• Kyodo News


The support rating for Prime Minister Naoto Kan’s Cabinet dropped to an all-time low 19.9 percent in the latest survey released Saturday, down 12.3 percentage points from the previous poll a month ago.

The last time the approval rate for a Cabinet sank below 20 percent was just before Kan’s predecessor, Yukio Hatoyama, resigned last June. The Cabinet’s support rate then was 19.1 percent.

The poll showed the disapproval rating for the Cabinet surging to 63.4 percent from 53.9 percent, primarily due to a perceived lack of leadership on the part of Kan.

The telephone survey covered 1,445 randomly selected households with eligible voters. Valid responses were received from 1,013 individuals.

On other issues, the poll found that 52.8 percent of respondents want DPJ kingpin Ichiro Ozawa to resign as a Diet member following his indictment over a political funding scandal, down from 58.7 percent in the previous survey.

The poll also showed that 24.4 percent are in favor of Ozawa’s departure from the ruling Democratic Party of Japan, which he once headed, compared with 22.4 percent previously.

As for Kan’s call for bipartisan talks on tax and social security reforms, 79.8 percent said opposition parties should agree to start negotiations, while only 13.3 percent said they do not need to.

The survey also found that the support rate for the DPJ stood at 20.9 percent, down from 22.7 percent in last month’s poll.

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