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Justice Minister Cho Kuk still popular candidate for presidency: poll

Justice Minister Cho Kuk continues to be relatively popular as a prospective presidential candidate, seemingly unhurt by the prosecution’s ongoing probe into corruption allegations surrounding him and his family.

In an opinion poll of 1,026 adults conducted by marketing agency Kantar from Sept. 9-11, Cho ranked third with 7 percent of support, falling behind Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon with 15.9 percent and main opposition Liberty Korea Party Chairman Hwang Kyo-ahn with 14.4 percent.

Justice Minister Cho Kuk (Yonhap)
Justice Minister Cho Kuk (Yonhap)

Cho has risen as a Democratic front-runner in the presidential race, beating minor opposition Bareunmirae Party lawmaker and 2017 presidential nominee Yoo Seung-min and one-time presidential hopeful Gyeonggi Gov. Lee Jae-myung.

Former Liberty Korea Party Chairman Hong Jun-pyo, Liberty Korea Party Floor Leader Na Kyung-won and Democratic lawmaker and former Interior and Safety Minister Kim Bu-gyeom were also among high-ranking potential candidates in the poll.

The recent poll indicates a steep increase in support for Cho, from 4.4 percent in an August survey. Support for potential conservative presidential contender Hwang also surged from 10.4 percent in August.

Asked about their main considerations for next year’s general election, 43.4 percent of the respondents said the domestic economy, 24 percent said political reform, 17 percent said foreign relations and 9.4 percent said North Korea policy.

By Kim Arin (

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Korea Herald daum