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Inside Japanese politics

Japan public favors Kono and Ishiba in LDP race: poll

Almost 70% want Prime Minister Suga to step down by end of his term

Taro Kono, left, Japan's regulatory reform minister and minister in charge of vaccinations, and Shigeru Ishiba, former secretary-general of the LDP, ranked a close first and second as favorable candidates for the LDP president in the Nikkei poll. Neither has made clear whether he will run. (Photos by Yumi Kotani and Kosuke Imamura) 

TOKYO -- Taro Kono, Japan's regulatory reform minister and also minister in charge of vaccinations, ranked first in a Nikkei poll as "a person suited to be the next president of the Liberal Democratic Party." The answer was chosen by about 16% of respondents in an opinion poll conducted from Aug. 27 to 29 by Nikkei.

Shigeru Ishiba, former secretary-general of the ruling party, almost tied for first place, with just a fraction of a percentage point below Kono. Fumio Kishida, the former chairman of the LDP's Policy Research Council, who has announced his candidacy, placed third at 13%, while Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga came in fourth at 11%.

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