Abe Cabinet Approval Rate Plummets to 40.6 Pct: Jiji Poll

Politics

Tokyo, Dec. 13 (Jiji Press)--The approval rate for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's cabinet in December tumbled 7.9 percentage points from the previous month to 40.6 pct, a Jiji Press opinion survey showed Friday.

The disapproval rate rose 5.9 points to 35.3 pct, according to the survey conducted for four days through Monday.

The drop in the approval rate is the steepest since the 9.4 point decline in March 2018, when the Abe administration had been grilled by the opposition camp at the Diet, Japan's parliament, over a document-tampering scandal relating to the sale of a state-owned land plot to school operator Moritomo Gakuen.

The latest survey results are also believed to have reflected controversies over a prime minister-hosted annual cherry blossom-viewing party. Abe invited many of his supporters to the parties, and a letter of invitation for the 2015 party was sent to the then chairman of multilevel marketing firm Japan Life Co., which went bankrupt in 2018 after collecting massive amounts of money from customers.

The survey found that 73.3 pct of respondents support the government's decision to cancel next year's cherry blossom-viewing party, while 13.0 pct opposed the move. The proportion of respondents who said the party should be abolished altogether came to 60.2 pct, while 22.6 pct said there is no such need, and 17.2 pct said neither or were unsure.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press