Political parties and the media widely see the July 12 Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly election as the last and biggest litmus test before a Lower House election that may see the Democratic Party of Japan unseat the ruling bloc.

But the assembly election won’t just be a matter of siding with either the DPJ-led opposition camp or the Liberal Democratic Party-New Komeito ruling bloc, because the stakes are different than at the national level, former Tokyo Vice Gov. Yasushi Aoyama said.

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