The high-profile scandal involving nationalist Osaka-based school operator Moritomo Gakuen has once again brought to the fore the ability of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is linked to the affair, to maintain high public approval ratings.

Over the past month, the Abe administration has been rocked by media reports over the close relationship between first lady Akie Abe and the shady land deal involving the school operator, which has been severely lashed for its Shinto-based ultranationalistic education.

Newspapers and gossip TV shows have repeatedly run bizarre stories about Moritomo Gakuen over the past month that many believe should have dealt a harsh blow to Abe's government, which has seemed invincible since its inauguration in December 2012.