President Rodrigo Duterte remains to be the candidate to beat in the vice presidential race even if he only ranked second in the list of preferred vice presidential aspirants in a recent Pulse Asia survey, Malacañang said Wednesday.
The independent pollster found in a September survey that Senate President Vicente Sotto III obtained a double-digit lead against Duterte on possible vice presidential candidates in the May 2022 elections.
Reacting to the survey, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said that polls were only “snapshots of public opinion at a particular point in time” and were done when aspirants have yet to file their certificates of candidacy.
“Be that as it may, the President remains the candidate to beat in the 2022 elections,” the Palace official claimed.
Meanwhile, a PDP Laban faction pushing for Duterte’s vice presidential bid said it would use the survey as a “guidepost” for its strategy once the campaign period starts.
The ruling party also vowed to boost its efforts in highlighting Duterte’s achievements during his stint as chief executive to convince voters that he deserves another six-year term as vice president.
“We will harp on our achievements and our strengths because these are where our political opponents are lacking,” it said through a statement, citing the administration’s anti-drug war and the ambitious “Build, Build, Build” program.
President Duterte had accepted the nomination of the PDP Laban faction to run for vice president and signed the party’s certificate of nomination and acceptance.
The PDP Laban, however, is still convincing Senator Christopher “Bong” Go to be Duterte’s running mate.
In the Pulse Asia survey, Duterte secured the support of 14 percent of the poll’s respondents, while Sotto got 25 percent.
Manila City mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso and former Senator Bongbong Marcos ranked third with 12 percent each.
Duterte dropped to second place from the previous Pulse Asia survey results where he was the leading vice presidential candidate with an 18 percent rating. Sotto was only third in the previous survey with a rating of 10 percent.