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Can 'Prince' Koizumi save the LDP?

A rout in the capital election pushes the popular lawmaker to political center stage

Katsuaki Kamiji, right, celebrates his first victory in the Yokosuka mayoral election with LDP lawmaker Shinjiro Koizumi, in Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, on June 25. (Kyodo)

TOKYO -- With Prime Minister Shinzo Abe trying to shore up his ailing administration after a massive defeat in the recent Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly election, Shinjiro Koizumi, the popular 36-year-old Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker, is likely to hold the key.

The popular third-term LDP member's attitude could sway Abe's handling of the government in the run-up to the next lower house election and the 2018 LDP presidential poll.

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