Yasuo Fukuda today has resigned after less than one year in office.
Fukuda announced his resignation at a hastily arranged news conference at his official residence in Tokyo.
Fukuda's administration has seen its popularity slump due to the sluggish economy, the lost pension records scandal and an unpopular healthcare scheme.
Fukuda succeeded Shinzo Abe, who also quit after less than a year following a series of embaressing ministerial scandals.
The hawkish Taro Aso, like Fukuda, another scion of the ruling elite, could be the next in line for the top job.
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Monday, September 01, 2008