Poe says performance, FPJ's legacy her 'edge' over Senate bets

RIZAL, Philippines – Reelectionist Senator Grace Poe has credited the legacy of her late father Fernando Poe Jr, on top of her work at the Senate, for her continued popularity among voters.

Poe made the statement in a media interview in Rizal on Tuesday, April 9, in response to questions on her consistent lead in pre-election surveys. (READ: Survey says: How 2019 senatorial bets are faring so far)

"Ang survey naman paiba-iba 'yan. So sa tingin ko, ang edge na lang natin kung anuman ang nagawa natin sa Senado. At hindi ko ipagkakaila, siyempre si FPJ (Fernando Poe Jr) pa rin. 'Yun ang naaalala ng mga tao lalo na ang mga nasa probinsya, very sentimental ang mga tao doon," Poe told reporters.

(Surveys change. So I think my edge is whatever we did in Senate. And I can't deny that it's still the legacy of FPJ. That's what people remember in the provinces, as they are very sentimental.)

Poe said that the remainder of the campaign period will still be a challenge because of the country's size.

"Masaya na nakakapagod pero talagang kailangang kayod talaga, kasi siyempre napakalaki ng Pilipinas para abutin mo lahat 'yan…. 'Yung mga gusto kong puntahan sa kampanya na 'to marami pang lugar, sa Mindanao, sa Visayas at mga liblib na lugar sa Luzon," she said.

(It's fun and tiring at the same time, but you really need to work hard because the Philippines is really huge to be able to cover all of it. I want to campaign in many places, in Mindanao, in Visayas, and remote areas in Luzon.)

She said she wanted to spend time in remote places in Luzon, and also public places like markets so that voters would get to see her in person.


On Tuesday, Poe held a motorcade around Cainta town in Rizal, together with Mayor Kit Nieto and his running mater Ace Sevillon. 

Pre-election surveys showed Poe consistently on top among preferred senatorial bets. In the recent February 2019 Pulse Asia Survey, the gap between Poe and reelectionist Senator Cynthia Villar narrowed. (READ: Scenarios: 2022 looms over tight midterm race– Rappler.com

Aika Rey

Aika Rey covers the Philippine Senate for Rappler. Before writing about politicians, she covered budget, labor, and transportation issues.