The 2005 Lower House election was a bitter experience for candidates on the Democratic Party of Japan's ticket who ran in Tokyo's 25 single-seat constituencies.

Then-Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi pitched his postal privatization initiative and the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, minus its postal reform foes, won by a landslide. Only Naoto Kan, now a DPJ deputy chief, won a seat in Tokyo.

The situation looks quite different this time round, however. The DPJ won a majority in the Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly poll last month and Prime Minister Taro Aso's public support rating continues to sag.