More than 80 percent of the new Lower House members from across the political spectrum support amending the pacifist Constitution, according to a survey jointly conducted by The Asahi Shimbun.

Together with the research office of Masaki Taniguchi, professor of political science at the University of Tokyo, The Asahi Shimbun analyzed the responses of all successful candidates in the election as of 3 a.m. on Oct. 23. Questionnaires were sent to all candidates in the Oct. 22 Lower House election and valid responses were received from 97 percent of them.

Among 436 respondents who answered the question of whether they are for or against constitutional revision, 359 respondents, or 82 percent, said they fully support or somewhat support it.

The ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and its junior coalition partner, Komeito, won more than 310 of the 465 seats that make up the two-thirds majority needed to initiate a constitutional amendment in the Lower House. The coalition’s final total remains unknown while vote counting for four seats continues.

The survey found that those who support revising the Constitution include members of opposition parties as well as those of the ruling parties.

By party, among the newly elected Lower House, 262 LDP members, or 97 percent, and 24 Komeito members, or 86 percent, agree with constitutional amendment. Among opposition parties, 40 members, or 89 percent, of Kibo no To (Hope), and all nine members of Nippon Ishin (Japan Innovation Party) also support revising the Constitution.

However, only 13 Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan (CDP) members, or 25 percent, are in favor of making the historic change.

The survey also asked those who said they fully support or somewhat support revising the Constitution whether they would prefer it to take place before the end of their Lower House term in October 2021, or if they had no preference about the timing. Sixty-five percent said they did not have a preference, while 35 percent said they want the revision to occur during the term.

Regarding articles to be revised, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is calling for the legal status of the Self-Defense Forces to be defined in the Constitution.

The survey asked all the newly elected Lower House members, regardless of their views on constitutional amendment, what they thought of clarifying the SDF’s position. Fifty-two percent were in favor of the proposal, 29 percent were against it and 19 percent said they were undecided.