Prime Minister from 1921-1922
Tenure as Prime Minster: 212 days.
Born in Tokyo.
Born in Edo (now Tokyo), Takahashi served as a low-ranking bureaucrat in
various government ministries and became an employee of the Bank of Japan
in 1892. He became vice-president of the bank in 1898. For his services
in obtaining foreign loans during and immediately after the Russo-Japanese
War of 1904-05, he was appointed to the House of Peers in 1905.
In 1921, after the assassination of Hara Kei, he became prime minister
and head of the Seiyukai party, but his cabinet fell in 1922. His term
as prime minister lasted less than seven months, mainly because of his
inability to control factions within his own party. When one faction of
the Seiyukai deserted to support a nonparty cabinet ("transcendental”
cabinet), Takahashi joined the second Movement to Protect Constitutional
Government, becoming minister of agriculture and commerce in Kato Takaaki's
coalition cabinet in 1924.
Resigning the Seiyukai presidency in 1925, he served as finance minister in the cabinets of Tanaka Giichi
, Inukai Tsuyoshi
, Saito Makoto
, and Okada Keisuke
. An advocate of sound government finance, supported by the business interests,
he opposed army demands for larger military appropriations and warned against
inflation and overexpansion of the national debt. Despite his successes
in fighting economic depression in the late 1920s and early 1930s, he was
assassinated in the February 26th Incident by army critics of his policies
limiting armaments expansion.
Takahashi Korekiyo, 1854-1936