Japanese Voters Elect Two Politicians in Wheelchairs

August 1, 2019

(The Economist) – Mr Funago, a member of the opposition group Reiwa Shinsengumi, is one of two wheelchair-bound lawmakers to win seats in the upper house in elections on July 21st, along with Eiko Kimura, who is paralysed from the neck down. Disabled people are 7.4% of Japan’s population, but Mr Funago and Ms Kimura will be the only two of the Diet’s 713 members in wheelchairs. Only a handful of disabled people have ever won seats. (The 535 members of America’s current Congress, by contrast, include at least four people who have lost arms, legs or an eye, among other disabilities.)