August Asahi Shimbun Emergency Opinion Polls (06-6)

Key Issues
  • Support for post-Koizumi prime ministerial candidates
  • Yasukuni Shrine and implications for Japanese diplomacy
Dates Conducted

August 21 and 23, 2006

Date Released

August 23, 2006


The poll was conducted by telephone on August 21 and 22, 2006, of voters from across Japan who were selected by the three-stage random selection method (the “Asahi RDD” method). The number of people who answered all the questions in full is 836; the ratio of answers is 53%.


This emergency poll was conducted in the backdrop of rising controversy following Prime Minister Koizumi’s August 15 visit to Yasukuni Shrine. The visit unleashed another round of criticism from Seoul and Beijing, and several commentators in the United States called on Japan to resolve its wartime legacy.


Q1. Do you support or not support the Koizumi Cabinet?

Support 44% (43)
Not support 40% (40)

Figures in parentheses are results from emergency polls conducted on July 22 and 23, 2006.


Q2. Currently, which political party do you support?

Liberal Democratic Party 39% (36)
Democratic Party ofJapan 14% (16)
Komeito 2% (3)
JapanCommunist Party 2% (2)
Social Democratic Party ofJapan 2% (1)
The People's New Party 0% (0)
The New PartyJapan 0% (0)
The Free (Liberal) Coalition 0% (0)
Do not support any party 34% (35)
No answer, Do not know 7% (7)

Figures in parentheses are results from emergency polls conducted on July 22 and 23, 2006.


Q3. Let us ask you about the presidential election of the Liberal Democratic Party. At the present, it looks like it will be fought among Aso Taro, Abe Shinzo, and Tanigaki Sadakazu. Who do you think is the most appropriate to succeed Prime Minister Koizumi and become the next prime minister? Choose one from the following?

AsoTaro 14%
AbeShinzo 53%
TanigakiSadakazu 10%
Other 14%


Q4. In the upcoming LDP presidential election, do you expect policy debates are likely to happen, or not?

Looks like we can expect policy debate 24%
Cannot really expect debate 60%


Q4. What is the issue that you want to be debated most in the LDP presidential election? Choose one from the following:

Asian diplomacy 15%
Consumption tax 29%
Correction of economic discrepancy 32%
Vitalization of localities 12%
Constitutional revision 7%


Q5. Prime Minister Koizumi paid a visit to Yasukuni Shrine on August 15, the day that commemorates the end of World War II. Do you think it was good that he visited, or do you think he should not have visited?

It was good that he visited 49%
Should not have visited 37%


Q5a. Do you think the next prime minister should visit Yasukuni Shrine, or do you think he should not?

He should visit 31% (20)
Should not visit 47% (60)

Figures in parentheses are results from emergency polls conducted on July 22 and 23, 2006.


Q5b. Mr. Aso has proposed to convert Yasukuni Shrine into a national facility, and has indicated that he would not visit the Shrine until that is achieved. Do you support this attitude or not?

Support 50%
Do not support 31%


Q5c. Mr. Abe has said that he would not make it clear whether he would visit Yasukuni Shrine or not. Do you evaluate this attitude positively, or not?

Support 32%
Do not support 54%


Q5d. Mr. Tanigaki has indicated that he would hope that Yasukuni Shrine would stop enshrining Class A War Criminal who led the war, and would refrain from visiting the Shrine for the time being. Do you support this attitude or not?

Support 49%
Do not support 36%


Q6. Do you think that the Yasukuni Shrine issue needs to be debated in the LDP presidential election, or do you not think so?

Need to be debated 45%
Do not need to be debated 49%


Q7. If the next prime minister visits Yasukuni Shrine, do you think it will negatively affect Japan’s Asian diplomacy, or do you not think so?

Will negatively affect it 64%
Do not think so 24%


Q8. At Yasukuni Shrine, Class A War Criminals are enshrined along with other war dead. Do you feel uncomfortable about it, or not?

Feel uncomfortable 41%
Do not feel uncomfortable 47%


Q9. Do you think it is better to have the LDP-led government continue, or do you think there needs to be a change in the government into a DPJ-led one?

LDP-led government 38%
DPJ-led government 29%


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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