insurgency. The first presidential debate saw support rise for Hatoyama after he was perceived to have beaten his both Vernizzi and Acquaviva.

The first round of the presidential election saw Hatoyama get 42.7% of the vote, qualifying him for the second round where he faced off Michelozzi who got 35.4% of the vote. In the second round Hatoyama easily beat Michelozzi with Hatoyama getting 57.3% to Michelozzi's 40.5%. Hatoyama became the 42nd Mariranan president and the second not to be white. Hatoyama's victory of the election was seen as a "political earthquake" at the time.

Presidency

Hatoyama following his election as President

Following Hatoyama's ascent to the presidency Hatoyama sought to create a centre-right government led by the Convergence for Freedom coalition, tapping independent Eduardo Profumo, a prominent right-wing politician, as Prime Minister. In the 2003 parliamentary election the Convergence for Freedom coalition failed to get a majority, leading to Hatoyama to form a grand coalition of his Convergence for Freedom coalition and the Coalition for Democratic Action. CPLD leader Roberto Vernizzi was appointed speaker of parliament whilst Hatoyama largely re-appointed the same cabinet ministers that had served in the previous administrations cabinet.

Over the course of 2004 however tensions developed between Hatoyama and Vernizzi, resulting in Hatoyama firing a large amount of ministers and appointing his own loyalists in their place. This led to criticism within the government and a strained relationship with the Parliamentary Assembly. This rivalry further intensified after the Parliamentary Assembly failed to endorse Hatoyama's candidate Dino Mazzucco to chair the Constitutional Court, instead confirming Sergio De Maria.

Security policy

Hatoyama had based his campaign promises around crime reduction, in particular calling for a war on drugs. Upon coming to office, Hatoyama signed an executive decree creating the Anti-Drug Trafficking Unit, a sub-branch of the national police force based on anti-drug trafficking and anti-cartel operations. Hatoyama also signed an executive decree replacing the National Police Force with military forces to intervene in anti-drug trafficking operations in 146 counties. Hatoyama also authorised the Inter-Provincial Security Agency to conduct extrajudicial actions - including summary execution - against drug traffickers. In 2004 Hatoyama announced the construction of over 50 new federal prisons to accommodate a rising prison population.

Hatoyama's hardline tactics to drug trafficking - in particular the approval of extrajudicial murders against drug traffickers despite capital punishment being banned in Marirana - resulted in concerns by human rights groups in Hatoyama's anti-drug policies. However Hatoyama recorded positive support for such policies with his approval rating reaching 77% in August 2005, with 82% of respondents approving of Hatoyama's drug and security policy.

The escalation of anti-drug trafficking operations led to in 2004 Marirana to have the highest murder rate in its recorded history at 60 people per 100,000 inhabitants being murdered. However, the operations saw some success with 17 of Marirana's most wanted 30 drug barons being captured or killed by 2006 whilst over 5,771 drug dealers had been apprehended by state authorities. As well as this, 3,881 drugs camps, 287,280 marijuana farms and 168,963 cocaine production sites had been destroyed. The murder rate had also halved by the end of Hatoyama's presidency to 26 murders per 100,000 inhabitants.

Despite the Hatoyama's presidency success in reducing gang and cartel violence in the country, Marirana still suffered from several problems most prominently having high levels of sexual violence. The pressure group Association against Sexual Violence criticised the Hatoyama government for not doing enough to prevent rape and domestic abuse.

Economic policy

Hatoyama's government continued the neoliberal economic model inherited from his predecessor. The previous government had left Marirana with a healthy economy with a budget surplus, consistent if sluggish growth and a stable inflation rate of 3%. Upon coming to office Hatoyama stated that the main economic aims of his government would be trade liberalisation, regional integration, poverty reduction and economic development.

In August 2004 Hatoyama signed a reform to Marirana's trade laws that removed tariffs on several industrial and agricultural goods. Hatoyama claimed this reform would enable Marirana to boost its integration with the world economy and lead to economic growth. The year after Hatoyama approved of the privatisation of several state-owned enterprises, most notably Mariranan Waterworks with water services being contracted to a private company, Monzese corporation. The privatisation of Mariranan Waterworks was notably contentious with protests being held shortly after the announcement of the fact.

