Japan’s voters sweep out ruling party

The Japanese Communist Party maintained its nine seats in the Diet after the historic elections Aug. 30 that swept the Liberal Democratic Party from power. For a half a century the LDP has ruled Japan.

German Left Party scores gain in state elections

BERLIN -- After state elections Sunday, all five main parties in Germany tried to stick in a thumb and pull out a plum or two. Some plums were very sweet, with others rather on the sour side, and the TV smiles of some leaders seemed very forced. The big fight will be on September 27th when the entire Bundestag, or national parliament, is chosen. But the elections to three state legislatures and for mayors and city councils in a fourth state were exciting enough.