Senate President Vicente Sotto III surged past President Rodrigo Duterte in the Pulse Asia September survey on possible vice presidential bets in 2022.
Based on Pulse’s survey, Sotto enjoys the support of 25% of Filipinos, well past Duterte’s 14%. They were trailed by Manila Mayor Isko Moreno with 12%, Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. with 12%, Senator Manny Pacquiao with 7%, and Senator Bong Go with 7%.
The survey was conducted from September 6 to 11, after Sotto and Duterte had declared their intentions to run for vice president.
Sotto expressed his intent to run as early as July 2021, and launched his campaign with his prospective standard bearer, Senator Panfilo Lacson on September 8, right in the middle of Pulse’s survey period.
Duterte, meanwhile, accepted the nomination to run for the vice presidency by the ruling party PDP-Laban in August. Before the survey period, Duterte was already teasing the public about his vice-presidential run.
Sotto’s jump is significant as he has edged Duterte by 11 percentage points. In the previous Pulse Asia survey conducted in June, Sotto landed at third, trailing Moreno and Duterte.
Sotto rose past Duterte and all other candidates with double digits in all surveyed regions, except in Mindanao, where Duterte, Marcos, and Go were the top possible vice presidential bets.
Sotto chairs the national party, the Nationalist People’s Coalition. His prospective standard bearer, Lacson, meanwhile, has been named chairman of the recently revived Partido Reporma. Both parties are set to sign a coalition agreement on Friday, October 1.
Lacson and Sotto, in their campaign launch, made similar promises as Duterte in 2016. They said they would seek to stamp out corruption and crime – but different from how Duterte did it.
Duterte may have also played a role in Sotto’s jump. During Duterte’s final State of the Nation Address in July, Duterte practically endorsed Sotto as he took time in his speech to describe Sotto as a “good man” who “can be a good vice president.”
Despite Sotto’s impressive performance in the vice-presidential poll, Lacson continues to lag behind, receiving only a 6% preference, landing at seventh place among possible presidential bets.
In a statement on Wednesday, a confident Lacson said he was “doing alright.”
“We have our own tracking. We are not even thinking of recalibrating our strategy,” he said. – Rappler.com