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Democratic Party aims to block ruling coalition from winning majority in upper house

Democratic Party leader Katsuya Okada said on June 19 that the largest opposition party will aim to block the ruling coalition from winning a majority of seats up for grabs in the upcoming House of Councillors election.

"If the ruling coalition is aiming for a majority of (121) contested seats, we're going to stop that," Okada told reporters.

Since the ruling coalition already has a two-thirds majority in the House of Representatives and a two-thirds majority vote is needed in both houses of the Diet to call for a referendum on constitutional reform, Okada has previously stated that for the July 10 upper house election the Democratic Party will aim to block those in favor of changing Japan's supreme law from securing a two-thirds majority in the upper chamber.

Okada told reporters that he raised the party's target range for votes in the upper house election because "the ruling coalition has stated that it aims for a majority of the contested seats."

At the same time, Okada emphasized that blocking the ruling coalition from winning a majority of seats up for grabs is not the "victory-or-defeat yardstick" for the party. He added that preventing the pro-constitutional amendment camp from securing a two-thirds majority in the upper chamber is the minimum election target.

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