Subscribe to Breaking News emails

You have successfully subscribed to the Breaking News email.

Subscribe today to be the first to to know about breaking news and special reports.

Japan's Paternity-Leave Poster Boy Kensuke Miyazaki Admits Cheating on Pregnant Wife

by Arata Yamamoto /  / Updated 

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.

TOKYO, Japan — A lawmaker who made headlines in Japan as the poster boy for paternity leave quit on Friday after admitting to a tryst with a kimono fitter days before his wife gave birth.

Kensuke Miyazaki resigned from Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party during a live televised news conference.

He also apologized for the affair to supporters and to his wife — a lawmaker from the same party.

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.

“I plan to repent for the rest of my life” Miyazaki told reporters. "I know my careless acts are inconsistent with the ideals I was advocating. For that I am deeply, deeply, deeply sorry, and resign as a member of parliament for this.”

The junior lawmaker said he had met up with the model and garment-fitter in question at least three times — including days before his wife gave birth to their first child, a son.

Miyazaki, 35, last year became the first member of the socially-conservative country’s parliament to apply for paternity leave.

Kensuke Miyazaki bows Friday during a news conference about his affair.Kazunari Fujikake / AP

His dalliance was first reported by the weekly magazine, Shukan Bunshun. Abe said Wednesday he hadn’t seen the magazine's report but added that lawmakers “must hold themselves to a much higher standard.”

Akira Amari, a key member Abe’s government and the architect of his economic policies, quit last month after a member of his team accepted a US$140,000 bribe from a construction company.

While Abe enjoys fairly strong public approval, hovering at 51 percent according to the most recent poll by Mainichi Shinbum, such scandals may eventually harm his party as it heads for upper house elections scheduled to take place later this summer.

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.
MORE FROM news

Have feedback?

How likely are you to recommend nbcnews.com to a friend or colleague?

0 = Very unlikely
10 = Very likely
Please select answer

Is your feedback about:

Please select answer

Thank you!

Your feedback has been sent out. Please enjoy more of our content.

We appreciate your help making nbcnews.com a better place.