October 17, 2023
TOKYO – Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s Cabinet approval rating is 34%, almost unchanged from last month at 35%, according to a Yomiuri Shimbun poll conducted over the weekend.
However, the figure in the poll conducted Oct. 13 to 15 is the lowest for his Cabinet since he became prime minister in October 2021. The disapproval rating was 49%, slightly improved from 50% in the previous poll held Sept. 13 to 14.
Regarding the government’s new economic package to tackle soaring prices and support wage hikes, which is to be finalized by the end of October, only 21% of the respondents said they have expectations for the package and 73% said they do not.
A total of 86% of respondents said they feel their household finances have been heavily or somewhat burdened by high prices. Only 16% said they feel their own wages or the wages of those around them had increased since Kishida took office, while 75% said they do not.
Respondents were divided on how to evaluate the performance of the current Cabinet over the past two years. A total of 44% said they highly or somewhat appreciate it while 53% said they do not appreciate it very much or at all.
The government asked the Tokyo District Court on Friday to issue a dissolution order for the Unification Church, officially known as the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification. A high 84% said they appreciate this and 8% said they do not.
The measure against the religious group received high praise from people regardless of whether they support the Cabinet, with 90% of supporters saying they appreciate the measure and 83% of those who do not support it appreciating it all the same. The higher respondents’ age, the higher they rated the measure, which gained appreciation from 74% of those aged 18-39, 84% of those aged 40-59 and 90% of those aged 60 and over.
Asked when the prime minister should dissolve the House of Representatives and hold a general election, 33% said he should do so after next year and 31% said there is no need to do so until the end of the lower house members’ term in the autumn of 2025. However, 25% said he should do so “by the end of this year.”
Asked which party respondents intend to vote for in the proportional representation segment of the next lower house election, 33% of respondents said they would vote for the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, up from 32% in the September survey. Nippon Ishin (Japan Innovation Party) was chosen by 12%, down from 13%, and the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan was chosen by 7%, with these figures remaining unchanged.
As for which political party respondents support, 30% said the LDP, down from 31%; 7% said Nippon Ishin, up from 6%; and 4% chose the CDPJ, the same as the September poll. The percentage of respondents with no party affiliation was 46%, up from 41%.
The survey was conducted from Friday to Sunday using 790 household landlines and 1,595 mobile phone numbers selected via random digit dialing. Of them, 1,022 people in total — 410 on landlines and 612 on mobile phones — gave valid answers. All respondents were eligible voters aged 18 or older.