Campaigning for the Upper House election kicks off Wednesday, with the vote on July 10 being the first real chance for the electorate to give a verdict on the administration of Prime Minister Fumio Kishida. But with the opposition expected to offer little in the way of a contest, even a precipitous rise in consumer prices is unlikely to prevent a resounding victory for the ruling Liberal Democratic Party.

However, wider economic issues including the current weakening of the yen are casting a long shadow over the nation’s politics and could spell trouble for the prime minister further down the road — even if the Cabinet proves successful in focusing the public’s pre-election attention on issues related to security and public health.

The LDP manifesto, released Thursday, doubles down on the party’s call for constitutional changes aimed at both increasing the nation’s defense capabilities and modifying its capacity to respond to disasters and the outbreak of infectious diseases.