April 4, 2012 on NHK's Close Up Gendai television show
"We have to advance the 'comprehensive reform' [of social security and taxation systems] now on the table together with reforms of various types in a comprehensive manner. We need to tackle administrative reform as well. We also need to push through political reform, including a reduction in the number of Diet members. And most of all, we also need to be engaged in economic policy. These are major reforms in which we move forward comprehensively concerning the entire spectrum of issues. I consider this a situation in which the true worth of politics is called into question, asking whether Japan is able to surmount such enormous reforms as these. If the aspiration is indeed to devote one's efforts to helping society and helping people, we are now at a point where people are questioning whether or not individual politicians have that aspiration. I intend to do my best to proceed in such a way that this aspiration is properly expressed, in a manner through which the public can feel my intentions."