As MTC notes, “Provided that the Asō Cabinet is still existence then, I would have to add.”
I would add that with Nakagawa Shoichi’s self-destruction, the power of the LDP’s ideological conservatives appears to be in freefall.
Consider the HANA club, the group of ideological conservatives named for Hiranuma Takeo, Abe Shinzo, Nakagawa Shoichi, and Aso Taro that formed in the early days of the Fukuda government to rally the LDP’s conservatives after the premature departure of Mr. Abe from the Kantei. Aso Taro is venturing into the Mori Yoshiro range of public support and increasingly looks to be the gravedigger for the LDP as we know it. Abe Shinzo is taking baby steps back into public life and has lost some of his ideological bravado in the process. Mr. Hiranuma continues to tilt at the windmill of a conservative party that could serve as a third major party (mentioned in this post). And now Mr. Nakagawa, who I once thought might be next in line to lead the conservatives, appears to have been consumed by his demons and will likely end up as a footnote when the post-Koizumi history of the LDP is written. Beyond those four are an assortment of second-tier figures, including a couple in the Aso cabinet, none of whom look capable of competing for the leadership of a broken LDP.
After nearly fifteen years of ascendance, it appears that the conservatives might once again be anti-mainstream, frustrated in their efforts to achieve remilitarization, constitution revision, and national greatness (as they see it) — with the difference being that they will have footholds in both major parties, while lacking the numbers to be a force in their own right. To a certain extent this was already the case, but Mr. Nakagawa’s fall makes it all the more clear.