As of March 28-30, 2010 Presidential Survey

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Gordon to media: Where have all the debates gone?

“We should have more debates.” Bagumbayan standard-bearer Sen. Richard Gordon said on Monday that with the campaign period entering the homestretch, media companies should be organizing more debates, particularly among presidential candidates.

Bagumbayan standard-bearer Sen. Richard Gordon said on Monday that with the campaign period entering the homestretch, media companies should be organizing more debates, particularly among presidential candidates.
“The media is losing by default and our people are the biggest losers,” said Gordon.
TV network ABS-CBN was supposed to air a presidential debate live two weeks ago but this was scrapped two days before air time after some candidates backed out.
Gordon, who had confirmed his attendance at the debate, said upon learning of the cancellations: “Those who refuse to join debates show that they cannot stand the pressure of facing the people.”
On Monday, he told reporters that candidates who declined invitations to debate were “idiots.”
It is the right of the voters to question those begging for their votes, according to Gordon.
“Can’t we ask Noynoy (Aquino) what his track record is? Can’t we ask (Manny) Villar about the C-5 controversy?”
“Candidates should demonstrate not only their ability to spend money or their ability to use their family (to campaign) but also their capability (to lead),” he added.
He said the scandals involving Villar and Aquino would continue to hound them even if one of them became president.
“How could they concentrate on working if there are issues they could not answer [in debates]?” he said.
He said Aquino should explain why his family owned more than 4,500 hectares of land when ordinary Filipino families could not afford 50 square meters.
He said Villar should also explain the big loans his companies received from the Government Service Insurance System for his subdivisions that got the GSIS into financial trouble.
He asked: “Who would you rather look for jobs for our people? Who has the credibility to get business for this country –Noynoy, Villar or Gordon?”
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Administration supporter to ‘shock’ nation in LP move—Aquino

An administration stalwart will join Senator Benigno Noynoy Aquino III's camp next week in a move that would “shock” the people, the Liberal Party standard-bearer himself revealed on Tuesday.

An administration stalwart will join Senator Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III's camp next week in a move that would “shock” the people, the Liberal Party standard-bearer himself revealed on Tuesday. "Next week ho ay magugulat kayo. Isa sa mga stalwarts sa kasalukuyang administrasyon ay sasama ho sa kampanya natin [Next week, you will be surprised. One of the stalwarts of the present administration will join our campaign]," Aquino said at a press conference here.
But the senator immediately asked for understanding that he could not name the administration official at this point.
When pressed by this reporter after the press conference how the entry of this person would rock the administration," Aquino said, "Kapag hindi ka nagulat, huwag mo na akong kausapin [If you won’t be shocked, don’t talk to me]."
Pressed further, the senator said, "Ewan ko kung yayanig [I don't know if this will shock them]. Siguro [Maybe] sometime by next week, alam na nila kung sino pero ako hindi ko iniexpect [They will know who, but as for me, I didn't expect it]."
Aquino said he himself was even surprised that this person is joining his camp.
Asked again if the entry of this person might result to the collapse of the administration, Aquino answered in the negative.
"Hindi naman. Hindi naman ganun kaano pero pag ika nga ...ha? Pati yan sumama sa inyo. Parang ganun ang reaction [Not really. But you'd say, 'Ha? Even that person joined you?],’" he said.
Aquino immediately defended the entry of this soon-to-be former administration supporter and other administration members into the LP against criticisms by other camps.
He said the move did not mean the administration's support for his presidential bid.
"E ito yung mga pumapalag from time to time na maski miyembro ng Lakas e. Hindi naman yung mga baluktot pinipilit maging tuwid. Itoy yung talagang napagsabihan din ni Gng. Arroyo from time to time [They are those who protest from time to time even if they’re from Lakas. They’re not those who are corrupt and are trying to be straight. They are those whom Mrs. Arroyo would reprimand from time to time]," he pointed out.
Aquino suddenly stopped, saying he was giving too many clues that might lead to the identification of this administration official.
"Baka naman ma-pressure pa yung papunta na sa amin e [He might be pressured, especially since he’s moving to us]," he further said.
Earlier on Tuesday, Former Supreme Court Chief Justice Hilario Davide Jr. reiterated his support for Aquino III and runningmate Senator Manuel “Mar” Roxas II.
"I think this is the best time to have a real change through the leadership of [Senators Aquino and Roxas]," Davide said at a press conference here.
Davide said he resigned as the Philippine ambassador to the United Nations months ahead before his term expired on June 30, 2010 because he wanted to enlighten the people in choosing the best leader for the country.
"I'm here knowing that victory is sure for Noynoy and Mar and for the entire LP," he said.
Davide's son and namesake, Hilario Davide III, is seeking a gubernatorial post under Aquino's party.
Davide was joined by his son, Aquino, city mayor Tomas Osmena, and some LP senatorial bets like former Senator Ralph Recto, incumbent congressmen Nereus Acosta and Rufino Biazon, Sonia Roco, and Martin Bautista.
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Aquino widens poll lead

Numbers can still change depending on local bets.

