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44% of Japan's election winners want doc tampering scandal further probed: poll

This March 2020 file photo shows then Prime Minister Shinzo Abe speaking at a budget committee of the House of Councillors about the Ministry of Finance's document tampering scandal concerning the cut-price sale of state land to nationalist school operator Moritomo Gakuen. (Mainichi/Masahiro Kawata)

TOKYO -- Some 44% of recently elected members of the House of Representatives said that the Ministry of Finance's document tampering scandal concerning the cut-price sale of state land to nationalist school operator Moritomo Gakuen should be further investigated and explained, a Mainichi Shimbun survey has found.

    Based on the results of the lower house election on Oct. 31, the Mainichi Shimbun compiled and analyzed the answers of the winners from a questionnaire conducted on all candidates before the election.

    As a result, even within the ruling parties, 17% of the successful candidates from the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and 35% of those from Komeito have called for a further investigation and explanation. One of the focal points for the future will be how Prime Minister Fumio Kishida deals with this Moritomo Gakuen case, which is considered to be a "negative legacy" of the prolonged administrations of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his successor Yoshihide Suga.

    As for the consumption tax rate, 60% of general election winners said it should be maintained at 10% for the time being, exceeding the 36% who said it should be lowered.

    With regard to the selective surname system for married couples, which is receiving more and more public attention, 58% favored introducing the system, while only 21% opposed it. The cautious stance of LDP lawmakers stood out, accounting for 87 of the 94 individuals who opposed the introduction.

    (Japanese original by Jun Aoki, Political News Department, and Ko Sato, Poll Office)

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