Tokyo, May 17 (Jiji Press)–The approval rate for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s cabinet rose 1.7 percentage points from the previous month to 44.7 pct in May, a Jiji Press opinion poll showed Friday.
The disapproval rate fell 3.2 points to 31.1 pct, according to the poll conducted for four days through Monday.
The higher support rate was apparently backed by the celebratory mood related to the start on May 1 of the country’s new era, Reiwa, which succeeded Heisei, and the enthronement of new Emperor Naruhito on the same day, during an unprecedented 10-day holiday, pundits said.
According to the poll, 10.0 pct of respondents said the 10-day holiday period through May 6 was “very good,” and 34.2 pct said it was “good.”
By contrast, 27.9 pct said it was “not so good,” and 12.0 pct said it was “not good,” while 15.8 pct said that it was neither good nor bad or that they were not sure.
As reasons for supporting the Abe cabinet, 22.2 pct said there is no other suitable person for the prime minister’s post, 11.5 pct cited Abe’s leadership skills and 10.4 pct said they trust him.
Among those disapproving of the cabinet, 16.8 pct said they cannot trust Abe, 12.9 pct said they expect nothing from the cabinet and 10.4 pct said the cabinet’s policies are bad.
The support rate for Abe’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party dropped 0.2 point to 26.5 pct, and that for the major opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan fell 0.6 point to 3.7 pct.
Support stood at 3.8 pct for Komeito, the coalition partner of the LDP, 2.1 pct for the Japanese Communist Party, 1.6 pct for Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Innovation Party) and 0.6 pct for the Democratic Party for the People.
The share of respondents who said they do not support any specific political party came to 59.6 pct, up 1.1 points.
The interview-based survey covered 2,000 people aged 18 or over across Japan. Valid responses were received from 62.8 pct. (JMH translated and added line graph from the Jiji online Japanese-language article.)