NHK reported that Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga is considering running in the LDP presidential race, saying that he is likely to officially announce his candidacy once the election date is set. The network said the date for the presidential race is expected to be decided on Tuesday, adding that arrangements are being made for holding a scaled-down version of the election sometime between Sept. 13 and 15. When asked whether he intends to run, Suga reportedly said during a regular press conference this morning: “This is a venue for me to explain the positions of the government, so I will refrain from commenting here on the LDP presidential election, including my own intentions.”
TBS reported that Suga has already informed LDP Secretary General Nikai of his intention to run for the LDP presidency. The network said the Nikai faction has decided to support Suga, adding that a group of lawmakers who support him will convene this afternoon to prepare. Meanwhile, lawmakers who support LDP policy chief Kishida will also reportedly hold a meeting this afternoon. The network said while Aso and Kishida are close, Aso and Suga have also long been partners in supporting the Abe administration, adding that the moves of the Aso faction will hold the key to the outcome of the presidential race. The network added that former LDP Secretary General Ishiba is lagging behind in support among Diet members, saying that he is calling for holding a full-scale election.