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Although the Social Democratic Party set an ambitious goal of sharply increasing the number of seats it has in the House of Representatives during a party conference Saturday, the prospects of the party realizing that goal seem dim, owing to various factors.
The party sees the next lower house election as a critical battle that will define its role in Japanese politics at the dawn of the 21st century, but has been unable to come up with any measures to reverse the decline in its influence and support.
In addition, its preparations for the election seem to have stalled.
Party leader Takako Doi expressed an upbeat attitude toward the election at the beginning of the …