Despite his widely criticized rape remarks, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte remained the most preferred presidential candidate to win the elections according to the most recent survey released by Pulse Asia.
In its latest nationwide survey released Tuesday (April 26), Pulse Asia noted no significant movements in the numbers of Duterte and showed that the tough-talking mayor maintained its lead over his closest-rival, Senator Grace Poe.
In the survey conducted from April 16-20, 2016 around the time Duterte was widely criticized for his rape remarks, 35% of the 1,800 respondents still chose Duterte as their preferred presidential candidate to win. Senator Grace Poe remained at second place with an overall voter preference of 23%.
Liberal Party standard-bearer Manuel “Mar” Roxas is statistically tied at third place with United Nationalist Alliance presidential bet Jejomar Binay. Roxas scored 17% overall, while Binay got 16%. Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago got the support of 2% of the respondents, while 6% went to those did not express any choice for a preferred candidate.
The survey, conducted using face-to-face inteviews, had a plus-minus 2.3% margin of error at 95% confidence levels.
Pulse Asia said Duterte led in Metro Manila with 40 percent, Mindanao with 58 percent, but is sharing the lead with Mar Roxas in the Visayas. In Balance Luzon, three candidates – Poe, Binay, and Duterte – have practically the same share of voter preferences.
Duterte also led in all socioeconomic classes, posting 43 percent in ABC, 32 percent in D, and 40 percent in class E.
Shall their preferred candidate withdraws from the presidential race, most of the respondents chose Poe as their second choice. The lady senator led in all geographical areas except in Metro Manila for the second-choice voter preference. She got 32% in the rest of Luzon, 36% in the Visayas, and 34% in Mindanao. 29% of the respondents from Metro Manila did not have an alternative presidential candidate.
Aside from Duterte's rape remarks, news developments during the survey period include the death of 13 Abu Sayyaf Group members in a clash in Basilan, the clash between protesters and policemen in Kidapawan City, the hacking of the Commission on Elections website, the Comelec-sanctioned vice presidential debate at the University of Santo Tomas, the final decision of the Supreme Court on the disqualification petitions against Poe, and the Sandiganbayan's granting of bail to Janet Lim-Napoles among others.