Asahi Shimbun December 2009 Regular Public Opinion Poll (09-32)

Key Issues
  • Support for the Hatoyama Cabine
  • Gasoline tax and child allowance
  • Relocation of Futenma Air Station
  • Meeting between the emperor and the Chinese vice president
  • Hatoyama and the false fund donation statements
Dates Conducted

December 19 and 20, 2009

Date Released

December 22 and 24, 2009


The poll was conducted by telephone on December 19 and 20 with voters from across Japan , whose telephone numbers were selected by a computer at random.  Subjects were selected using a three-stage random sampling method (the Asahi RDD).  The total number of those polled was 3,465, with 2,115 responses and a 61% response rate.  Decimals were rounded up.  The numbers in [ ] are the percentages of those polled as compared to the entire population of those who answered.  The numbers in ( ) are the results from a poll conducted on November 14 and 15, 2009.


Questions and Answers published December 22, 2009

Q1.  Do you support or not support the Hatoyama cabinet?

Support 48% (62)
Do not support 34% (21)


SQ1.  Why?  Please select one from the following four choices: (The results in the left column are from the 48% who answered “support,” and the results in the right column are from the 34% who answered “do not support.”)

Mr. Hatoyama is the Prime Minister 6% [3] 2% [1]
The cabinet is primarily composed of DPJ members 35% [17] 11% [4]
Policies of the cabinet 42% [20] 33% [11]
Executive ability 11% [5] 50% [17]


Q2.  Which political party do you currently support?

Democratic Party of Japan 42% (46)
Liberal Democratic Party 18%(14)
New Komeito 2%(3)
Japan Communist Party 1%(2)
Social Democratic Party 1%(1)
Your Party 1%(0)
The People’s New Party 0%(0)
Reform Club 0%(0)
The New Party of Japan 0%(0)
Other party 0%(0)
Do not support any party 31%(28)
No Answer/Do not know 4%(6)


Q3.  Do you think Prime Minister Hatoyama has or has not been displaying leadership?

Has been displaying leadership 18%
Has not been displaying leadership 74%


Q4.  During the House of Representatives election, the DPJ pledged in their manifesto to abolish the gasoline tax and provide a child allowance.  Following compilation of the budget, the DPJ has revised this and requested that Prime Minister Hatoyama maintain the gasoline tax and establish income restrictions on the child allowance.  Can you accept or not accept this?

Accept 50%
Not accept 43%


Q5.  We will ask you about the Okinawa-based U.S. Futenma Air Station relocation problem.  Prime Minister Hatoyama has decided to postpone the decision to relocate the military airfield to Nago City in Okinawa as planned, based on the agreement with the U.S. government, and examine new relocation options.  Do you approve or not approve of the way the Hatoyama cabinet has handled this problem?

Approve 30%
Not approve 60%


Q6.  We will ask you about the meeting between the emperor and the Chinese vice president.  There is a protocol in place that states “requests by foreign visitors to meet the emperor be filed at least one month in advance” yet, the Hatoyama cabinet allowed the meeting to take place despite the short notice.  Do you think the decision made by the Hatoyama cabinet was appropriate or not appropriate?

Appropriate 39%
Not appropriate 51%


Q7.  We will ask about Prime Minister Hatoyama and the false fund donation statements.  Do you think this problem is of serious enough importance that it could lead to the prime minister’s resignation?

Serious importance 44%
Not serious importance 50%


Questions and Answers published December 24, 2009

Q8.  As a result of the House of Representatives election, the administration has changed to one that is centered around the DPJ.  Do you think this change in administration was good or not good?

Good 72%
Not good 16%


Q9.  As a whole, in regards to an administration centered around the DPJ, are your expectations or anxieties larger?

Expectations are larger 44%
Anxieties are larger 45%


Q10.  It has been approximately three months since the Hatoyama cabinet was inaugurated.  How would you evaluate the Hatoyama cabinet’s job performance? (Please choose one from the following.)

Positively evaluate 3%
Somewhat positively evaluate 51%
Not very positively evaluate 37%
Do not positively evaluate 7%


Q11.  The Hatoyama cabinet is comprised of the DPJ, the Social Democratic Party, and the People’s New Party.  Do you think Prime Minister Hatoyama should incorporate the opinions of the Social Democratic Party and the People’s New Party as much as possible or not?  [Numbers in ( ) are results from an emergency poll conducted on September 16 and 17, 2009]

Incorporate as much as possible 43% (61)
Do not incorporate 50% (31)


Efforts of the Hatoyama Cabinet…([Other/No answer] is omitted.)

Economy/Employment Diplomacy/Defense Pension/Medical Care Waste Reduction Reducing bureaucracy
Exceed expectations 1% 1% 1% 11% 8%
As expected 19% 20% 25% 44% 39%
Not as expected 48% 43% 41% 25% 29%
Had no expectations to being with 27% 29% 25% 15% 19%


The Mansfield Foundation is responsible for the translation of this Asahi Shimbun poll, subject to the Mansfield Foundation terms of use (see below).

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