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Over 70% of Mainichi pollees want budget for 2020 Tokyo Games slashed

Seventy-four percent of respondents in a weekend Mainichi Shimbun poll said the costs of the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics should be restrained as much as possible by using existing venues, while 16 percent said construction should be carried out as planned to promote sports after the games.

In the poll conducted on Nov. 5 and 6, 70 percent said they supported Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike, while only 7 percent said they disapproved of her. Among respondents who supported her, 82 percent backed holding down the Olympic and Paralympic costs. The four parties involved in the 2020 Games -- the International Olympic Committee, the Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Japanese government and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government -- are expected to reach a conclusion on cost-cutting measures and venue plans for rowing/canoe and volleyball events by the end of November.

Twenty-six percent of pollees said they supported Democratic Party (DP) leader Renho, who assumed the post in the largest opposition party in September, while 36 percent said they disapproved of her, and 32 percent said they were uninterested. While Renho garnered nearly 70 percent of approval among DP supporters, the most common response from unaffiliated respondents was "uninterested," at 42 percent. Among those respondents, 20 percent were in favor of Renho while 31 percent disapproved of her.

In contrast, slightly over 80 percent of DP supporters approved of Koike. The survey showed that her popularity is high regardless of party affiliation, with 59 percent of independents saying they support her.

Asked about Emperor Akihito's abdication, 66 percent of respondents said the existing system should be changed to allow him and future emperors to retire, while 18 percent were for a one-time abdication measure for the current Emperor alone. Five percent said that the current system regarding imperial succession does not need to be changed.

The approval rate for the Cabinet of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was 48 percent, up 2 points from the previous survey in September, while the disapproval rate was 31 percent, down 4 points. By party affiliation, 32 percent of pollees supported the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, 9 percent the DP, 4 percent ruling coalition partner Komeito, 4 percent the Japanese Communist Party and another 4 percent the Nippon Ishin no Kai party. Thirty-four percent of respondents identified themselves as unaffiliated.

The opinion poll covered 1,540 households with members aged 18 and over nationwide, excluding residents in no-go zones around the Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant. A total of 949 people, or 62 percent, responded.

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