Can Duterte-Cayetano win in Valenzuela City?

Valenzuela City is home to the Gatchalians – known Grace Poe allies. Does the Rodrigo Duterte-Alan Peter Cayetano tandem stand a chance?

Pia Ranada reports.

PIA RANADA, REPORTING: Rodrigo Duterte and Alan Peter Cayetano are back campaigning in Metro Manila. 

Today they visit Valenzuela City where the Gatchalian family dominates local positions. 

The Gatchalians are supporting Grace Poe for president. 

Duterte doesn’t meet with Mayor Rex Gatchalian, who also happens to be the spokesman of his rival Grace Poe. 

But he holds 3 public events, opting to go straight to the people. 

It’s not hard to see why he’s giving Valenzuela special attention. With its 319,000 voters, Valenzuela is the 12th most vote-rich city in the country.

It's an enthusiastic welcome for Duterte from the students of Valenzuela.

Addressing a mostly urban-poor audience, Duterte emphasizes he's like them...an everyday man.

RODRIGO DUTERTE, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Yung korupsyon sa gobyerno, tapos na yan. 'Pag ako maging presidente na walang masyadong, hindi nga ako summa cum laude, hindi naman ako cum laude, hindi nga ako valedictorian pero ipapakita ko sa inyo kung anong magawa ng ordinaryong abugado pag ilinagay niya ang puso niya at utak niya sa trabaho.

(Corruption in government will be stopped. If I become president, I may not be summa cum laude or cum laude, I may not be a valedictorian, but I will show you what an ordinary lawyer who puts his heart and mind into the job can do.)

Cayetano explains the pro-poor programs in their platform.

ALAN PETER CAYETANO, VICE-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Alam niyo po, pagagandahin ni Mayor yung 4Ps. Yung 4Ps ng kabila, pareho lang, yung 4Ps niya, mayroon pong medical, mayroon pong PhilHealth na zero billing, walang bayad sa ospital at bawat ospital, pampubliko o pang-gobyerno, o pang-pribado, ipalalagay niya ng 20 to 30 beds para sa inyo na gobyerno ang magbabayad para hindi kayo pumila lahat sa pampublikong ospital.

(Mayor Duterte will improve 4Ps. The 4Ps of the others is the same. Duterte’s 4Ps has medical, PhilHealth with zero billing, no need to pay the hospital, and each hospital, public, government or private, will have to put 20-30 beds for you to be paid for by the government so you don’t all have to line up at public hospitals.)

Some in the audience appear to be die-hard Duterte fans.

But others are still undecided.

EFREN, VALENZUELA CITY RESIDENT: Hindi, dati talaga ano ako, inaano ko, pinagpipilian ko dati talaga, ano ako, Grace Poe o Duterte, 'yun ang ano ko. Pero ngayon, medyo umiibabaw na yung, lumalamang na sa percentage 'yung sa akin nung Duterte. Eh parang, siyempre Pilipino naghahanap ka ng pagbabago talagang magagawa, parang ganoong magagawa di ba? Tingin ko wala siyang ganoong political will eh.

(Before, I was really, I’m really choosing between Grace Poe or Duterte. But now, I am leaning towards Duterte. [Why?] Because as a Filipino, you are looking for change to really happen right? [Can’t Grace Poe hack it?] I think she does not have enough political will.)

Later that day, Duterte hits Poe on her status as a natural-born citizen.

RODRIGO DUTERTE, PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Kung gusto niyo si Grace, okay lang, pero ang ibig ko sabihin baka two years after, kung may magsabi, may makitang ebidensiya at sabihin eh Amerikano talaga iyan, naloko na. E di mabuti pa kay Trump na lang kayo bumoto o kay Hillary, pareho lang rin.

(If you want Grace, that's okay, but what I'm saying is maybe after two years, if someone says, if someone shows evidence proving she is American, it will be messy. Might as well vote for Trump or Hillary, it's the same thing.)

Poe maintains her lead in Metro Manila and among urban residents.

But Duterte is closing in, according to a February to March Laylo survey.

Even here in Gatchalian country, he's converting votes.

Pia Ranada, Valenzuela City.  Rappler.com