Cabinet's approval rating hits 51%, with majority backing pressure on North but not constitutional amendment under Abe: survey
Japan Times -- Feb 12
The public approval rating for the Cabinet has inched up to 50.8 percent in the latest survey, with more than half of respondents backing its policy of pressuring North Korea to halt its nuclear weapons and missile development programs.

The approval rating is 1.1 points higher than in the previous poll in January.

The Cabinet’s disapproval rating meanwhile stood at 36.9 percent.

The results of the Kyodo News poll, released Sunday, also show that nearly half of the public opposes Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s proposal to amend the Constitution by inserting an “explicit reference” into war-renouncing Article 9 to legitimize the Self-Defense Forces. Around 40 percent said they support the idea.

The two-day nationwide telephone survey was conducted Saturday and Sunday on 731 randomly selected households with eligible voters and 1,127 mobile phone numbers, drawing responses from 502 and 514 people, respectively. Traditionally, no margin of error is provided.

On North Korea, 53.0 percent favored putting more pressure on Pyongyang to compel it to give up its nuclear and missile development programs, while 40.0 percent favored addressing the issue via dialogue.

The survey was conducted after North Korea sent a high-level delegation to attend the opening ceremony of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in South Korea.

The poll also showed 29.2 percent want Abe to remain prime minister by winning the ruling Liberal Democratic Party’s leadership election in September.

News source: Japan Times
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