Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso raised eyebrows Sunday by suggesting that the Liberal Democratic Party is popular with young voters because they are less inclined to read newspapers than older Japanese.

The outspoken 77-year-old boasted that the LDP enjoyed strong support in last year's general election from voters under 35, saying "this is the generation that reads newspapers the least."

"Everyone that doesn't read them is pro-LDP," Aso said in a speech in Shibata, Niigata Prefecture. "Sorry to newspaper sellers, but this has made clear to me that we really shouldn't help newspapers."