Photo/IllutrationThe Asahi Shimbun

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The Liberal Democratic Party is on track to win a comfortable majority in the Oct. 22 Lower House election while Kibo no To (Hope) continues to lose steam, an Asahi Shimbun survey showed Oct. 12.

Another new party, the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan (CDP), has gained momentum, but its projected strength will unlikely cause significant damage to the ruling LDP in the race for the 465 seats of the Lower House, according to the telephone survey conducted on Oct. 10 and 11.

However, the election results could change drastically depending on the large percentage of undecided voters. More than 40 percent of respondents said they have yet to pick candidates for single-seat constituencies, and nearly 40 percent have not selected a party for the proportional representation portion of the election.

According to the survey, it is unclear if the LDP will add to its pre-election strength of 284 seats. But the survey indicated that the party as of now should easily surpass 200 in single-seat constituencies and could match the 68 seats it secured in the proportional representation portion of the 2014 Lower House election.

The party needs 233 seats to secure a majority.

The LDP is apparently benefiting from the split in the opposition camp into a conservative group consisting of Hope and Nippon Ishin (Japan Innovation Party) and a left-leaning group, including the Japanese Communist Party and the CDP.

The Hope party, led by Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike, has accepted many candidates from the Democratic Party, the main opposition party that fractured before official campaigning began on Oct. 10.

Just after it was formed, Koike’s party appeared to be a serious threat to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his LDP, but it is now facing difficulties even in Koike’s stronghold of Tokyo, according to the survey.

The Hope party is struggling in both single-seat constituencies and the proportional representation portion.

Fifty-seven of the Hope party candidates held Lower House seats before the start of the official campaign, and it will likely improve on that number. But it is competing in the Tokyo bloc of the proportional representation portion against the CDP, which appears to have the upper hand in terms of momentum.

The CDP is also fighting neck-and-neck with the LDP in the Hokkaido bloc and with the Hope party in such blocs as Minami-Kanto and Kinki.

According to the survey, the CDP, established by left-leaning members of the Democratic Party, will likely double its pre-election strength of 15 seats.

The LDP’s junior coalition partner, Komeito, appears to be in a struggle to maintain its pre-election strength of 34 seats. The same goes for the JCP, which held 21 seats before the Lower House was dissolved.

Nippon Ishin, whose pre-election strength was 14 seats, is the second most popular party in the Kinki bloc in and around its home base of Osaka, following the LDP. However, Nippon Ishin has not spread that popularity outside of the Osaka area, according to the survey.

The Asahi Shimbun conducted the telephone survey on 75,190 eligible voters in 144 single-seat constituencies to determine an overall trend for all 289 single-seat constituencies. Of the voters contacted, 42,746, or 57 percent, gave valid responses.

The survey results also took into account information obtained by Asahi Shimbun reporters covering those 144 constituencies.

The Asahi Shimbun plans to conduct a survey covering the remaining 145 single-seat constituencies on Oct. 12 and 13.