Hatoyama had argued in his presidential campaign that Marirana's budget surplus should be used to invest in education and poverty reduction policies. Under Hatoyama, Marirana saw significant investment into public services with the government launching a poverty relief fund with citizens in extreme poverty being offered employment in public work programmes and financial relief for their families. Hatoyama's investment in education meant that the literacy rate increased from 82.8% in 2002 to 92.6% in 2007. Hatoyama use of Marirana's budget surplus however led to Marirana to enter a budget deficit in 2005 going from a 1.4% surplus in 2002 to a -3.0% in 2007.

Social policy

In 2005 the Parliamentary Assembly passed a law legalising same-sex activity - however the law was vetoed by President Hatoyama on the grounds he "could not endorse such social deviancy". The law would remain in limbo until 2010 when it was signed into law by President Amintore Salvadori.

Foreign policy

File:Hatoyama Gaullica.png
Hatoyama meeting Gaullican president Alexandre Lévesque in 2004

Impeachment

Throughout Hatoyama's presidency he was accused of taking bribes from several Mariranan companies, notably water, electricity and natural gas supplier Monzese, media group TeleX and oil and gas supplier Petrocorp in return for favourable tax breaks and government contracts. Hatoyama had consistently denied that he had taken bribes calling accusations "baseless". The majority of accusations centred around lucrative government contracts being dis-proportionally given to those companies amongst others, notably after the government privatised Mariranan Waterworks (contracting out water services to Monzese) and the former state-owned biofuel producer to Petrocorp.

On the 10th August 2006 the Bureau for the Investigation of Corrupt Activities put forward sufficient evidence that the Hatoyama government had set up a criminal network in which companies would pay bribes to the government in return for the government would award them lucrative contracts and tax breaks, learning of the network through several wiretaps and financial statements. Initially the BICA identified Prime Minister Profumo as the main organiser of the network, leading to Profumo to resign on the 17th August 2006 resulting in Hatoyama to appoint Vernizzi Prime Minister. However, investigations quickly implicated Hatoyama as well after in emerged Hatoyama had been the beneficiary of bribes from Monzese in his 2003 presidential bid in return for Hatoyama privatising Mariranan Waterworks and selling its assets to Monzese.

As a result of the corruption scandals numerous protests were held against Hatoyama especially in urban centres such as Santa Maria and Aquinas with protesters demanding for Hatoyama's removal from office. Hatoyama's personal approval rating reached 8% in June 2006 with over 84% believing he should be removed from office.

On the 3rd September 2006 the House of Councillors reached the qualified majority to impeach Hatoyama on the charges of bribery and racketeering, with the House of Senators also reaching the majority in a vote held on the 11th September. Hatoyama's duties as president were suspended with the Cabinet assuming the formal duties of the president as the Constitutional Court examined if Hatoyama's presidency was to be terminated. After a three month trial on the 12th November the court voted unanimously to terminate Hatoyama's presidency with Prime Minister Vernizzi appointed an interim president, making Hatoyama the first president in Mariranan history to be impeached.

Post-presidency

Views

Hatoyama's views have been described as right-wing populist and conservative, being placed on the hard right of the Mariranan political spectrum. Whilst governing as a new right conservative, since his impeachment Hatoyama has been accused of reviving political themes from the Castello era with his support of traditionalist conservatism and a more authoritarian political style. Hatoyama has condemned the political class of Marirana as being corrupt and self-serving, and has pointed to his impeachment as the result of the political class ousting "those who threaten their cartel" rather than a result of personal misconduct.

Hatoyama has called for military rule in so-called "ungovernable regions" such as Mederio, Umbertide and Ritaldi stating that such a solution would see a quick end to violence. Generally speaking Hatoyama has ruled out working with rebel groups in Marirana, stating that the destruction of the Ospeletto Cartel, 26 May Movement, Democratic Front for the Liberation of Indigenous Peoples and Red Army would be the optimal option to secure peace in Marirana and has as such championed tough security and military solutions to the Mariranan insurgency.

Generally speaking Hatoyama promotes socially conservative views supporting a total ban on abortions, opposing same-sex marriage and supporting the restoration of the death penalty. Hatoyama supports conversion therapy for homosexual and transgender people and has called feminism a "cancer'".

In foreign policy Hatoyama has shifted from being supportive to disparaging towards the Federation of Asteria stating that Asteria had "forced us into submission in 1935". He has stated that he wishes to return the former province of Cittadella from Roeselle to Marirana.

Personal life