The poll by Nikkei and TV Tokyo shows Taro Kono’s leading poll on who should succeed Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.
The Japanese minister with the vaccine, Taro Kono, led a public opinion poll on who should succeed Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga as head of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party.
Kono has 27 percent support in the poll by the Nikkei newspaper and TV Tokyo who asked who would be ‘the right person’ to lead the party and become the next prime minister.
The results of the 9-11 September poll were announced on Saturday.
Former LDP secretary general Shigeru Ishiba was next with 17 percent, and former policy chief Fumio Kishida was third with 14 percent. Former Home Secretary Sanae Takaichi was fifth with 7 percent.
Kono, who also serves as minister of administrative reform, announced his candidacy on Friday, the third to make his intention official after Kishida and Takaichi.
Ishiba may not run for the party’s leadership, and is likely to support another candidate, the Jiji news service said on Saturday, citing sources close to him.
Suga said in a surprise move on September 3 that he would retire and end a one-year term, which was plunged by public support and dissatisfaction with his response to coronavirus.
This paved the way for a September 29 leadership vote among LDP members and grassroots legislators. The winner is virtually assured of the premiership because the LDP has a majority in parliament’s lower house.
After the LDP leadership vote, Japan is likely to hold a general election in the first half of November, Kyodo reported, citing government party lawmakers.
The poll by Nikkei / TV Tokyo follows earlier recordings that showed strong public support for Kono (58) to follow Suga.