Some Democratic Party members of the House of Councillors will remain in the party after the upcoming House of Representatives election without joining the Party of Hope to keep the party extant, the Mainichi Shimbun learned. “The DP will not disband,” said House of Councillors DP Caucus Chair Toshio Ogawa during his stump speech in Tokyo on Oct. 11. “We will protect the DP and once again consolidate liberal forces.”
Ogawa aims to join hands with the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan and former DP members of the House of Councillors who run in the election as independents. “Some DP members joined the Party of Hope out of necessity, so I want to make the DP a place to welcome them back,” said Ogawa, calling for former DP members who joined the Party of Hope to return.
At the general meeting of the DP members of both Houses in September, the party adopted a plan for all former Lower House members to join the Party of Hope. In this plan, it was decided that the DP’s Upper House members would remain in the party for a while and eventually join the Party of Hope after the election.
However, because the Party of Hope selectively accepted the DP members by screening them, the original plan became invalid. Ogawa intends to make the DP a place to welcome back former DP members rejected by the Party of Hope.
Some of the DP’s Upper House members, however, seem to want to join the Party of Hope. In addition, as Ogawa’s idea runs counter to DP President’s Maehara’s plan, it could cause confusion.