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TOKYO, Nov 1 Support for Japanese Prime Minister
Yukio Hatoyama has dropped 10 points on concerns over the
government's economic policies and strained security ties with
Washington, a Kyodo news agency survey showed on Sunday.
While Hatoyama's support level remains above 60 percent,
such a sharp fall less than two months after the Democratic
Party of Japan took office suggests his political honeymoon
could be coming to an end.
Hatoyama has pledged to change how Japan is run by curbing
the power bureaucrats have over policy and by boosting
household disposable income instead of focusing attention on
But his cabinet has been plagued by discord on key policy
issues, raising doubts about Hatoyama's leadership and pushing
the government's support rate down compared with a Kyodo poll
taken just after the new administration was inaugurated in
The survey showed current support for the cabinet at 61.8
One concern cited was a dispute with Washington over the
relocation of a U.S. Marine air base on the southern island of
Okinawa as part of a wider reorganisation of the U.S. military
presence in Japan, Kyodo said. [ID:nT264763]
The new government has vowed to steer a more independent
diplomatic course from its main security ally.
Nearly 70 percent of respondents said it would be
acceptable for the government to change some campaign promises
to keep a lid on borrowings given Japan's public debt is
approaching 200 percent of GDP, the biggest among advanced
nations, Kyodo said.
Almost 50 percent of respondents said they did not support
the appointment of a former senior finance bureaucrat as Japan
Post's new president.
More than 60 percent said the appointment was a
contradiction to the Democratic Party's pledge to end the
practice of "amakudari", or "descent from heaven", in which
former officials parachute into cushy jobs after retirement.
(Reporting by Aiko Hayashi, Editing by Dean Yates)