August Yomiuri Shimbun Opinion Poll (06-11)

Key Issues
  • LDP presidential election
  • Quality of life
  • U.S. beef import
Dates Conducted

August 5 and 6, 2006

Methodology

Yomiuri conducted the poll in individual interviews on August 5th and 6th using a stratified two-stage random sample of 3,000 voters across the country. 1,741 people, or 58 percent of those selected, responded.

Background

The poll focuses on the September 19th LDP Presidential election that will decide Prime Minister Koizumi’s successor. The poll targets voter interest in the election and highlights potential election issues, such as the continuation of Yasukuni Shrine visits by the next Prime Minister and Japan’s national security in light of North Korea’s July missile tests. The poll also addresses quality of life issues, including the appearance of neighborhoods and the effects of a recent revision to Tokyo’s road traffic law aimed at cracking down on illegal parking violations. Finally, the poll measures public response to the Government’s July reopening of its market to U.S. beef imports.

Survey

Q1 Do you support or not support the Koizumi Cabinet

Support 51.5
Do not support 39.2
Other 2.6
Don't know; No answer 7.1

 

SQ1 If you answered “support” to Question 1, please select up to two reasons why you support the cabinet from the list below.

Positively evaluate its political stance 29
Positively evaluate its policy 14.8
Have a feeling of security 16.8
Can trust the Prime Minister 16.6
Has produced results 39
Because of the LDP-Komeitocoalition 5.7
Better than previous cabinets 37.5
Other 1
Don't know; No answer 0.9

 

SQ2 If you answered “do not support” to Question 1, please select up to two reasons why you do not support the cabinet from the list below.

Negatively evaluate its political stance 39.6
Negatively evaluate its policy 42.5
Do not have a feeling of security 13.2
Cannot trust the Prime Minister 24.2
Has not produced many results 21.4
Because of the LDP-Komeitocoalition 10.9
Worse than previous cabinets 5.9
Other 3.1
Don't know; No answer 1.9

 

Q2 Which political party do you support now? Please select one.

Positively evaluate its political stance 29
Positively evaluate its policy 14.8
Have a feeling of security 16.8
Can trust the Prime Minister 16.6
Has produced results 39
Because of the LDP-Komeitocoalition 5.7
Better than previous cabinets 37.5
Other 1
Don't know; No answer 0.9

 

Q3 Prime Minister Koizumi has announced that he will retire as Prime Minister when his tenure as LDP president expires this September. The LDP Presidential election that will occur in September will essentially decide the next Prime Minister. Do you or do you not have an interest in this LDP Presidential election?

Have a great interest 33.1
Have somewhat of an interest 38.6
Do not have much interest 18.8
Have no interest 8.7
Don't know; No answer 0.7

 

Q4 From the list below, please give the person whom you think most appropriate to be the next Prime Minister.

AsoTaro 7.4
AbeShinzo 45.2
TanigakiSadakazu 9.2
YamazakiTaku 0.9
Other 2
No appropriate person 30.3
Don't know; No answer 5.1

 

SQ If there are reasons for your support of this person, please select all applicable reasons from the list below.

Positively evaluate his political stance 31
Positively evaluate his foreign policy stance 22.2
Positively evaluate his domestic policy 9.7
Has a reformist stance 17.5
Has leadership ability 16.9
Has a sense of balance 18.9
Is youthful 28.5
Feel familiar with 26.4
Other; Don't know; No answer 4.5

 

Q5 If there are topics that you think should be issues in the LDP Presidential election, please select all that apply from the list below.

Environmental/Employment measures 49.3
Fiscal health 25.9
Consumption tax 37
Pension, medical care and other social insurance system reform 56.9
Child care support and other measures to address the falling birth rate 26
Education reform 16.7
Reduction of government employees and other administrative reform 18.8
Income disparity and other inequalities 18.2
Yasukuni Shrine 14.5
Diplomacy withChina,KoreaandAsia 25.4
North Korea 33.1
National defense and security 14.6
Constitutional Revision 9.1
Public safety and crime fighting measures 16.1
Food safety measures 14.5
Other 0.2
No particular issue 3.6
Don't know; No answer 1.3

 

Q6 Former Cabinet Secretary Fukuda Yasuo announced that he will not run as a candidate in the LDP Presidential race. Some suggest that the policy debate will be dull because Fukuda will not run. Do you or do you not think the debate will be so?

