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POLITICS

44% support Abe cabinet, 38% do not, NHK public opinion poll

  • March 12, 2018
  • , NHK , Online 7:00 p.m.
  • JMH Translation

According to the NHK public opinion survey [for the month of March], some 44% of pollees support the Abe cabinet, down 2 percentage points from the poll conducted the previous month. Those saying they do not support the cabinet rose 4 points from the previous month to reach 38%.

 

The [nationwide] survey was conducted by NHK from March 9 over three days on a computer-aided random digit dialing (RDD) basis and targeted men and women aged 18 or over with calls placed to landline and mobile phone numbers. Valid responses were received from a total of 1,208 persons out of the 2,100 people polled. The valid response rate was 58%.

 

When asked why they support the Abe cabinet, 52% of respondents said “because it seems better than other cabinets” while 16% said “because it takes action” and 13% said “because the cabinet is led by the political party I support.” Asked why they do not support the cabinet, 40% said “because the prime minister is untrustworthy,” 33% said “because nothing can be expected of its policy measures,” and 8% said “because other cabinets seem better.”  

 

Regarding allegations that Finance Ministry documents related to the sale of state-owned land to school operator Moritomo Gakuen were altered, the Finance Ministry said last week it will submit copies of the sale-related documents to the Diet and continue to investigate if there are any other documents. Asked if they are satisfied with the Finance Ministry’s handling of the matter, 2% of respondents said they are “very satisfied” and 14% said they are “somewhat satisfied” while 29% said they are “not very satisfied” and 45% said they are “not satisfied at all.”

 

National Tax Agency Commissioner Nobuhisa Sagawa has resigned. Sagawa was director-general of the Finance Ministry’s Financial Bureau [at the time of the sale of state-owned land to Moritomo Gakuen] and responded to Diet interpellations regarding the land sale. Asked what they think about the resignation, 42% said “it is a matter of course,” 17% said “it was not necessary,” and 30% said they “can’t say either way.”

 

Workers’ Party of Korea Chairman Kim Jong Un has proposed that a summit meeting be held with U.S. President Donald Trump, and the American President has indicated he intends to agree to a meeting, which will be held by May. Asked if they support this development, 12% said they “very much support it” and 43% said they “somewhat support it” while 23% said they “do not support it very much” and 13% said they “do not support it at all.”

 

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will visit the United States as early as next month and will consult with President Trump about handling North Korea. Asked if they support this, 20% said they “very much support it” and 48% said they “somewhat support it” while 17% said they “do not support it very much” and 9% said they “do not support it at all.”

 

In his consultations with South Korea, Workers’ Party of Korea Chairman Kim Jong Un indicated the willingness to denuclearize and to exercise self-restraint in conducting nuclear weapons tests and launching ballistic missiles. Asked if they think Kim Jong Un’s statement can be trusted, 3% of respondents said “yes,” 71% said “no,” and 22% said they “can’t say either way.”

 

Regarding the work-style reform bill, Prime Minister Abe has instructed that the expansion of the types of work subject to the discretionary work system to be removed from the bill. Asked what they thought about this, 27% of respondents said “it is a matter of course,” 12% said “it was not necessary,” and 49% said they “can’t say either way.”

 

In the “work-style reform bill,” the government aims to introduce the “highly skilled professionals system,” which exempts certain high-income, highly specialized professionals from work-hour regulations. The opposition parties are calling for the highly skilled professionals system to be removed from the bill. Asked how this matter should be handled, 14% of respondents said “it should be included in the bill,” 29% said “it should be removed from the bill,” and 44% said they “can’t say either way.”

 

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