As Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s approval ratings remain sluggish — hovering below 30% in the latest polls — Japanese media outlets are beginning to throw out names for a potential race to succeed him.

Late last year, major dailies such as the Asahi Shimbun and Sankei Shimbun began conducting opinion polls, asking the public who they favor as Kishida's successor.

Less than 2% of those polled chose potential candidates Toshimitsu Motegi, the party's secretary-general, or Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi — an indication that lawmakers from the LDP's main wing are struggling to win over the public.