[OPINION] Campus mock polls show how different the youth vote is
I recently defended my thesis on social media, the Filipino youth, and political participation during the 2016 elections. It emphasizes the significance of youth political participation in flexing their political muscles and expressing their potilical opinions on social media during one of, if not the most, contentious elections in the Philippines.
A total of 24,730,013 or 45.49% of registered voters belonged to the youth age group during the 2016 elections. In numbers alone, it is no doubt that the youth vote is important. In effect, young people's political choices may predict the next leaders who in turn will run the country's future.
The story of the 2019 elections is no different as it's a reminder of the importance of youth vote. This is why I did an analysis of the results of mock elections conducted in 7 universities in the country, based on posts from various official Facebook pages of student organizations. (READ: Youth urged to vote in 2019 elections)
Here are some takeaways we can get from the mock elections conducted in the University of the Philippines (UP) Manila, Philippine Normal University (PNU), UP Baguio, University of San Carlos (USC), UP Diliman, University of Santo Tomas (UST)- College of Accountancy, and the Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP):
- University students really vote differently from the rest of the population. It appears that they enjoy being anti-status quo, and they appreciate platforms than mere entertainment.
- Compared to the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey conducted from March 28 to 31, mock election results in universities give hope for Chel Diokno, Neri Colmenares, Samira Gutoc, Florin Hilbay, and Erin Tañada. It is also clear that university students do not support administration bets Bong Go, Bong Revilla, Bato dela Rosa, Lito Lapid, and Jinggoy Estrada, who are part of the top 12 senators based on the national survey conducted by SWS. (READ: IN NUMBERS: Registered voters for the May 2019 elections)
- Overall, it appears that students from the 7 universities will probably vote for Otso Diretso candidates rather than for Hugpong ng Pagbabago bets. Chel Diokno's appeal among university students is impressive, while Leody de Guzman's aspiration is not impossible given his standing.
- The top 5 senators are Chel Diokno, Neri Colmenares, Samira Gutoc, Grace Poe, and Bam Aquino. The rest of the senators who made it to the top 12 are Florin Hilbay, Erin Tañada, Pia Cayetano, Cynthia Villar, Mar Roxas, Koko Pimentel, and Sonny Angara.
- Chel Diokno is the top senator among all universities except for UP Diliman, PNU, and PUP where Neri Colmenares and Grace Poe topped the race.
- Erin Tañada is the second most favorite senator in PUP, while Romy Macalintal who graduated from PUP was not included in the top senators of PUP students.
- JV Ejercito's name only appeared in PUP's mock election results. He is the top 8 senator among PUP students.
- UP Manila, UP Baguio, and UST have the same top 3 senators, namely Chel Diokno, Neri Colmenares, and Samira Gutoc, while UP Diliman included Florin Hilbay in their top 3 senators. (READ: IN NUMBERS: Candidates for Senate 2019)
- Similarly, UP Diliman's mock election results showed no Pia Cayetano, Cynthia Villar, and Sonny Angara who are all alumni of the university. (READ: How 7 reelectionist senators voted on key issues, bills)
- UST's mock election showed the nearest overall result, where 10 out of 12 of its top senators made it to the overall top 12 senators. Among the top 12 senators of UST students, only Willie Ong and Gary Alejano did not make it to the overall top 12 senators.
- No Bato dela Rosa, Imee Marcos, Lito Lapid, Bong Go, Bong Revilla, and Jingoy Estrada in all the top senators of university students.
- No Imee Marcos in the top 12 senators in the mock elections conducted in 7 universities and in the latest SWS survey.
- Interestingly, Florin Hilbay and Mar Roxas are not in the top candidates of PNU students. Erin Tañada needs to campaign more in UP Diliman and PNU. PUP students did not include Mar Roxas and Sonny Angara in their top senators.
- Surprisingly, Leody de Guzman, Gary Alejano, and Serge Osmeña are part of the magic 15.
Analyzing the voting patterns of Filipino university students tells us 3 central ideas.
First, it tells us about young people's opinions on who among the administration and opposition bets would be included in their ballots. Second, it reveals how students from different universities choose their candidates. And third, it shows how, based on the results of a prominent research firm's latest survey, the youth vote is completely different. – Rappler.com
Jerome Papa Lucas, 28, is a social media strategist and influencer. He holds a bachelor's degree in Communication Research from the Polytechnic University of the Philippines and Master of Arts in Philippine Studies from the University of the Philippines Diliman.
What are the results in your campus mock polls? Help us crowdsource results of campus mock polls by sharing them with MovePH, Rappler's civic engagement arm, using the hashtag #TheLeaderIWant.