When Caroline kennedy was the United States ambassador in Tokyo, Mr. Kishida gave him T-shirts, aprons and mugs with photographs or cartoons of his face.
His attempts to enchant himself on social media have sometimes failed or led to ridicule.
A post he shared on Twitter and Instagram, which showed his wife standing in the kitchen doorway as he sat at the table eating a dinner she had prepared, he scoffed outright. Videos showing his wife, Yuko, 57, and their three children cheering him on, have been a bit more popular.
“He’s a bit out of step social and cultural with most of the population,” said Shihoko Goto, a Northeast Asia senior associate at the Wilson Center in Washington.
His modesty underpins a political pragmatism that allows him to turn around when certain ideas become unpopular or he needs to cater to a particularly powerful constituency. Most of the time, that constituency comes from the party, not the public.
As a Hiroshima politician, Mr. Kishida has opposed nuclear weapons and has taken more moderate positions on foreign policy. But as a candidate for prime minister, he stepped up his tough views on China and defended the restart of nuclear power plants, the vast majority of which have been idle since last year. triple fusion on Fukushima 10 years ago. Support for nuclear energy is a key issue on the agenda of the right wing of the Liberal Democratic Party.
Because Kishida won the prime ministerial election backed by lawmakers “more geared toward accommodating organized interests and big business,” he now has to reward them, said Megumi Naoi, associate professor of political science at the University of California, San Diego.