Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's ruling coalition secured a majority in Japan's upper house of parliament in elections on Sunday, according to vote counts by public television and other media. Exit polls indicated Abe could even close in on the super-majority needed to propose constitutional revisions.
NHK public television said Abe's Liberal Democratic Party and its junior partner Komeito had won 64 seats in the upper house after two hours of vote counting.
The two-thirds majority needed for constitutional revision could be within reach if the ruling bloc can gain support from members of another conservative party and independents.
Up for grabs were 124 seats in the less powerful of Japan's two parliamentary chambers.
There are 245 seats in the upper house — which does not choose the prime minister — about half of which are elected every three years.