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PM Suga’s popularity continues to ebb

Monday’s Asahi front-paged the results of its latest public opinion poll that put support for the Suga cabinet at 33%, down 6 points from four weeks ago, and nonsupport at 45%, up 10 points. Almost three out of four respondents said the premier has failed to exercise leadership in reining in the coronavirus resurgence, with 80% saying Suga’s decision to declare a state of emergency in early January came “too late.” The daily speculated that the dwindling approval rating reflected the public’s strong dissatisfaction about Suga’s handling of the pandemic. Only about 21% said they would like to get vaccinated against COVID-19 as soon as possible, while 70% said they would like to “wait and see.” Only one out of ten said the Tokyo Olympics should be held this summer as planned, while slightly over half called for another extension and 35% favored cancellation.

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