Prominent Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker Seiko Noda struggled Monday to collect enough signatures from fellow party lawmakers in her last-minute bid to run against Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in the party's presidential race.

Party executives heaped pressure on members not to back her in the Sept. 20 vote as the Tuesday morning deadline for filing loomed.

According to informed sources, Noda had garnered the signatures of 17 LDP Diet members as of Monday afternoon.