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OPINION POLLS

Jiji Press Public Opinion Poll on the Constitution

  • May 11, 2019
  • , Jiji Press Public Opinion Poll Bulletin , [No. 1590] – pp. 4–6
  • JMH Translation

Questions & answers (%)

Figures in parentheses denote the results of the survey conducted on April 2017 (middle column) and the survey conducted on April 2016 (right column).

 

Q: May 3 marks the 70th anniversary of the enforcement of the Constitution of Japan. The three core principles of the Constitution are the sovereignty of the people, basic human rights, and pacifism. Do you think highly of the role played by the Constitution? Select only one response from the below.

 

 

2019

(2017)

(2016)

Yes

40.9

(42.4)

(46.7)

Generally yes

42.5

(42.6)

(37.1)

Generally no

6.0

(6.4)

(6.8)

No

1.7

(2.9)

(3.9)

Don’t know

8.9

(5.6)

(5.4)

Yes (total)

83.4

(85.0)

(83.8)

No (total)

7.7

(9.4)

(10.7)

 

Q: Do you think the Constitution should be amended?

 

 

2019

(2017)

(2016)

Yes

41.9

(43.8)

(42.1)

No

36.8

(37.5)

(41.2)

Don’t know

21.3

(18.8)

(16.7)

 

Q: (Only for those who answered “yes” to the foregoing question) Why do you think the Constitution should be amended?

 

 

2019

(2017)

(2016)

Because the Constitution was imposed on Japan by the United States

16.3

(18.7)

(18.5)

Because the Constitution is no longer appropriate for the times

74.0

(81.6)

(79.2)

Because Japan’s right of self-defense needs to be clearly stated

34.8

(34.2)

(36.7)

Because amendment is necessary for Japan to contribute to the international community

12.9

(9.8)

(15.9)

Other

0.4

(1.3)

(–)

Don’t know

0.6

(0.4)

(0.7)

 

Q: (Only for those who answered “no” to the foregoing question) Why do you think the Constitution should not be amended?

 

 

2019

(2017)

(2016)

Because the Constitution has taken root among the people

33.7

(41.4)

(31.0)

Because there are no problems with the Constitution that require amendment

30.9

(26.3)

(24.3)

Because pacifism puts a check on Japan’s becoming a military superpower

46.6

(49.7)

(52.9)

Because it protects basic human rights and democracy

28.9

(33.8)

(37.7)

Other

1.5

(0.8)

(0.8)

Don’t know

2.2

(1.5)

(1.3)

 

Q: In its 2012 draft constitutional amendments, the Liberal Democratic Party included the creation of state-of-emergency provisions. In March this year, the Lower House’s Commission of the Constitution discussed extending the terms of Diet members in the event of a large-scale disaster. Are you in favor of or opposed to the creation of state-of-emergency provisions? Select only one response from the below.

 

 

2019

(2017)

(2016)

In favor

23.6

(24.3)

(20.0)

Generally in favor

35.9

(37.5)

(38.6)

Generally opposed

12.6

(13.4)

(16.4)

Opposed

9.9

(6.8)

(9.9)

Don’t know

18.0

(17.9)

(15.1)

In favor (total)

59.5

(61.8)

(58.5)

Opposed (total)

22.5

(20.3)

(26.3)

 

Q: Article 9 renounces war and prohibits Japan from maintaining war potential. Do you think Article 9 should be amended?

 

 

2019

(2017)

(2016)

Yes

30.0

(29.3)

(29.4)

No

56.0

(58.2)

(57.9)

Don’t know

14.1

(12.6)

(12.7)

 

Q: (Only for those who answered “yes” to the foregoing question) Why do you think Article 9 should be amended?

 

 

2019

(2017)

(2016)

Because Japan’s right of self-defense needs to be clearly stated

60.2

(65.2)

(63.5)

Because the existence of the Self-Defense Forces should be clearly stated in the Constitution

41.1

(39.1)

(41.6)

Because Japan should participate in United Nations peacekeeping operations that include the exercise of military force

28.5

(22.0)

(29.8)

Because it has become a hindrance to Japan’s security policy

28.2

(30.4)

(34.0)

Other

0.5

(0.8)

(0.5)

Don’t know

1.9

(1.4)

(1.6)

 

Q: (Only for those who answered “no” to the foregoing question) Why do you think Article 9 should not be amended?

 

 

2019

(2017)

(2016)

Because Article 9 has contributed greatly to postwar peace and stability

66.8

(68.4)

(72.2)

Because it puts a check on Japan’s becoming a military superpower

38.1

(40.5)

(42.8)

Because matters can be handled by changing the interpretation of the Constitution without amending Article 9

24.2

(20.2)

(20.4)

Because it would harm relations with Asian and other countries

11.5

(13.3)

(17.0)

Other

0.7

(0.4)

(0.7)

Don’t know

2.0

(1.1)

(1.5)

 

 

Q: Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has said that revising Article 9 of the Constitution is necessary because many local governments refuse to cooperate in the recruitment of SDF members. Do you think that local governments should cooperate in the recruiting of SDF members by providing to the Ministry of Defense such information as the addresses, names, and ages of the residents in their jurisdiction? Select only one response from the below.

 

 

2019

 

 

Yes

10.1

 

 

Generally yes

20.8

 

 

Generally no

25.7

 

 

No

28.7

 

 

Don’t know

14.7

 

 

Yes (total)

30.8

 

 

No (total)

54.4

 

 

 

Polling methodology (April 2016): The survey was conducted over the four-day period of April 8–11, 2016, through individual interviews. For the survey, a total of 2,000 people were sampled from among men and women, aged 20 and over, across the nation on a stratified two-stage random-sampling basis. Valid responses were received from 1,268 people for a valid response rate of 63.4%. Composition: men, 51.8%; women, 48.2%; age 20–29, 11.2%; 30–39, 16.9%; 40–49, 18.3%; 50–59, 14.6%; 60–69, 17.4%; age 70 and over, 21.7%.

 

Polling methodology (April 2017): The survey was conducted over the four-day period of April 7–10, 2017, through individual interviews. For the survey, a total of 2,000 people were sampled from among men and women, aged 18 and over, across the nation on a stratified two-stage random-sampling basis. Valid responses were received from 1,257 people for a valid response rate of 62.9%. Composition: men, 52.4%; women, 47.6%; age 18–29, 9.8%; 30–39, 15.9%; 40–49, 18.3%; 50–59, 16.2%; 60–69, 19.1%; age 70 and over, 20.7%.

 

Polling methodology (April 2019): The survey was conducted over the four-day period of April 5–8, 2019, through individual interviews. For the survey, a total of 2,000 people were sampled on a stratified two-stage random-sampling basis from among men and women, aged 18 and over across the nation. Valid responses were received from 1,242 people for a valid response rate of 62.1%. Composition: men, 50.2%; women, 49.8%; age 18–29, 10.4%; 30–39, 13.4%; 40–49, 18.6%; 50–59, 17.4%; 60–69, 16.3%; age 70 and over, 24.0%.

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