Think so 18.6
If anything, think so 18.2
If anything, do not think so 18.1
Do not think so 34.2
Don't know; No answer 11

 

Q7 During the 2001 LDP Presidential election, Prime Minister Koizumi made a public promise that he would visit Yasukuni Shrine and, after taking office, he has visited every year. Do you approve of or oppose his initial promise to visit the Yasukuni Shrine on August 15, the anniversary of the end of World War II?

Approve 22.9
If anything, approve 20.2
If anything, oppose 19.9
Oppose 28.7
Don't know; No answer 8.4

 

Q8 Do you approve of or oppose the next Prime Minister visiting Yasukuni Shrine?

Approve 22.2
If anything, approve 18.2
If anything, oppose 20.2
Oppose 30.1
Don't know; No answer 8.4

 

Q9 Where do you think is an appropriate place for the country to memorialize the war dead? Please give one answer from the following list.

Yasukuni as it is now 35
Yasukuni, removing the Class A criminals who faced war responsibility chargesat the Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal 24.4
A memorial expanding or developingChidorigafuchiCemetery, whichcontains the remains of unidentified war dead. 8.1
A newly constructed, national and non-religious memorial to the war dead 19.2
Other 0.4
Don't know; No answer 12.9

 

Q10 Some people are of the opinion that Class A war criminals should be removed from Yasukuni Shrine. Do you agree with or oppose this opinion?

Agree 39.8
If anything, agree 21.9
If anything, oppose 11.9
Oppose 12.5
Don't know; No answer 13.8

 

Q11 A memo by then head of the Imperial Household Agency was found. It revealed the Showa Emperor's discomfort, at the time, to the enshrinement of Class A war criminals at Yasukuni Shrine, as well as his cessation of subsequent visits. Did this information influence or not influence your thinking regarding the issue of the Prime Minister's visits to Yasukuni Shrine?

Had a great influence 11
Had some influence 26.4
Did not have much influence 28.9
Had no influence at all 26.3
Don't know; No answer 7.4

 

Q12 Based on Japan's proposal, the United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution criticizing North Korea's missile launch and calling for the freezing of missile launches and the halting of all missile-related activities. How do you view the adoption of this resolution?

Highly approve 49.3
Approve somewhat highly 37
Do not approve very highly 6.1
Do not approve highly at all 2.6
Don't know; No answer 4.9

 

Q13 At the Russian hosted G-8 Summit, Members adopted a statement that included calls for North Korea to its freeze missile launches and abandon its nuclear development program. Regarding the recent UN resolution and the G-8 statement, how do you view the role the Japanese government played?

Highly approve 31
Approve somewhat highly 46.2
Do not approve very highly 12.6
Do not approve highly at all 3.8
Don't know; No answer 6.4

 

Q14 The LDP is considering legislation that would restrict certain financial transactions as a new means of sanctions against North Korea. Do think such a new law is necessary?

Think so 55
If anything, think so 24.4
If anything, do not think so 7.6
Do not think so 5.7
Don't know; No answer 7.2

 

Q15 Do you think Japan should cooperate with America to hasten the deployment of a missile defense system that can shoot down enemy missiles?

Think so 38.8
If anything, think so 23.1
If anything, do not think so 15.5
Do not think so 17.6
Don't know; No answer 5.1

 

Q16 Given North Korea's missile launch, there is an opinion that in response to a missile attack against Japan, Japan should possess the capability to attack enemy missile launch sites. Do you think Japan should possess such a capability?

Think so 21.9
If anything, think so 16.8
If anything, do not think so 21.3
Do not think so 33.8
Don't know; No answer 6.3

 

Q17 Do you think there are things that are detrimental to the scenery and streets in the area where you now live? If any, please select all that apply from the list below.

Apartments and other tall buildings 11.7
Large scale stores 4
Billboards and neon signs 11.3
Fliers, posters and other advertisements 18.9
Power lines and poles 13.7
Street signs 2.9
Poorly maintained roads 18.4
Inadequate clean up of trees that line the street 12.1
Residential cinderblock walls 3
Empty stores and abandoned buildings 20.4
Graffiti 15.4
Other 2.4
Nothing in particular 39.9
Don't know; No answer 0.6

 

Q18 As a whole, are you satisfied or dissatisfied with the atmosphere of the area where you currently live?

Extremely satisfied 22.9
Somewhat satisfied 55.1
A little satisfied 17
Extremely dissatisfied 3.5
Don't know; No answer 1.5

 

Q19 Do you think that the atmosphere of the area where you live has recently been getting better or getting worse?

