MANILA, Philippines — Senator Francis Pangilinan has downplayed concerns that he and Vice President Leni Robredo have registered low survey rankings, explaining that past candidates who ranked high in surveys at the early stages of the election season suffered election defeats.
Pangilinan, who is seeking the vice presidency as Robredo’s running mate, was asked during the Kapihan sa Manila Bay forum on Wednesday if their ranking in the surveys is a cause for concern.
In response, he noted the other ‘reality’ that has been happening since the 2004 polls.
“I’ll also give you my share of reality check: lahat no’ng mga nangunguna sa survey since 2004 sa presidential elections, talo ‘pag dating do’n sa presidential elections. So ‘yon, these polls are the polls today, and we know, historically, uulitin ko, lahat nang mga nangunguna at this time, before the presidential elections,” Pangilinan said.
(I’ll also give you my share of a reality check: all of the candidates who led the surveys since the 2004 presidential elections, lost during election day. So that’s how these polls are today, and we know, historically, I will repeat it, all frontrunners at this time, before the presidential elections, lost.)
According to the senator, in 2004, the late former Education secretary and senator Raul Roco was leading in surveys for the presidential elections, but he eventually lost to then-incumbent president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo who sought another term after the impeachment of former president Joseph Estrada.
He also noted that former Senate President Manny Villar suffered the same fate when he lost against late former president Benigno Aquino III. The phenomenon was repeated in 2016 when front-runners Senator Grace Poe and former vice president Jejomar Binay lost to the eventual winner, President Rodrigo Duterte.
“Whether it was 2004, ang nangunguna no’n si Roco; 2010 ang nangunguna no’n Manny Villar. 2016, ang nangunguna no’n Grace Poe. So yes that’s the reality check that I will respond to your reality check na mababa kami sa poll,” Pangilinan said.
(Whether it was 2004, the frontrunner then was Roco; in 2010, Manny Villar was leading surveys. By 2016, Grace Poe was at the front of the pack. So yes that’s the reality check that I will respond to your reality check that we are lagging in surveys.)
“These are both realities ha. So the final poll that really matters is election day polls. In the meantime, talagang we will fight with all our might and make things right para ilagay na sa ayos ‘yong COVID-19 response, ilagay na sa ayos ‘yong ating economic recovery,” he added.
(These are both realities ha. So the final poll that really matters is election day polls. In the meantime, we will fight with all our might and make things right so that we can fix the COVID-19 response, and set our economic recovery in the right direction.)
According to the latest Pulse Asia survey released last September 29, Robredo would only get 8 percent of the votes if elections were held during the survey period, which was from September 6 to 11.
Robredo ranks behind Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte (20 percent), former senator Bongbong Marcos (15 percent), Manila Mayor Isko Moreno (13 percent), Senator Manny Pacquiao (12 percent), and Senator Grace Poe, who has not filed a certificate of candidacy for president (9 percent.)
READ: Pulse Asia: Sara Duterte top pick for president, Sotto leads VP polls
Pangilinan did not figure in the survey as his candidacy was a last-minute decision made only after Robredo announced last October 7 her presidential bid.
After Robredo’s announcement, more grassroots organizations rose to support the Vice President. Social media turned into pink — her supporters’ color of choice — after she formalized her presidential bid.
READ: Social media tickled pink by Robredo’s decision
READ: ‘Dilawan’ no more? Robredo turns to pink — the color of protest, activism
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