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Prosecutor general’s rating as next presidential candidate rises to new high

Prosecutor-general Yoon Seok-youl answers questions at the parliamentary audito on Oct. 22. Yonhap
Prosecutor-general Yoon Seok-youl answers questions at the parliamentary audito on Oct. 22. Yonhap

Prosecutor General Yoon Seok-youl’s approval rating as a presidential candidate shot up to its highest point so far, narrowing the gap with ruling party heavyweights, in the final week of October.

In a survey conducted by Realmeter, Yoon was chosen by 17.2 percent of respondents as the favored candidate, the highest figure since Yoon was first included in relevant polls in June. Compared with a month earlier, he gained 6.7 percentage points.

The poll puts Yoon 4.3 percentage points behind Democratic Party favorites Rep. Lee Nak-yon and Gyeonggi Province Gov. Lee Jae-myung. Rep. Lee Nak-yon, the current Democratic Party chairman, saw his approval rating drop to 21.5 percent from the 22.5 percent recorded at the end of September.

Over the same period, Lee Jae-myung’s figure inched up from 21.4 percent to 21.5 percent.

In comparison, former presidential candidates Ahn Cheol-soo -- chairman of the minor opposition People’s Party -- and independent Rep. Hong Joon-pyo received 4.9 and 4.7 percent, respectively.

Yoon’s rise is thought to have been fueled by his public feud with Minister of Justice Choo Mi-ae, coupled with the ruling bloc losing support over its real estate policies.

In the final week of October, President Moon Jae-in’s approval rating stood at 44.9 percent, while 50.9 percent of respondents rated Moon’s performance negatively in the Realmeter survey, marking the eighth consecutive week in which negative assessments outpaced positive assessments.

The Democratic Party, meanwhile, saw its approval rating drop to 34.8 percent, from the previous week’s 35.1 percent. Over the same period, the main opposition People Power Party’s figure rose to 28.9 percent from 27.3 percent.

By Choi He-suk (cheesuk@heraldcorp.com)
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