LUCENA CITY—Independent presidential candidate Senator Grace Poe and running mate Francis ‘Chiz’ Escudero on Wednesday said the recent Pulse Asia survey would not dampen their spirit to be hopeful in the Monday national and local elections.
”Ang palagi kong sinasabi ay ito: Gusto kong paniwalaan ang survey kung saan mababa ako para hindi ako maging kampante,” Poe said in a media interview during her campaign sortie here.
Based on the recent Pulse Asia survey commissioned by giant television network ABS-CBN, Poe is statistically tied with Liberal Party’s bet Mar Roxas behind frontrunning Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte.
Duterte kept his 33 percent ratings for the second straight week while Roxas garnered 22 percent, and Poe got 21 percent followed by Vice President Jejomar Binay with 17 percent and Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago with 2 percent.
”Hindi ako nawawalan ng enerhiya. Patuloy ang aking pag-iikot. Kung ano man ang perspektibo ng survey na ‘yan, pinag-aaralan namin,” Poe, erstwhile frontrunner, said.
Poe said her camp had conducted their own survey which showed different results.
Escudero, for his part, said their lack of political machinery pulled them down in the previous surveys.
”There is only one factor. We have no resources and machinery. We know that from the beginning and that’s why we have been trying to compensate by going around the country,” Escudero said.
Escudero is hoping that more big personalities and big political figures would support his and Poe’s candidacy.
In the vice presidential race, Escudero placed third with 18 percent behind congresswoman Leni Robredo and Sen. Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos Jr. with 30 and 28 percent, respectively.
Meanwnile, Senator Alan Peter Cayetano garnered with 15 percent; followed by Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV and Sen. Gregorio Honasan II with 3 and 2 percent, respectively.
Poe urged the Filipinos to discern carefully the brand of “change” they want for the country in the May 9 polls. “Hinihikayat ko ang ating mga kababayan na isipin nilang mabuti kung anong klaseng pagbabago ang gusto nila. Kailangan natin ng makataong pagbabago,” Poe said.
Poe said that while she continued to respect and trust survey results, they were never a guarantee. She cited the case of her late father, Fernando Poe Jr., who won overwhelmingly in the National Capital Region in 2004, contrary to surveys.
FPJ ran for president in 2004 but lost in what is widely believed to have been fraudulent elections.
“Hindi natin masasabi e. ‘Di ba si Senator Trillanes din noon ay ang layo-layo sa survey, biglang nakapasok noon bilang senador. Ganoon din naman si Vice President Binay na 10 points behind ilang araw bago ‘yung eleksyon,” Poe said.
Poe herself barely made it to the Magic 12 of the surveys in 2013 but ended up garnering more than 20 million votes to top the senatorial race. It was the highest number of votes cast for a candidate in Philippine election history.
“Dito naman sa eleksyon na ito, ginawa ko ang aking makakaya. Hindi ako sumusuko sa gitna ng lahat ng mga pagsubok. At higit sa lahat, hindi ko kinakalimutan ba’t ako tumatakbo,” she said.
Poe also takes pride in the fact that she ran a positive campaign, as she had promised the Filipino people and Manila Archbishop Luis Cardinal Tagle last year, before the campaign period began.
“Hindi ako nanira ng ibang kandidato para lamang umangat. Hindi ako gumawa ng black ops para lamang umangat,” she said.
Poe and Escudero along with the senatorial candidates of the Partido Galing at Puso will hold their miting de advance on Saturday at the historic Plaza Miranda where they also kicked off their 90-day campaign period.