Prime Minister from 1929-1931
Cabinet list Hamaguchi Osachi cabinet
Tenure as Prime Minster: 652 days.
Born in Kochi prefecture

Hamaguchi graduated from Tokyo University in 1895 and then entered the Ministry of Finance. In 1915, he was for the first time elected to the House of Representatives of the National Diet and joined the Rikken Doshikai party of Katsura Taro. He served as finance minister in both cabinets of Kato Takaaki and as home minister in the Wakatsuki Reijiro cabinet. In 1927, he became the president of the Rikken Minseito formed by the merger of the Kenseikai and Seiyu Honto parties.
After the collapse of the cabinet of Tanaka Giichi, Hamaguchi was named prime minister in 1929. In his efforts to strengthen the national economy anf combat inflation, he returned Japan to the gold standard and promoted mechanization and rationalization of industry, but his politics in general remained unpopular. The effects of the world depression deflated the Japanese economy even further than Hamaguchi had intended, and his measures led to social unrest. In 1930 Hamaguchi pushed through ratification of the London naval treaty against resistance from the military. As a result he was accused of having encroached on the emperor's prerogative of supreme command (tosuiken no dokuritsu). He survived an assasination attempt in November 1930, when a right-wing extremist shot him at Tokyo Station, and got back into politics shortly, but he died from the effects of the wounds inflicted at the assasination attempt in August 1931.

Page from Hamaguchi Osachi's diary (nikki) (National Diet Library)

Hamaguchi Osachi (Yuko), 1870-1931