Getting better 14.5
If anything, getting better 40
If anything, getting worse 23.7
Getting worse 6.5
Don't know; No answer 15.3

 

Q20 Do you or do you not have an interest in the maintenance of the atmosphere of the area where you live?

Have a great interest 31.9
Have some interest 45.8
Do not have much interest 15.7
Have no interest at all 4.8
Don't know; No answer 1.8

 

Q21 Do you or do you not think that the local government association where you live is actively working to make your neighborhood better?

Think so 14.4
If anything, think so 25
If anything, do not think so 29.6
Do not think so 23.6
Don't know; No answer 7.5

 

Q22 Do you or do you not think that to improve your neighborhood, regulations on the height and color of buildings should be made stricter?

Think so 28.4
If anything, think so 29.4
If anything, do not think so 19
Do not think so 18.4
Don't know; No answer 4.9

 

Q23 To protect the beauty of neighborhoods, there are some regions where permission from the local government association is necessary to change the color of a house's roof tiles, walls or gate. Do you think that you would be able to accept it if the area where you live had such regulations?

Think so 28.5
If anything, think so 29.9
If anything, do not think so 16.2
Do not think so 20.6
Don't know; No answer 4.8

 

Q24 To improve the atmosphere and scenery of the Nihonbashi area, the Tokyo Government is considering a plan to move the expressway that runs over the bridge to a different location. Do you approve of or oppose this plan?

Approve 23
If anything, approve 22.1
If anything, oppose 18.8
Oppose 16
Don't know; No answer 20.1

 

Q25 Do you or do you not think that the local and central governments should more actively deal with maintaining and preserving neighborhoods and buildings that are said to be historical assets?

Think so 52.9
If anything, think so 29.8
If anything, do not think so 8
Do not think so 5.1
Don't know; No answer 4.5

 

Q26 Please give the names of up to three places inside Japan that come to mind when you hear the words "beautiful streets."

Had one response 65.9
Had two responses 34.4
Had three responses 13.7
No place in particular 28.3
Don't know; No answer 5.7
(Top ten)
Place name Rank Responses Percentage
Kyoto 1 521 29.9
Kurashiki 2 91 5.2
Nara 3 90 5.2
Kanezawa 4 74 4.3
Takayama 5 72 4.1
Sapporo 6 61 3.5
Kobe 7 45 2.6
Hakodate 8 40 2.3
Hagi 9 36 2.1
Okinawa 10 35 2
Kamakura 10 35 2
Sendai 10 35 2
Number of respondents 1148
Number of responses 1985

 

Q27 The Road Trucking Vehicle Law was recently revised and included a stricter crackdown on parking violations in June . As best you can tell, do you or do you not think that the stricter regulations have led to fewer illegally parked cars ?

Think so 32.7
If anything, think so 29.2
If anything, do not think so 12.3
Do not think so 16
Don't know; No answer 9.6

 

Q28 With the revision to the Road Trucking Vehicle Law, private sector “traffic wardens” became able to take action against parking violations. Do you or do you not think that trusting the private sector with conducting parking violations was good?

Think it was good 30.6
If anything, think it was good 31.8
If anything, do not think it was good 14
Do not think it was good 15
Don't know; No answer 8.6

 

Q29 Has the stricter crack down on parking violations given rise to any changes in your daily life or surroundings? If so, please select as many as applicable from the list below.

Number of times I use my car has decreased 4.3
I have come to choose stores with parking lots 24.4
I have come to spend money on parking lots 13.7
Has created a hindrance in giving rides to family members 5.6
Number of times I use buses, trains and taxis has increased 4.8
Traffic jams have lessened 11.7
Visibility on roads has improved 16.5
The livelihood of shopping areas has disappeared 6.4
Other 1.1
Nothing in particular; Don't know; No answer 53.6

 

Q30 Do you think the stricter crack down on parking violations has had a positive or negative influence on your family's normal activities overall?

Many positive influences 15.6
If anything, positive influences 36.8
If anything, negative influences 15.6
Many negative influences 5.1
Don't know; No answer 26.9

 

Q31 The following vehicles are currently subject to the same fines for parking violations as ordinary vehicles. Do you or do you not think it best that these vehicles are exempt from additional fines?
S1 Home delivery vehicles

Think best exempted 75.3
Do not think so 12.9
Cannot say 10.7
Don't know; No answer 1

 

S2 Delivery vehicles that transport merchandise to and from shops and stores

Think best exempted 69.6
Do not think so 15.7
Cannot say 13.4
Don't know; No answer 1.3

 

S3 Vehicles used by the elderly or handicapped and vehicles used for food delivery or pick up services for the elderly or handicapped

Think best exempted 86.6
Do not think so 6.6
Cannot say 5.9
Don't know; No answer 0.9

 

Q32 What type of measures, other than cracking down on parking violations, do you think are necessary to reduce the number of illegally parked vehicles? Please select as many as applicable from the list below.

