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The ruling Liberal Democratic Party could very well be in for a bitter power struggle among three of its principal intraparty factions following the general election expected by September. The outcome of that struggle could also be a harbinger of a broader political reorganization involving not only the LDP but also the Democratic Party of Japan, the No. 1 opposition group.

The LDP, which has ruled Japan since 1955 except for a brief interruption, is made up of a number of “factions” or “cliques,” each of which functions like a political party. That’s why the LDP is sometimes referred to as a “coalition of conservative parties.”

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