Sen. Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. has closed in on Sen. Francis "Chiz" Escudero based on the latest BusinessWorld-Social Weather Stations pre-election survey on vice presidential candidates early this month.
Results of the nationwide survey conducted from Jan. 8 - 10 showed that Escudero obtained the nod of 28 percent of the 1,200 validated voters while Marcos of the Nacionalista Party had 25 percent. The two may be considered statistically tied since the survey had a margin of error of ±3 points for national percentages and ±6% each for Metro Manila, Balance of Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
Escudero's rating was 2 percentage points lower compared to the one he got in December. On the other hand, Marcos had an increase of 6 percentage points from his December rating.
Also statistically tied were administration vice presidential bet, Camarines Sur Rep. Leni Robredo who got 17 percent (down 2 percentage points from the December survey) and Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano who had 14 percent (17 percent in December).
Meanwhile, Sen. Gregorio "Gringo" Honasan of the United Nationalist Alliance got 8 percent, the same rating he got in December. On the other hand, Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV obtained 3 percent or 2 percentage points lower from the last SWS survey in December.
Cayetano and Trillanes are both members of the Nacionalista Party.
In the Pulse Asia survey conducted in December, Escudero and Marcos were also the top two vice presidential bets with 29 percent and 23 percent, respectively.
Cayetano, with 18 percent, and Robredo, 14 percent, were statistically tied in that survey. Trailing them were Honasan who got 9 percent followed by Trillanes with 4 percent.
Among the national issues that took place at the time the SWS survey was conducted in early January were the word war between Comelec chair Andres Bautista and Commissioner Rowena Guanzon over the poll body's comment to the Supreme Court regarding the disqualification cases of Poe, the announcement of the reopening of the Mamasapano probe and Malacanang's decision to keep Transportation Secretary Joseph Abaya despite calls for his resignation.
Escudero was thankful with his lead in the surveys amid what he said was their lack of resources and advertisement.
"Sa kabila ng kakulangan namin sa pera at ads, nagpapasalamat kami sa resulta ng surveys sa ngayon,” he said in a text message to GMA News Online.
For his part, Trillanes said the result means "we have to hit the ground running once the campaign period starts" on February 9.
"Anyway, it's still a very fickle voter preference," he said in a separate text message.
Both Escudero and Trillanes have yet to come up with television advertisements. — with Amita Legaspi/BAP/RSJ/TJD/KBK, GMA News