Increase the number of parking lots 56.1
Increase the number of parking meters 27.3
Increase the number of parking meters 39.4
Make parking rules applicable to each area's circumstances, such as rulesthat allow parking for a limited time period 14.1
Limit the entrance of vehicles into city center areas 24.8
Better and increased buses and other public transportation facilities 9.3
Institute thorough education of traffic rules for drivers 28.5
Other 2.2
Nothing in particular 7.6
Don't know; No answer 1.8

 

Q33 Do you have a driver's license?

Have 76.5
Do not have 23.3
Don't know; No answer 0.3

 

SQ If you answered "have" to the previous question, for what purpose do you usually use your car? Please choose one of the following.

Mainly for work purposes 25.8
Mainly for commuting to work 20.7
Mainly for personal use 42
Other 0.2
Don't drive much 10.5
Don't know; No answer 0.8

 

Q34 This question regards imports of American beef. The government recently decided to reopen the market to U.S. beef imports, which it had previously halted due to contamination by exposure to meat at high-risk for BSE (bovine spongiform encephalopathy). Do you support or not support this decision to reopen the market?

Support 19.4
If anything, support 17.5
If anything, do not support 21.5
Do not support 37.7
Don't know; No answer 4

 

Q35 Do you or do you not feel anxiety regarding the safety of American beef?

Greatly feel anxiety 46.3
Feel a little anxiety 33.9
Do not feel much anxiety 12.9
Feel no anxiety at all 5.9
Don't know; No answer 1

 

Q36 Do you want to eat imported American beef right away, wait a little while and then decide, or not want to eat it at all?

Want to eat 10.2
Wait a little while and then decide 43.1
Do not want to eat 45
Don't know; No answer 1.7

 

Q37 Do you or do you not think that it should be made mandatory to label food served in restaurants and processed food products with origin stickers?

Think so 76.9
If anything, think so 14.6
If anything, do not think so 2.8
Do not think so 4.3
Don't know; No answer 1.4

Basic Attributes

Region:

Hokkaido/Tohoku (1 circuit; 6 prefectures) 11.8
Kanto (1 metropolis; 6 prefectures) 29.1
Chubu (10 prefectures) 20.1
Kinki (2 urban prefectures; 4 prefectures) 18
Chukoku/Shikoku (9 prefectures) 10.3
Kyushu (8 prefectures) 10.6

 

Size of City:

Large city 21.4
Major urban area 19.6
Medium-sized city 24.6
Small city 22.6
Town or village 11.8
Figures based on April 1, 2006 classification system.

 

F1 Sex:

Male 48.7
Female 51.3

 

F2 Age:

20-24 years old 4.7 Twenties 10.6
25-29 years old 5.9
30-34 years old 7.2 Thirties 14.9
35-39 years old 7.6
40-44 years old 7.5 Forties 14.7
45-49 years old 7.2
50-54 years old 8.8 Fifties 21.8
55-59 years old 13.0
Sixties 21.7
Seventies or older 16.4

 

F3 Education:

Elementary or Junior High School Graduate 14.6
High School Graduate 51.2
Two-yearCollegeor University Graduate 33
Don't know; No answer 1.2

 

F4 Employment:

Agriculture, forestry or fisheries 5.2 Self-employed 16
Commerce, industry or services 9.4
Freelance 1.5
Administration or professional 5.2 Salaried worker 42.3
Office or technology 16.9
Labor or services 20.2
Full-time housewife 23.0 Unemployed; Not working 41.7
Women other than housewives 4.2
Student 1.6
Other; unemployed; Don't know; No answer 12.9

 

F5 Annual Salary Range:

Less than 2,000,000 yen 10.2
2,000,000 - 4,000,000 yen 21.2
4,000,000 - 6,000,000 yen 22.2
6,000,000 - 8,000,000 yen 14.0
8,000,000 - 10,000,000 yen 6.9
More than 10,000,000 yen 6.3
Don't know; No answer 19.3

Disclaimer

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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