Cabinet polling at new record low of 26%


Public support for Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda’s Cabinet has tumbled to a record low of 26.4 percent, compared with 31.6 percent last month, a Kyodo News poll said Sunday.

The weekend poll also said that over 60 percent of the public believes Noda should replace the land and defense ministers, following the passage of nonbinding censure motions against them by the Upper House earlier this month.

The poll said 59.5 percent are opposed to restarting the Oi nuclear power plant in Fukui Prefecture, while 26.7 percent support it.

The results indicate Noda is in for even tougher political problems after failing to gain support for his plan to double consumption tax and reactivate nuclear power plants across the country. Virtually all nuclear plants have been halted for checkups in light of the Fukushima nuclear disaster in March last year.

The poll also said that 77.1 percent want Democratic Party of Japan heavyweight Ichiro Ozawa to testify about the management of his political funds in the Diet, although a court recently acquitted him over the scandal.

The former DPJ president heads the party’s largest faction and is opposed to Noda’s goal of doubling the sales tax rate.

On Friday, the Tokyo District Court found Ozawa not guilty of the alleged funds report conspiracy involving his fundraising body. With his acquittal in hand, Ozawa is expected to try to stage a political comeback by wooing lawmakers opposed to the unpopular tax hike plan.