Ahead in all areas and socioeconomic classes, presidential candidate Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III has widened his lead over rival Manuel Villar, whose numbers dropped significantly over the past two months, results of a survey conducted last month by Pulse Asia Inc. show.
Thirty-seven percent of the respondents, up by a percentage point, said they would vote for Senator Aquino, Liberal Party (LP) standard-bearer, had the elections been held last month.
Support for Senator Villar, presidential candidate of the Nacionalista Party (NP), dropped to 25 percent from 29 percent in February and 35 percent in January.
Aquino said he was elated by the results of the Pulse Asia survey, which he reckoned moved him closer to winning the presidential race.
He paid tribute to his allies, volunteers and supporters for helping him maintain his lead since he declared he was running for president seven months ago.
“This is proof that our people are determined to walk the road to change for the good of everyone,” he said.
He vowed to dance like South African leader Nelson Mandela if he succeeds in seeing President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo leave after nearly a decade in office.
Pulse Asia’s latest survey, conducted from March 21 to March 28, used a multistage probability sample of 3,000 adults and had an error margin of plus-or-minus 2 percentage points.
Deposed President Joseph Estrada was third with 18 percent, the same level of support he got in February.
Administration standard-bearer Gilbert “Gibo” Teodoro was fourth with 7 percent, while Sen. Richard “Dick” Gordon of Bagumbayan and Bro. Eddie Villanueva of Bangon Pilipinas each had 2 percent.
Other candidates had a voter preference of below 1 percent—Nicanor Perlas (0.3 percent), John Carlos “JC” de los Reyes (0.2 percent) and Sen. Jamby Madrigal (0.1 percent).
In the vice presidential race, Aquino’s running mate, Manuel “Mar” Roxas II, continued to enjoy a significant lead over other candidates with a 43-percent voting preference. Villar’s running mate, Loren Legarda, was a far second with 23 percent, while Jejomar Binay had 19 percent.
Others received 3 percent or less—Bayani Fernando (3 percent), Eduardo Manzano (2 percent), Perfecto Yasay (1 percent), Jose “Jay” Sonza (0.5 percent) and Dominador Chipeco (0.1 percent).
Nine percent of the respondents refused to name or remained undecided on their preference for president, while a similar percentage refused to name or were also undecided on their vice presidential preference.
Mandela is idol
“One of my idols is Nelson Mandela. When our brothers led by Nelson Mandela ended apartheid, he was so euphoric that he could not help himself but dance,” said Aquino in an interview with reporters. “I think I’d be euphoric, too, if we end our calvary under Mrs. Arroyo and I would dance.”
Mandela’s victory in South Africa’s all-race elections in 1994 was made memorable by his effusive celebration after giving a victory speech.
LP spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said Villar’s falling ratings showed the public’s reaction to the “Villarroyo” alliance, referring to the alleged support of Ms Arroyo and her husband for Villar.
“The people have realized that the Villarroyo tandem is no fabrication. Villar is the administration’s secret candidate. The connections are becoming clearer everyday,” Lacierda said.
Villar, who has denied the Villarroyo alliance, was saddened yet unfazed by the survey.
Campaigning in Ilocos Norte province with the support of the children of the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos, Villar said the “black propaganda” against him and his decision not to hit back at his accusers could have affected his survey standing.
He said “we were too kind and did not retaliate against the black propaganda that was not true.”
Villar said he had gotten used to the fluctuating numbers in the surveys, relying on the adjustments his team had made in his campaign that enabled him to narrow the gap between him and Aquino.
He said the latest Pulse Asia survey needed him to have those “adjustments,” which he called “strategies” that he could not divulge.
“We’ve already fixed it and the truth is there’s a latest survey that would show that [I’m] closing in,” he said.
In Bacolod City, the wife of Villar downplayed the results of the survey. “We are not worried,” said Las PiƱas Rep. Cynthia Villar when asked for her reaction to the Pulse Asia survey
Command votes
Officials of the ruling Lakas-Kampi-Christian Muslim Democrats were elated by the slight improvement in Teodoro’s rating, but vowed to work harder on the ground to get him elected.
“That’s a welcome development,” party secretary general Raymundo Roquero said.
Roquero, however, said that the party believed more in the support of local officials and their constituents than survey results.
Party vice president, Prospero Pichay, said the “command votes” of governors counted more than survey results.
Not credible
Villanueva said he did not find pre-election surveys credible because he could not believe that his ratings had not improved after several months of campaigning.
“Last year [my rating] was 2 percent and it’s the same until now?” he asked. He said by now his rating should have gone up since Bangon Pilipinas had taken the campaign to many places.
Perlas said he distrusted surveys because he felt that the firms conducting them had already “written off” lesser known candidates like him.
Perlas said despite this, his ratings had actually been on an “upward trend,” which he attributed to more personal interaction with voters through sorties around Metro Manila, the Visayas and Mindanao.
32-point lead in ABC
In the socioeconomic class ABC, Aquino got the support of 49 percent, a 32-point lead over Villar who received 17 percent.
Aquino had the support of 37 percent of Class D compared with the 25 percent for Villar. In Class E, Aquino got 34 percent and Villar, 28 percent.
In Metro Manila, Aquino received the highest level of support among the regions with 42 percent. Villar got 17 percent.
Aquino was also ahead in the rest of Luzon with 33 percent compared with 26 percent for Villar. In the Visayas, the LP standard-bearer received 41 percent and Villar, 30 percent.
Aquino was also leading in Mindanao with 37 percent. Villar’s 23 percent was even lower than Estrada’s 29 percent.
Long way to go
Roland Holmes, Pulse Asia president, said that a month and a half was still a long way to go.
“In previous elections, our last survey was done three weeks before the polls, and certain shifts were still noted between that and the earlier survey round,” he said.
Holmes said the “complexion of the campaign” had changed because the campaign period for local positions had begun.
“Now, the presidential candidates are making sure that they’re either directly in touch with the voters or strengthening their connections on the local level.”
Bias for urban areas
Legarda said Pulse Asia and other polling firms usually engaged in selective sampling of voters across the country.
She said pollsters had “bias or limitations” for urban areas, which means that the concentration of respondents were in densely populated areas because of time-constraints.
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Erap camp to Comelec: Disqualify Villar over campaign ads

