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Moon's approval rating inches down amid dispute over minister nominee

By Yonhap

Published : Aug. 31, 2017 - 09:45

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President Moon Jae-in suffered a slight drop in his approval rating this week, a poll showed Thursday, amid a growing demand to withdraw his nomination for the new venture minister believed to hold what many believe is a distorted view on history.

In a survey conducted on 1,521 voters throughout the nation, 73.4 percent of the respondents polled said they approved of how the president managed state affairs, down 1 percentage point from a week earlier, according to Realmeter.

The weekly survey, carried out at the request of local radio station tbs, was conducted between Monday and Wednesday.
 
(Yonhap) (Yonhap)

The local pollster partly attributed the drop to North Korea's latest missile provocation. The communist state launched what is said to have been an intermediate-range ballistic missile that flew over Japan on Tuesday.

The controversy over the recent nomination of Park Seong-jin as the new minister of small businesses and startups may have also affected the people's sentiment, it noted.

Park, an engineering professor at Pohang University of Science and Technology, came under public scrutiny after his past remarks and publications suggested he may hold a different, if not contradicting, view on history than that of the president or his administration.

For instance, the 48-year-old was quoted as saying the country was founded in 1948, a view strongly advocated by the ousted former leader Park Geun-hye and her supporters, while Moon insists the national foundation dates back to 1919, when the Provisional Government of Korea was established in Shanghai.

Of all respondents, 21.5 percent disapproved of the president's management of state affairs, up 2 percentage points from a week earlier.

The latest poll had a margin of error of 2.5 percentage points and a confidence level of 95 percent.

The ruling Democratic Party also saw its approval rating drop slightly.

Its approval rating came to 52.2 percent, down 0.7 percentage point from a week earlier, while the main opposition Liberty Korea Party scored 16.8 percent, up 2 percentage points.

The splinter Bareun Party's approval rating slipped 0.3 percentage point to 6.5 percent, with that of the liberal People's Party reaching 6.2 percent, down 0.1 percentage point.

The progressive Justice Party came last at 6 percent though the weekly reading marked a 0.5 percentage-point increase from a week earlier. (Yonhap)