The Yomiuri Shimbun The Liberal Democratic Party scored 6.4 points out of 10 in a public assessment of its ability to govern, while the Democratic Party received 3.8, according to a recent opinion survey conducted by The Yomiuri Shimbun.
The survey was conducted more than four years after the inauguration of the Cabinet of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and just before the first anniversary of the Democratic Party’s establishment. Questionnaires were sent to respondents by mail.
Respondents were asked to award scores from zero to 10 points to five political parties based on their ability to govern. The parties included each have a total of at least 10 seats in the House of Representatives and the House of Councillors.
The LDP’s average score of 6.4 was the highest. The figure rose slightly from 6.1 points in the previous survey in July 2015, when the same questions were asked.
The largest opposition Democratic Party ranked third at an average score of 3.8 points. This was below Komeito’s 4.0.
Nippon Ishin no Kai scored 3.6, while the Japanese Communist Party scored 2.8.
The DP’s score did not rise markedly from the 3.7 that its predecessor, the Democratic Party of Japan, received in the previous survey in 2015.
The DPJ and the now-defunct Japan Innovation Party merged to form the current DP in March 2016.
The latest survey results clearly showed that voters’ evaluation of the DP has remained low since the establishment of the largest opposition party.
Among just supporters of the DP, the party’s average score was 6.1. But among respondents who did not support a specific political party, the DP’s score was 3.8. Among respondents who supported the LDP, the DP’s score was 3.5.
In contrast, the LDP’s average score among respondents who do not support a specific party was 5.5, and even among respondents who support the DP, the LDP’s score was 5.4.
In the survey, respondents were also asked to state how much they liked each party on a scale of one to five. Five represented liking a party, three indicated neutral feelings, and one represented disliking a party.
The average figures were 3.2 for the LDP, 2.7 for Nippon Ishin no Kai, 2.6 for the DP, 2.5 for Komeito and 2.4 for the JCP.
Concerning desirable situations for party politics, 57 percent of respondents favored having two major parties and some small parties. This percentage was unchanged from the previous survey, and accounted for by far the largest portion.
It was followed by 20 percent support for having one big party and several small parties, and 16 percent support for the existence of three midsize parties.