The camp of Puwersa ng Masang Pilipino standard bearer, former President Joseph Estrada, today dared the Commission on Elections to disqualify any candidate who has violated the Omnibus Election Code, particularly the limit set on airtime for his or her campaign advertisements.

“This is an acid test for our poll officials, and if they fail this one, then the results of the May 2010 national elections will forever be put in doubt," PMP spokesman Ralph Calinisan said.

Calinisan was reacting to the report recently by the advocacy group, Pera at Pulitika, and based on the data from the AGB Nielsen Media Research, which showed that Nacionalista Party president candidate Sen. Mannya Villar has already exceeded his alloted airtime for TV campaign ads, totalling 2,054 minutes.

The report also revealed that Villar has outspent his other rivals for the presidency, shelling out P1.2-billion from Nov. 1, 2009 to Feb. 8, 2010.

“What we are seeing here is a clear case of using money not to promote one’s program of government but to purchase a quick ride to the presidency,” Calinisan said.

“The Filipino electorate can see through this, and we are all calling on the Comelec to fulfill its mandate in this regard.”

He cited Section 11 of Comelec Resolution No. 8758, which sets the duration of airtime that a candidate may avail of for his or her campaign: 120 minutes in television or cable television, and 180 minutes in radio
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Davao's Duterte mum on backing Noynoy, but it’s ‘an open secret’

Incumbent Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte on Friday declined to confirm talks that he was supporting Liberal Party standard bearer Senator Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III.
"That remains to be announced," Duterte told GMANews.TV when asked whose presidential bid he was backing.
However, his campaign paraphernalia suggest otherwise. At the proclamation rally of the Dutertes' party, Hugpong sa Tawong Lungsod, Aquino's posters were plastered alongside the posters of the Duterte father-and-daughter tandem.
Duterte is running for vice mayor, a post currently held by his daughter Sara, who in turn is hoping to assume her father's current post.
The Liberal Party also held a motorcade to promote Aquino and running mate, Senator Manuel Roxas II, although the two candidates were not in Davao City.
No less than Sara Duterte's rival for the mayoralty post, House Speaker Prospero Nograles Sr., revealed that the elder Duterte was supporting Aquino.
"I am supporting Gibo [Gilberto Teodoro Jr. of Lakas-Kampi-CMD] because we are partymates. Duterte is supporting Noynoy," Nograles told GMANews.TV earlier in the day.
Locals interviewed by GMANews.TV said it was an open secret that Duterte was backing the son of the late President Corazon Aquino, whom the mayor supported during her long fight against the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos. "Hindi naman tago na si Noynoy (It's not a secret Duterte is supporting Noynoy)," said a market vendor.
Davao City is the fourth-largest Philippine city in terms of population, with registered voters reaching to more than 940,000. Winning the clear support of its feisty mayor is considered a prize plum for any national-level candidate.—JV, GMANews.TV
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