New Japanese Prime Minister Kishida has rocky start in polls

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida speaks during a press conference at the Prime Minister’s official residence in Tokyo, Japan, October 4, 2021. Toru Hanai / Pool via REUTERS

TOKYO, Oct.6 (Reuters) – Japan’s new Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is struggling to find his place among voters just two days after taking office and launching his new government, several polls conducted by local media.

At the bottom of the scale, the daily Asahi rated Kishida’s approval rating at 45% while Mainichi rated it at 49%. The more conservative Yomiuri said 56% supported his government, while the Nikkei had 59%.

In all polls, support for Kishida’s new government was lower than that of the administration of his predecessor Yoshihide Suga when he came to power last year, with the Asahi reporting a difference of 20 percentage points.

“I am aware of the results of the survey, but I also believe there is a significant gap depending on which company conducted the survey,” Kishida told reporters Wednesday morning.

“Either way, I will reflect on my actions based on these results – including the low approval ratings – and continue to work hard for the next election,” he added.

Although Kishida’s ratings are low for a new administration, they are still above the more immediate ratings of Suga, who became deeply unpopular during his tenure as he struggled to contain a fifth wave of exacerbated coronavirus infections. by the Delta variant.

Kishida has said he will dissolve the lower house of parliament on October 14 and that a general election is scheduled for October 31, with handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and economic recovery to become key issues.

For single-member districts, the Mainichi poll indicated that 41% of those polled would vote for the ruling coalition, while 34% would vote for the opposition and 24% were undecided. The Yomiuri estimated support for Kishida’s Liberal Democratic Party at 43 percent, up 7 percentage points from the previous poll.

The Prime Minister unveiled his new cabinet on Monday. Although more than half of the ministerial posts were filled with new faces, the lineup also included allies of former prime ministers Shinzo Abe and Taro Aso, signaling their continued influence. Read more

Report by Sakura Murakami. Editing by Gerry Doyle

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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