The prime minister is chosen from among the Diet members by a resolution of the Diet. If the two houses disagree and no compromise agreement can be reached by a conference committee, or if the House of Councillors fails to make a choice within 10 days (time in recess not included) of the date on which the House of Representatives made its choice, the decision of the House of Representatives is that of the Diet.
(1)Votes of Confidence and Nonconfidence
If the House of Representatives passes a nonconfidence resolution, or rejects a confidence resolution, the Cabinet must resign en bloc, unless the House of Representatives is dissolved within 10 days. When a member wishes to initiate a resolution of confidence or nonconfidence in the Cabinet, a draft of the resolution should be drawn up with the reasons for it attached, signed by at least 50 supporters, and submitted to the speaker.
(2)Questions to the Cabinet
In order to address questions to the government, members of either house must submit them in writing to the speaker or the president for approval. The speaker or the president then transmits to the Cabinet those questions he or she has approved. The Cabinet must answer the question so put within seven days from the date of its receipt. If an answer is not forthcoming within that period, the reason why and the time when a reply can be expected should be given. When a question is of an urgent nature, it may be asked orally in the chamber with the permission of the house.
(3)Investigations Related to Government
Each house may conduct investigations related to government and may demand the presence and testimony of witnesses and the production of records. Such investigations are usually conducted in committee meetings. Both a standing committee and a special committee may investigate matters related to government that fall under their jurisdiction.
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