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LDP ex-Secretary-General Ishiba ranked 1st choice for next party leader: Mainichi poll

Former LDP Secretary-General Shigeru Ishiba (Mainichi)

TOKYO -- In a nationwide public opinion poll conducted on Aug. 28, former Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) Secretary-General Shigeru Ishiba garnered the most votes for being the "most suitable" as the next president of the ruling party.

    The poll was conducted by the Mainichi Shimbun and the Social Survey Research Center on Aug. 28.

    Of the 774 respondents who answered the nationwide poll using their cell phones, 104, or 13%, chose Ishiba, followed by 82, or 11%, who chose Taro Kono, the minister in charge of administrative reform. Neither Ishiba nor Kono has announced their candidacy for the LDP presidential election to be held Sept. 29.

    Minister in charge of Administrative Reform Taro Kono (Mainichi)

    Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, the current president of the LDP, got 76 or 10% of the vote, and former chairman of the LDP Policy Research Council Fumio Kishida, who has announced his candidacy for the presidency, received 75 or 10% of the vote, vying for third place.

    In a poll conducted in January of this year, only 12 or 2% out of 711 respondents named Kishida as the person they thought was appropriate for prime minister after the next election of the House of Representatives. With the approval rating of Suga's Cabinet slipping, Kishida seems to have emerged as a possible contender against Suga in the leadership race.

    Former Internal Affairs and Communications Minister Sanae Takaichi and LDP policy chief Hakubun Shimomura had expressed their willingness to run in the race, but while Takaichi came in fifth with 24 or 3% of respondents, along with former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, only one respondent mentioned Shimomura's name.

    (Japanese original by Shingo Okuma, Social Survey Research Center)

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