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Makoto Koga, secretary general of the Liberal Democratic Party, indicated Friday that the party presidential election to choose a successor to Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori widely expected next month, should only involve Diet members and representatives of the party’s local chapters.

During the day’s news conference, Koga said that while the current 150-day Diet session is open, the party should avoid creating a political vacuum that could result from holding a full-scale party race in which rank-and-file members would be allowed to vote.

Since the term of the next LDP chief will run only through the end of September, a full-scale election should be held in September, Koga added.

Although junior LDP lawmakers and local LDP representatives have called for a full-scale leadership election, top party executives plan to restrict the voters to Diet members and representatives from prefectural chapters. , saying a full-scale race would take too long to prepare.

Senior LDP members are considering whether to increase the number of votes given to each prefectural chapter from one to three in next month’s race to avoid criticism from the local chapters.

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