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Closer than ever

Poe still ahead, but Duterte now 2nd in latest poll

THE presidential race just got even tighter as Senator Grace Poe, who remained the frontrunner, lost three percentage points while Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte became the biggest gainer with four percentage points more, the latest The Standard Poll conducted from Feb. 24 to March 1 showed.

With the survey’s national margin of error of +/- 1.8 percent, three presidential aspirants were statistically tied for first place—Poe with 26 percent (down from 29 percent in January), Duterte with 24 percent (up from 20 percent), and Vice President Jejomar Binay with 23 percent (up from 22 percent).

Administration standard bearer Manuel Roxas II came in close second at 22 percent while Senator Miriam Santiago trailed behind with only 2 percent.

“With Poe getting slight declines in vote share, Duterte gaining some points, and Binay and Roxas maintaining their vote support­—the presidential race has become tighter,” said Junie Laylo, The Standard’s resident pollster.

“The campaign effect is kicking in and the race is expected to be very fluid given the upcoming debates and increased sorties of candidates,” Laylo added.

Poe, who is still waiting for the Supreme Court to resolve her petition to overturn the decision of the Commission on Elections disqualifying her from the presidential race, welcomed the result of the survey.

“The people’s continued support for my candidacy across the country warms my heart and encourages me to work harder to deliver our message of hope for their future,” Poe said.

Her spokesman, Valenzuela Mayor Rex Gatchalian, said Poe remained on top “despite all the under-handed attacks launched against her.”

Duterte spokesman Peter Laviña welcomed the latest results.

“We are happy with the result of this survey, which we think mirrors what is really happening on the ground. We believe this is more reflective of the pulse of the communities and the preference of the Filipino people,” he said.

“The high increase by Duterte of four percentage points, noticeably the only one among the bets to gain  that much, is more reflective of what we are seeing as we visit communities, talks to volunteers, meet with support groups and sectors, and consult with local leaders across the country,” he added.

Roxas’ spokesman Akbayan party-list Rep. Ibarra Gutierrez declined to comment on the survey.

“The Vice President will continue to talk directly to the people about the need for an experienced and compassionate leadership to address the moral issue of poverty. Numbers will go up and down in the course of the campaign, but what will be constant is our ground game,” Binay’s spokesman Joey Salgado said.

Poe and Binay took the lead in the National Capital Region with 28 percent each, but with a higher margin of error of +/- 6 percent in the Metro Manila results, Duterte was statistically tied with them at 23 percent.

Across other major geographic areas with a margin of error of +/- 4 percent, Poe and Binay were tied in North/Central Luzon with 34 percent and 33 percent, respectively. The two presidential candidates were also tied in South Luzon/Bicol with Poe getting 32 percent and Binay with 27 percent.

Visayas continued to be Roxas’ bailiwick with 36 percent of respondents there choosing him, while Duterte was the top choice of voters in Mindanao with 49 percent.

Per region, Poe led in Cordillera (39 percent), Ilocos (40 percent), Central Luzon (34 percent), and Mimaropa (31 percent).

Duterte led in Zamboanga Peninsula (30 percent), Northern Mindanao (43 percent), Davao Region (79 percent), Cotabato Region (47 percent), Caraga (43 percent) and ARMM (45 percent).

Binay was the top choice among voters in Cagayan Valley (62 percent) and Eastern Visayas (27 percent) while Roxas led in Bicol (34 percent), Western Visayas (51 percent) and Negros Island (45 percent).

Poe and Binay were tied in Calabarzon with 33 percent each.

By locale, Poe led other presidential bets with 27 percent in urban areas, but this was down from 35 percent in January. In contrast, all other candidates saw a slight increase in their rating among voters in urban areas. 

Duterte was the top choice of voters in rural areas with 25 percent, with Poe close behind with 24 percent.

By economic class, Poe lost her lead to Duterte among voters from those belonging to Class ABC. Poe, who registered 30 percent in January, saw her rating go down to 21 percent while Duterte’s 27 percent in January rose to 30 percent.

The survey had 3,000 respondents—all of whom are registered voters with biometrics and who said they are sure to vote in the May elections—from 79 provinces across the country and the 17 cities in the National Capital Region.

Topics: Closer than ever , Grace Poe , Rodrigo Duterte , The Standard Poll , Junie Laylo

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