• Kyodo

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Nearly 90 percent of people aged 18 and 19 polled by Kyodo News online find that political parties have not explained their policies for the Upper House election in an easy-to-understand manner.

The poll was conducted to gauge sentiment among teens who will get to vote for the first time. The voting age was lowered last year from 20 to 18.

Among the 1,550 youths who responded to the internet survey between Thursday and Monday, 88 percent held an unfavorable view of political parties’ efforts to make their policies comprehensible, far surpassing the 12 percent who were satisfied with the information they received.

Around 75 percent have not yet decided which party they will back, while 25 percent said they have either already decided or more or less decided which way they will vote.

Political parties have been trying to engage young voters, such as by distributing youth-focused brochures, but the poll suggests they need to do better.

In the survey, 52 percent expressed support for the Cabinet of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, while 48 percent expressed disapproval.

In the latest Kyodo News telephone survey conducted early this month through random sampling, 49.4 percent said they approve of the Cabinet, against 41.3 percent who did not.

In the teen survey, those who are interested in the Upper House election and those who are not were even at 50 percent each. Fifty-two percent said they intend to cast their ballots against 25 percent who do not, while 23 percent said they were undecided.

Fifty-six percent said they support no party, making up the largest group, followed by 30 percent who chose Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party and 4 percent who selected the major opposition Democratic Party.

Regarding major issues in the election, 66 percent said they think Abe’s decision to postpone the consumption tax hike for the second time will affect social security funding in the future.

With regard to revising the Constitution, 44 percent are in favor of change under Abe’s leadership and 56 percent are opposed.

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