Teodoro camp says he’s moving up, slowly but surely
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—Slowly but surely, administration presidential candidate Gilbert “Gibo” Teodoro Jr. is moving up in the ratings and a “strong surge” in the latter half of the campaign for the May elections is possible, according to the head of a polling outfit.
Prof. Alfredo Sureta Jr., head of the survey group Stratpolls, said Gibo’s “slow, but sure” campaign strategy seems to be paying off, noting the former defense secretary’s growing conversion influence across all sectors.
He also cited the possibility of a strong surge in the ratings when the local election campaign period starts in March and the advantage of the Lakas-Kampi-CMD political machinery kicks in.
In a briefing in Makati City this week, Sureta said Teodoro continued to gain ground in the presidential campaign, climbing in the pollster’s latest tracking poll, from a mere 4 percent to 11 percent.
The independent survey group, in partnership with the news daily Business Mirror, released its latest nationwide survey of 1,500 voters from Feb. 26 to March 3, showing the ratings of Gibo and the other contenders in the May 10 presidential race.
“Secretary Teodoro’s fourth ranking at this point, is understandable, given that he came late into the race,” Sureta told reporters during a press conference at the Business Mirror office in Makati City.
Another survey, commissioned by foreign-based companies in the country, has placed Teodoro second with a double-digit score, ahead of the usual survey front-runner Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III, according to the administration party.
The party said that based on the Campaigns and Images Group survey, Teodoro posted a 24-percent score, placing second to Nacionalista Party’s Sen. Manuel Villar’s 31 percent.
Aquino of the Liberal Party scored 20 percent with former president Joseph Estrada lagging behind at 13 percent.
The survey, which ended on March 7, was conducted with more than 5,000 respondents across the country. Campaigns and Images Group was commissioned by US- and UK-based companies in the country to perform the poll survey.
“Teodoro will continue to surge. We believe the local machinery will provide another 10 to 15 percent,” said Mike Toledo, Teodoro’s campaign spokesperson in a statement Thursday.
He stressed that the survey was conducted on a larger sample, three times more than the usual 1,500 respondents of hugely popular pre-election surveys—Pulse Asia and the Social Weather Stations—whose results always ranked Teodoro fourth place.
Nevertheless, the administration camp urged voters not to let survey results influence their choice for the next president and instead focus on the candidate’s qualifications and capability to lead the country.
Elated by the results of the independent survey, Teodoro Thursday said voters should also junk the “losers’ mentality,” where voters opt to give their ballots to another candidate because their choice was poorly faring in poll surveys.
Sureta said other candidates had been preparing for this elections as early as two years ago. “But as voters, particularly the youth—though not limited to them—get a chance to hear the former defense secretary speak, combined with his party’s strong political machinery whose influence may kick in after the local campaign period starts in March, I wouldn’t discount him from making this a tighter race,” he said.
Toledo said: “The results of this survey and Professor Sureta’s insightful observations confirm that we’re on the right track with regard to Gibo’s campaign strategy. The youth vote and the ruling party’s campaign machinery—these are Gibo’s ‘secret weapons,’ and we intend to use these to the hilt to guarantee his electoral victory come May 10.” Jocelyn R. Uy