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Duterte retains 11-percent lead

Despite allegations of hidden wealth, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte continues to lead his closest rivals by 11 percentage points a few days before Filipino voters troop to the poll.

A Pulse Asia survey taken on April 26-29 showed Duterte remaining on top with 33 percent, the same figure he got during the April 19-24 period.

The survey asked a total of 4,000 registered voters and had a +/- 1.5 percent error margin.

The survey was taken at the height of Sen. Antonio Trillanes’ expose about the alleged Duterte’s billion-peso transactions and 41 properties.

Liberal Party standard bearer Mar Roxas and Sen. Grace Poe are in a statistical tie with 22 and 21 percent, respectively.

Vice President Jejomar Binay, on the other hand, is in fourth spot with 17 percent. Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago brings up the rear with 2 percent.

In the vice-presidential race, Rep. Leni Robredo has caught up with consistent frontrunner Sen. Bongbong Marcos.
Both are statistically tied with Robredo and Marcos garnering 30 and 28 percent, respectively. Also tied for third are Senators Francis Escudero and Alan Cayetano with 18 and 15 percent, respectively.

The other candidates – Senators Gregorio Honasan and Antonio Trillanes – are languishing in the bottom with 3 and 2 percent, respectively.

There are no surprises in the race for the Senate based on the latest ABS-CBN survey conducted by Pulse Asia Research. Four thousand respondents were polled from April 26 to 29, with a nationwide margin of error of 1.5 percent.

The likely winning circle is led by Senate President Franklin Drilon, followed by Senator Tito Sotto, former Senator Kiko Pangilinan, former Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri, Senator Ping Lacson, Representative Manny Pacquiao, former PhilHealth director Risa Hontiveros, former TESDA chief Joel Villanueva, Senator Serge Osmeña, former Senator Dick Gordon, former Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, Senator Ralph Recto and Mayor Sherwin Gatchalian.

Political analyst Ramon Casiple believes all the negative issues thrown against Duterte would no longer affect his standing.

“Kung ngayon, wala nang mangyayari, kasi nga hindi tumatalab yung mga bumibira sa kanya. Yung BPI (Bank of Philippine Islands) issue, walang smoking gun dun eh. Pag ganun, hindi maniniwala tao sa iyo,” Casiple said.

Casiple, however, won’t hazard a prediction.

“Kung ganito na sitwasyon, mananalo si Duterte. But between now until the elections, may mga scenarios na lumilitaw na matatalo siya,” said Casiple.

He cited as an example a major block which switches allegiances to another candidate.

“Pag sufficiently nagco-command ng malaking bloke ng constituents ’yung isang gumanon, pwede pang mangyari kasi madedetermine yan hanggang election day,” he explained.

Casiple also cited the influence of the Iglesia Ni Cristo which is known for bloc-voting.

“Pati president natin nakipag-usap sa INC. Saan ka nakakita ng ganun?” he asked.

Surveys conducted by Pulse Asia and the Social Weather Stations (SWS) have mirrored the results of past elections.

In nearly the same period in 2010, then Senator Benigno Aquino III topped the Pulse Asia survey with 39, 19 points ahead of former President Joseph Estrada and Sen. Manny Villar.

Aquino went on to win the elections convincingly. (VANNE TERRAZOLA)