Asahi Shimbun July 2008 Opinion Poll (08-13)

Key Issues
  • Support for the Fukuda Cabinet
  • G8 Summit and global warming
  • North Korea’s declaration of its nuclear program
  • Consumption tax
  • Democratic Party of Japan President Ozawa
Dates Conducted

July 12 and 13, 2008

Date Released

July 15, 2008 (Morning Edition of the Asahi Shimbun)


The poll was conducted by telephone on July 12 and 13 with voters throughout 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 1,975, with a 57% response rate. The numbers represent percentages. Decimals were rounded up. Portions of some answers have been abbreviated. 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 June 14 and 15, 2008.


Q1. The first question is about contemporary politics. Do you support the Fukuda Cabinet, or not?

Support 24% (23)
Do not support 58% (59)


SQ1. Why? Please select one of the following options: (The results in the left column are the reasons given by the 24% who answered “support,” and the results in the right column are the reasons given by the 58% who answered “do not support.”)

Mr. Fukuda is the prime minister 15% [4] 5% [3]
The cabinet is composed primarily of LDP members 31% [7] 21% [12]
Policies of the cabinet 24% [6] 61% [36]
No particular reason 26% [6] 11% [6]

Q2. Which political party do you currently support?

Liberal Democratic Party 26% (22)
Democratic Party of Japan 24% (22)
Komeito 2% (4)
Japan Communist Party 2% (2)
Social Democratic Party 1% (1)
The People’s New Party 0% (0)
The New Party of Japan 0% (0)
Other 0% (0)
Do not support any party 40% (41)

Q3. The next question is about this year’s G8 Summit, held in Toyako, Hokkaido. At the summit, the G8 countries agreed to call for a 50% reduction of emissions of gases like carbon dioxide that cause climate change by the year 2050. In a follow-on meeting that included China, India and other countries, there was agreement on the need to establish a goal, but no reduction targets were set. Do you positively evaluate this result, or not?

Positively evaluate 32%
Do not positively evaluate 53%

Q4. China, India and other emerging economies, responding to calls for commitments to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, assert that, “the leading industrialized countries should establish goals to significantly reduce their own emissions first.” Do you find the emerging economies’ position convincing, or not?

Convincing 37%
Not convincing 50%

Q5. Prime Minister Fukuda acted as chairman of this year’s G8 Summit. Do you think that the prime minister provided leadership as chairman of the summit, or not?

Provided leadership 24%
Did not provide leadership 60%

Q6. The next questions are about North Korea. In response to demands from countries involved in the issue, North Korea declared part of its ongoing nuclear-development program. Do you positively evaluate North Korea’s response, or not?

Positively evaluate 16%
Do not positively evaluate 76%

Q7. Following North Korea’s declaration of its nuclear program, the United States began preparations to remove North Korea from its list of state sponsors of terror. Do you positively evaluate this step by the United States, or not?

Positively evaluate 17%
Do not positively evaluate 71%

Q8. Do you think that removing North Korea from the list of state sponsors of terror will have a positive, negative or negligible effect on solving the issue of Japanese citizens abducted by North Korea ?

Positive effect 4%
Negative effect 51%
Negligible effect 30%

Q9. The following questions are about the consumption tax. Much of the discussion about tax reform has centered on a hike in the consumption tax. Do you think that raising the consumption tax is necessary, or not? (Figures in parentheses are the results of a survey conducted in November 2007.)

Necessary 44% (43)
Not necessary 47% (49)


Q10. Prime Minister Fukuda has declared that, “at this important juncture, a decision must be made” on raising the consumption tax. Thereafter, he explained that by “this juncture” he meant that he had a “long-term, such as 2- or 3-year” period of time in mind. Do you positively evaluate the prime minister’s stance on the consumption tax, or not?

Positively evaluate 24%
Do not positively evaluate 65%

Q11. The next question is about the head of the Democratic Party of Japan, President Ozawa. To what extent do you positively evaluate Mr. Ozawa’s statements and behavior as head of the DPJ? Please select one of the following options:

Very positively 1%
Somewhat positively 35%
Not very positively 45%
Not at all positively 16%

Q12. Comparing Prime Minister Fukuda and Mr. Ozawa, which do you think is more suited to be prime minister?

Mr. Fukuda 37%
Mr. Ozawa 28%


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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