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Revilla, Estrada top senatorial bets in Pulse Asia’s survey

February 5, 2010 1:33pm

(Updated 3:43 p.m.) Actor-politicians Ramon "Bong" Revilla Jr. and Jose "Jinggoy" Estrada bested other senatorial candidates in the latest Pulse Asia survey released on Friday.

The survey, conducted from January 22 to 26, showed Revilla with a voter preference rating of 51.9 percent while Estrada got 50.4 percent. With a ± 2 percent error margin, the two senators are virtually tied at first place. The survey used face-to-face interviews with 1,800 respondents (18 years old and above).

Both Revilla and Estrada are seeking reelection. Revilla is running under the administration Lakas-Kampi-CMD while Estrada is with the Puwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP).

Two other actor-politicians also got into the 12 most-preferred senatorial candidates: former Dangerous Drugs Board chair Vicente "Tito" Sotto III (30.5 percent) and Senator Manuel "Lito" Lapid (29.7 percent).

Source: Pulse Asia

Source: Pulse Asia

Reelectionists, former senators make it

Most of the candidates who got into the Top 12 were re-electionist and former senators.

Following Estrada were Senator Pia Cayetano (46.8 percent), former Senate President Frank Drilon (43.2 percent), Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago (41.2 percent) and Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile (39.7).

Following them were former Senators Ralph Recto (34.4 percent) and Serge Osmeña III (31.6 percent), Sotto, and Lapid (reelectionist).

The only candidates in the top 12 who did not have previous stints in the Senate were Ilocos Rep. Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. (26.3 percent) and 24 percent for businessman Jose "Joey" de Venecia III, son of former House Speaker Jose de Venecia Jr.

Senatorial candidates of the Liberal Party nearly made it to the Top 12: Muntinlupa City Rep. Ruffy Biazon, Bukidnon Rep. Teofisto Guingona III, lawyer Alex Lacson, and Sonia Roco, wife of the late Senator Raul Roco.

Militants, former military men out

Militant party-list representatives and detained military men gunning Senate seats did not make it to the list.

Detained former Army Scout Ranger commander Brig. Gen. Danilo Lim ranked somewhere along 17th to 24th with his 11.4-percent rating. He was trailed by fellow LP senatorial candidate Akbayan Rep. Risa Hontiveros, who received 11 percent.

Rep. Satur Ocampo of Bayan Muna got only 4.2 percent, while his fellow militant lawmaker Liza Maza of Gabriela got 4 percent. Former Marine Lt. Col. Ariel Querubin, who is detained for an alleged coup attempt in February 2006 along with Lim, received 3.9 percent. All three are running under the Nacionalista Party of Senator Manuel Villar Jr.

Bantay Rep. Jovito Palparan, known for his strong anti-communist stance during his time as Army general, ranked even lower with only 2.4 percent. Palparan had earlier said he is running for the Senate to go against the militant lawmakers.

Still a popularity contest

Political science professor Benito Lim explained that the recent Pulse Asia survey showed how much Filipino voters still value popularity over platforms.

"Dahil wala namang plataporma ang mga partido, kung sino ang mas popular, iyon ang pinipili ng botante. Kaya ‘yung mga artistang kilala nila ang mas gusto nila (Since our political parties do not have established platforms, voters still choose the more popular candidates. This is the reason why they choose actor-politicians, whom they are already familiar with)," Lim told GMANews.TV in a phone interview on Friday.

Lim likewise said that the mass media, especially radio and television, may have also shaped the survey respondents’ preferences for senators in the coming May 2010 polls.

"Radio and television remain to be the primary source of information for the voters. They prefer candidates they see most frequently in the media," he said.

He stressed, however, that the ranking of the senatorial candidates can still change, especially with the start of the campaign period on Tuesday.

"This is the time for the senatorial candidates to reinvent themselves. If they buy more radio or TV time, they will have the chance to overtake the others," Lim said. - with Andreo Calonzo, LBG/RSJ, GMANews.TV
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