Naoto Kan, leader of the Democratic Party of Japan, on Oct. 22 called on the two non-Cabinet allies of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party to break ranks and join an opposition electoral plan.Kan said he will consider cooperating with the two parties in the House of Councilors election next summer, meaning the parties would coordinate candidacies to effectively work as one large party against LDP candidates. He told a regular press conference that he wants to talk about possible cooperation with the Social Democratic Party and New Party Sakigake.According to Kan, SDP General Secretary Shigeru Ito “seems to share the same view that it is not good for democracy if the LDP gains a simple majority (in the Upper House).” The LDP recently regained a simple majority in the Lower House for the first time in four years.Kan predicted that the two parties are likely to end the ruling alliance before the election. “In any case, we can start informal discussions with them (to prepare for that move),” he said.Ito later told reporters that LDP Secretary General Koichi Kato is anxious about the SDP’s intentions. On Oct. 19, Ito said the SDP should make up its mind around December whether it will remain in the alliance.On Oct. 21, the DPJ and two other opposition parties agreed to consider the possibility of cooperating in the Upper House election.

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