Duterte widens lead by 12% in April 12-17 Pulse Asia survey

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/24 April) – Presidential frontrunner Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte widened his lead by 12 percentage points with 34% of the voters nationwide choosing him if elections were held today, compared with 22% for Senator Grace Poe in the Pulse Asia Survey for ABS-CBN on April 12 to 17, the survey ending just as the outrage over his controversial rape remarks was beginning.

The survey results, released by Pulse Asia on Sunday morning, April 24, showed Vice President Jejomar Binay and Senator Mar Roxas were statistically tied at 19% and 18%, respectively while Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago got only 2% .

Duterte gained two percentage points more from the previous Pulse Asia survey for ABS-CBN conducted on April 5 to 10 and released on April 19, from 32% to 34% in this latest survey and widened his lead against Poe from seven percentage points in the previous survey to 12 in this latest survey.

Nationwide, only Duterte and Santiago gained percentage points from the previous survey to the April 12 to 17 survey – Duterte with two percentage points (32% to 34%) and Santiago with one percentage point (1% to 2%).

Poe and Binay lost several percentage points (3 percentage points for Poe from 25% to 22%) and Binay 1 percentage point from 20% to 19% while Roxas was steady at 18%.

Up and up

Duterte lost one percentage point in the Visayas (29% to 28%), was steady in the Balance of Luzon at 20%, but gained in all other categories: 11 percentage points more in the National Capital Region (NCR or Metro Manila), from 32% in the previous survey to 43%; four percentage points more in Mindanao, from 57% to 61%; 10 percentage points more in socio-economic classes ABC from 37% to 47%; and one percentage point more in Class D from 32% to 33%; and three percentage points from 31% 34% in Class E.

In the NCR, Duterte topped with 43%, almost double Poe’s 22%, more than twice Binay’s 19% and over four times more than Roxas’ 11%.

In the Balance of Luzon, where Duterte is weakest, Poe leads with 30% followed by Binay’s 26% , Duterte’s 20%, Roxas’ 14% and Santiago’s 2%.

In the Visayas, Roxas leads with 34% followed by Duterte’s 28%, Poe’2 20%, Binay’s 15% and Santiago’s 1%. Roxas, Santiago and Poe hail from the Visayas. Duterte was born in Maasin, Leyte in the Visayas in 1945 but his family migrated to Mindanao in 1948.

In Mindanao, where Duterte’s widest lead is, six out of ten Mindanawons are voting for him, based on the survey results of 61% against Roxas’ 17%, Poe’s 10%, Binay’s 8% and Santiago’s 1%.

Duterte also leads in all socio-economic classes. In Class ABC, Duterte’s lead is more than thrice his rivals – 47% followed by the three who are statistically tied — Binay and Roxas with 15% each, and Poe with 14% — and Santiago with 3%.

In Class D, he leads with 33%, 10 percentage points more than Poe’s 23%. Binay got 20%, Roxas 18% and Santiago 2%.

In Class E, Duterte again leads with 34% or 11 percentage points more than Poe’s 23%, Roxas’ 22%, Binay’s 17% and Santiago’s 1%.

Rape remarks

Political analysts said Duterte’s rape remarks could affect his lead in the next survey. The latest Pulse Asia Survey, however, ended April 17 just as the video clip on the rape joke had gone viral.

The next surveys after April 17 will determine if his remarks did affect his ratings. Another survey the public is looking forward to is after the last Presidential Debate on April 24.

A video clip from Duterte’s April 12 speech at the Amoranto Stadium in Quezon City, went viral and sparked outrage not only from his critics and the undecided voters but also from among his supporters.

Duterte said that upon seeing the body of an Australian missionary killed during a hostage-taking in Davao City in August 1989, he said in Fiipino, “Son…b.. ch, what a pity. What came to my mind was, they raped her, lined up for her. I was angry because she was raped. But she was so beautiful, the mayor should have been first. What a pity.”

Amid calls for him to apologize, Duterte told television reporters in Davao City afternoon of April 17 that he did not care if his remarks would cost him the presidency as he refused to apologize for uttering what he described was “gutter language” in his Amoranto speech.

In Bacolod City on April 18, he insisted he would not apologize but morning of April 19, the Duterte-Cayetano camp in an attempt to control the damage, sent media outlets a five-paragraph statement purportedly coming from Duterte, apologizing for what he said and that “there was no intention of disrespecting our women and those who have been victims of this horrible crime. Sometimes my mouth can get the better of me.”

CNN Philippines, in a report from Iloilo City on April 19 titled “Duterte’s ‘apology’ creates confusion,” said Duterte told reporters there that “he knows nothing about this statement.”

The April 19 statement e-mailed by the Duterte-Cayetano camp was not posted on Duterte’s Facebook account. But his videotaped interview in Davao City on April 17 was posted.

The five Presidential candidates are attending the third and last Presidential debate on Sunday evening, April 24, at he University of Pangasinan. (Carolyn O. Arguillas/ MindaNews)