Calling the debate "hasty," the Liberal Democratic Party's members in Gifu Prefecture are asking the heads of municipal assemblies to call for a "careful discussion" of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's bid to legalize Japan's use of collective self-defense by reinterpreting the Constitution instead of amending it, sources said Sunday.

Senior members in the Gifu chapter, long an LDP stronghold, sent a letter last Tuesday to the chiefs of its 42 city, town and village assemblies asking them to adopt a statement seeking careful deliberation of the controversial matter.

The chapter's members are worried that the debate being rushed by the Abe administration — despite its earlier assertions that it was willing to hold further talks into the summer if the Diet closes before an agreement can be reached — could negatively affect local elections due to be held nationwide next spring, the sources said.