MANILA, Philippines – Re-electionist senators topped a pre-election survey on voter preference less than a year before the May 2013 elections.
A survey by research firm TNS Philippines as of June 2012 showed Senators Francis “Chiz” Escudero, Alan Peter Cayetano and Loren Legarda topping a list of 79 potential candidates regardless of region and socio-economic class.
The survey also showed that most voters expect senatorial bets to craft laws that will make education accessible to all, lower the prices of goods and medicines, ensure adequate food supply and provide water to all households.
The TNS Pre-Election Study was conducted last June 20-30, 2012 through face-to-face interviews with 1,500 respondents who are 18 years old and above, currently registered voters and will probably vote in the 2013 elections.
The nationwide survey has an expected margin of error of +/- 2.53%-points at the 95% confidence level and covers all socio-economic classes from the National Capital Region, North-Central Luzon, South Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
TNS Philippines Managing Director Gary de Ocampo said the survey helps aspiring candidates in the planning and development of their campaign strategies by measuring voter commitment to a candidate, assessment of a candidate’s performance, and identifying issues that enhance voter retention and attract new voters.
“Our research provides valuable insights into the voting population, including an in-depth understanding of the public’s mindset, expectations and aspirations with regard to their candidate selection,” he said in a statement.
TNS Philippines senior research manager Joel Flores said the survey presented to respondents a list of 60 attributes as a way to gauge what the voters are looking for in candidates.
Flores said the TNS study’s added value is that it measures the perceived performance of each candidate per attribute, and maps out his strengths and weaknesses. He noted that some attributes deemed important to voters may not have an impact in increasing votes.
“The study gives a prioritization framework for each candidate on which issues have higher impact on voting preference. Some candidates might just be maintaining their image without adding to their votes,” he said.
Flores said the TNS study utilizes a proprietary business solution called Political TRI*M, which measures the level of voter retention that a candidate has and helps the candidate or political party understand the different components of voters’ choice.
Candidates are graded according to Satisfaction (Perceived ability of the candidate to perform the role), Recommendation (Recommending the candidate to a third person), Preference (Likelihood to vote for the candidate), Advantage (Perceived advantages of the candidate in relation to other candidates), and Trust (Perceived honesty and integrity of the candidate).
Flores said some candidates might have a high Trust score to a voter but would still not be voted because of the advantage of other candidates.
“The data might show that that candidate is OK but he is not getting the votes kasi dito papasok yung awareness. Hindi pa masyado kilala. You have to convert the trust into votes,” he said.