More millennials voted for Duterte, exit poll shows
MANILA - Presumptive President Rodrigo Duterte got the so-called "youth vote" in the May 9 elections, results of an exit poll showed.
In an opinion piece published on the Philippine Daily Inquirer Saturday, Social Weather Stations (SWS) President Mahar Mangahas said the TV5-SWS Exit Poll showed the 71-year-old Davao City mayor getting more votes from millennials, or those aged 18 to 35 years old.
The survey, conducted among 45,123 voters from 733 voting centers, showed Duterte scoring a 33-point lead over his closest rival, administration candidate Mar Roxas, in ages 18 to 24, and a 26-point lead in ages 25 to 34.
"The younger the voter, the more the appeal of Duterte," Mangahas said.
Duterte had a lead of 14 points in ages 35 to 44, 10 points in ages 45 to 54, and 4 points in ages 55 and up.
At 71, Duterte will be the oldest president when he assumes office on June 30.
DU30: 30 facts about Duterte
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) earlier said the youth vote could be a game-changer in this year's polls. Almost 40 percent of the registered voters in the country are millennials.
READ: Comelec: Youth vote key to 2016 victory
The appeal of the tough-talking, no-nonsense mayor also extends to members of the higher socioeconomic classes as well as those who are educated, according to Mangahas.
Citing the TV5-SWS Exit Poll, Mangahas said Duterte had a lead of 26 points over Roxas in class ABC. He only had a lead of 17 points in class D, and 7 points in class E.
Among college graduates, the PDP-Laban standard bearer had a lead of 28 points. He only had a lead of 8 points among those with some high school, and 7 points among others.
"The higher the class, the more the appeal of Duterte," said Mangahas. "The more the schooling, the more the appeal of Duterte.
Political analyst Julio Teehankee earlier said Duterte's popularity among the country's wealthy and middle classes indicated the emergence of a "counter-elite challenging the old elite."
''The Duterte phenomenon is elite-driven. It is not the revolt of the poor. It is the angry protest of the new middle class: BPO workers, Uber drivers, and OFWs," said Teehankee.
''They are the ones who are taxed the most and financing Daang Matuwid. They are working hard for their families and the country and yet they are the ones who suffer from lack of public service land and air traffic. Breakdown of peace and order corruption, laglag-bala. The poor have their conditional cash transfer fund. The rich have their PPPS. What's there for the middle class? They've been short changed!"
Duterte, who has publicly admitted participating in the execution of criminals in his city, has repeatedly vowed to eradicate crime and drugs in the country in only a span of three to six months.
READ: Why Duterte is popular among wealthy, middle class voters
CATHOLIC, WOMEN VOTERS
Meanwhile, the exit poll showed that Duterte did not dominate his rivals among Catholic voters. He led Roxas by only a below-average 10 points among Catholics, Mangahas said.
Last year, Duterte came under fire for cursing at Pope Francis after he allegedly got caught in a traffic jam during the Catholic leader's visit in the Philippines in January.
He has since apologized, saying he had no intention of disrespecting the Pope.
READ: Duterte plans Vatican visit to apologize to Pope
Among Muslims, on the other hand, Duterte had a lead of 53 points. The Davao City mayor is set to become the first Philippine president from Mindanao.
Duterte led by 70 points among members of the Iglesia ni Cristo (INC), which endorsed his candidacy a few days before the May 9 polls, and by 24 points among other Christians.
A self-confessed womanizer, Duterte also had a low lead among women, only 12 points over Roxas. He had a lead of 22 points among men.
Duterte earned the ire of women's groups last month following his remarks on the rape-slay of an Australian missionary.