Marcos sustains lead in latest ABS-CBN survey

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Senator and leading VP candidate Bongbong Marcos Jr. File Photo

MANILA (UPDATED) - Senator Ferdinand 'Bongbong' Marcos Jr. sustained his solo lead in the vice-presidential race based on the ABS-CBN survey by Pulse Asia taken 3 weeks before the May 9 elections.

The poll was conducted from April 12-17 nationwide on a sample size of 4,000 respondents and an error margin of +/-1.5.

Nationwide, 29% picked Marcos, 23% picked Camarines Sur Rep. Leni Robredo, and 20% picked Senator Chiz Escudero; 16% picked Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, 4% picked Senator Gringo Honasan, while 3% picked Senator Antonio Trillanes.

A total of 450 respondents were polled in the National Capital Region (NCR) from April 12-17 with an error margin of +/-4.6. In Balance Luzon, 925 were polled in North and Central Luzon from April 12-17 with an error margin of +/-3.2, while 875 were polled in Southern Luzon from April 12-16 with an error margin of +/-3.3.

A total of 850 were polled in the Visayas from April 12-16 with an error margin of +/-3.4, while 900 were polled in Mindanao from April 12-16 with an error margin of +/-3.3.

Marcos led NCR (43%) and Balance Luzon (36%) by wide margins, Robredo continued to dominate Visayas (35%), while Cayetano, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte’s running mate, dominated Mindanao (32%)

Marcos ruled classes ABC and the biggest voting bloc D (39% and 31%), while Robredo took Class E (26%).

Escudero was the top second choice for Vice President.

Compared to the previous survey, Marcos and Robredo saw slight increases in their scores, while Escudero shed 3 points.

Cayetano was statistically the same as in the previous survey, while Honasan and Trillanes kept their previous scores.

Marcos continues to do well despite continuing criticism over the martial law government of his late father and namesake.

READ: Still no sorry from Bongbong Marcos for Martial Law abuses

Marcos and Honasan skipped the second vice-presidential debate last April 17.

READ: Rivals roast VP debate absentee Bongbong

Pulse Asia Research Director Ana Tabunda said "Marcos gained slightly despite the April 10 debate and despite PCGG's [Presidential Commission on Good Government] reaction to an apparently inaccurate statement he made regarding compensation for martial law victims."

As for Robredo, Tabunda said: "Robredo increased slightly also. She has been increasing slowly since December [2015], after filing her candidacy. It is possible voters are increasingly getting to hear about her plans, her messaging and are positively responding to it."

De La Salle University (DLSU) Prof. Richard Heydarian said the vice-presidential race is "essentially between Marcos and Robredo."

He said things can still change if Robredo "doubles down on her ground war and presents herself as not only a vote against Marcos' return to office but also as a possible counter-balance to a Duterte presidency."

He added that "Robredo seems to be eating into the Escudero base, while Marcos can still lose votes to Cayetano, who is using a similar decisive leadership mantra."