UPDATE1-Embattled Japan PM’s support rate slips further

* Ruling party needs election win to avoid deadlock

* Doubts growing about PM’s leadership

* Dep PM says can’t hold upper, lower house polls together
(Adds comment by deputy PM)

TOKYO, April 19 (BestGrowthStock) – Only a quarter of voters support
Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama’s government, a newspaper
poll showed on Monday, as his troubles mount before a mid-year
election his party must win to avoid policy deadlock.

Support fell 7 percentage points from last month to 25
percent in a poll by the Asahi Shimbun daily, continuing a slide
from an initial high of around 70 percent when Hatoyama took
office last September.

A separate poll by the Mainichi Shimbun daily showed support
at 33 percent, down 10 points from March.
Graphic on Japan voter support: http://r.reuters.com/myv63g
Graphic on voter intentions: http://link.reuters.com/jev83j
For more stories on Japanese politics click [ID:nPOLJP]

Hatoyama’s Democratic Party took power for the first time
last year after winning a general election for parliament’s lower
house by a landslide, but voter doubts have since grown over the
premier’s decision-making abilities on the economy and diplomacy.

Around half of voters in the Asahi poll said Hatoyama should
resign if he fails to settle a feud with Washington over where to
relocate a U.S. military base on Japan’s southern Okinawa islands
by the end of May, as he has promised.

The percentage of voters who planned to vote for the
Democrats in an upcoming election for the upper house fell to 24
percent from 30 percent, the Asahi poll also showed, narrowing a
gap with its main opposition rival.

The Democrats need to win an outright majority in the upper
house election expected in July to break free of vocal coalition
partners that have muddled policy-making as Japan tries to
overcome deflation and cut huge public debt.

Japan’s opposition Liberal Democrats have called for Hatoyama
to resign and a lower house election to be held if he fails to
resolve the feud over the U.S. Futenma base by the end of May,
and National Strategy Minister Yoshito Sengoku said on Friday
that was possible.

On Monday, though, Finance Minister Naoto Kan, who is also
deputy premier, told reporters that holding simultaneous
elections for the two chambers would be impossible.

Many analysts agreed such a scenario was unlikely given that
the Democrats would almost certainly see their huge lower house
majority eroded if a general election were held soon.
Stock Market Investing

(Reporting by Chisa Fujioka and Linda Sieg; Editing by Michael

UPDATE1-Embattled Japan PM’s support rate slips further