As the drama unfolds in the Liberal Democratic Party presidential election, one group has a particularly heavy stake in the outcomes: Japan’s opposition parties.

While hardly monolithic, the opposition has a reason to coalesce in the coming weeks with the Lower House election forthcoming. They are currently formulating strategies to erode the ruling LDP-Komeito coalition’s supermajority in the Lower House, but that will prove difficult without knowing who their principal opponent will be. Will it be the reform-minded vaccine czar Taro Kono or former internal affairs minister Seiko Noda; the establishment favorite Fumio Kishida; or the right wing’s new champion, Sanae Takaichi?

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