The nationwide survey, conducted between February 15 to 17, indicated that only three UNA bets made it to the top 12 while nine Liberal Party (LP) candidates made the list. The survey was conducted days after the start of the campaign period [Feb. 12].
The UNA candidates who made it the top 12 include Nancy Binay, JV Ejercito, and former Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri. While Binay rose in ranking (from 12th to 7th place), Ejercito (from 4th to 9th-10th) and Zubiri (from 7th to 11th-12th) dropped in the latest SWS poll results.
Cagayan Rep. Jack Enrile and re-electionist Gregorio Honasan, who were previously always in the top 12 dropped out. Enrile (from 8th-9th) now ranked 13th while Honasan, 15th (from 5th-6th) .
In contrast, nine LP bets made the list: re-electionists Loren Legarda (1st), Francis Escudero (2nd), and Alan Peter Cayetano (3rd), former Las Pinas Rep. Cynthia Villar (4th), former MTRCB chair Grace Poe (5th-6th), re-electionists Koko Pimentel (5th-6th) and Antonio Trillanes IV (8th), Paolo Benigno "Bam" Aquino IV (9th-10th), and Aurora Rep. Sonny Angara (11th-12th).
It marked the first time that Bam Aquino, first cousin of President Benigno Aquino III, was able to break into the top 12 since SWS-BW began its surveys in August 2012.
He was last ranked 15th in the SWS-BW January survey.
Villar, Poe, Trillanes, and Angara likewise made significant gains since the January survey. Villar used to be in 8th to 9th place; Poe 5th to 6th place, Trillanes 10th to 11th place, and Angara, 13th place.
The other candidates ranked in the survey are former Senator Maria Consuelo "Jamby" A. Madrigal (14th), former Senator Jun Magsaysay (16th), former Senator Dick Gordon (17th), former Akbayan Rep. Risa Hontiveros (18th), former Senate President Ernesto Maceda (19th), former Tarlac Governor Tingting Cojuangco (20th-22nd), Bro. Eddie Villanueva (20th-22th), Zambales Rep. Mitos Magsaysay (20th-22nd), Puerto Princesa Mayor Edward Hagedorn (23rd), Bayan Muna Rep. Teddy Casino (24th), Bro. Lito Yap David (25th), Ramon Montaño (26th-27th), JC De Los Reyes (26th-27th), Dick Penson (28-30), Sammy Alcantara (28th-30th), Grego Belgica (28th-30th), Christian Señeres (31st to 33rd), Bal Falcone (31st-33rd), and Bro. Mars Llasos (31st-33rd).
Madrigal, Hontiveros, and Magsaysay are running under the LP-led coalition.On the other hand, Gordon, Maceda, Cojuangco, and Magsaysay are running under UNA. 'Political realities'
Despite the latest development, UNA secretary general and campaign manager Navotas Rep. Toby Tiangco said it is still "too premature for the LP to gloat."
“The fact remains that the LP has barely made it to the top 12 in the SWS survey of February 15-17, and the bigger fact remains that the top 12 is dominated by non-LP candidates and UNA candidates,” Tiangco said.
He added that the latest survey results supposedly do not "reflect the political realities in the ground nor voters’ preference."
“With all due respect to SWS, three days are not enough to capture voter sentiment or to predict outcome between now and election day. It is expected that the camp will use surveys upon surveys to establish a trend and condition the minds of the voters,” he said.
Tiangco added that the only waly LP can dominate the 2013 polls is by "resorting to the tactics employed by the Arroyo administration in previous elections."
"This is the reason why we find in the LP roster known special operators of the discredited regime. It is now obvious that these rabid Arroyo defenders, apologists and operators were enlisted for their expertise in fraud, special operations and black propaganda. So this is where the LP’s ‘daang matuwid’ is taking us: back to the Arroyo ways of tampering with the people’s mandate,” he said. Closer to 12-0 target
On the other hand, Deputy Speaker Lorenzo Tañada III, LP spokesperson, said the results of the recent SWS poll opens more possibility for administration slate to sweep the senatorial slate.
“Elections are still 76 days away. Anything can still happen, but it is still a possibility to get all 12 candidates of Team Pnoy in the winning circle. The fact that two additional members of Team PNoy got in the Magic 12 is encouraging,” Tañada said in a text message.
“We have to push members of Team Pnoy who are in the Magic 12 higher in the rankings in order to have space for the three others to get in,” he added.
Three of the administration slate's candidates failed to make it to the Magic 12 — Madrigal, Jun Magsaysay and Hontiveros.
Eastern Samar Rep. Ben Evardone, another LP coalition spokesman, meanwhile said the administration candidates' “commitment to pursue the reform agenda” of the Aquino government pushed them higher in the survey rankings.
“The dominance of Team Pnoy in the latest SWS survey shows that the voters are now realizing whom they will trust as partners of President Aquino in implemetnting his reform agenda,” Evardone said in a separate text message. — with Andreo Calonzo/RSJ, GMA News