Presidential candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and running mate Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte (File photo)

MANILA – Presidential candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and running mate Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte are still the Filipino people's top choice as the country's next president and vice president based on the latest survey results of Pulse Asia Research, Inc.

According to Pulse Asia's latest Pulso ng Bayan pre-electoral national survey conducted from Feb. 18 to 23, Marcos solidified his lead by posting a 60 percent voter preference, pulling ahead of his closest rival by a 45 percent lead margin.

Way behind Marcos are Vice President Leni Robredo, who posted 15 percent, followed by Isko Domagoso with 10 percent, Manny Pacquiao with 8 percent, and Ping Lacson with 2 percent.

Other presidential aspirants Faisal Mangondato earned 0.4 percent, Bukluran ng Manggagawang Pilipino (BMP) chairperson Leodegario de Guzman (0.1 percent), and Dr. Jose Montemayor Jr. (0.01 percent).

Former presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella and former Department of National Defense (DND) secretary Norberto Gonzales receive essentially no support from the country’s electorate, according to Pulse Asia.

“The rest of likely voters are still undecided about their choice for president in May 2022 (3 percent), refuse to identify their preferred presidential bet (0.4 percent), or are not inclined to vote for any candidate for the post (1 percent),” it added.

The Pulse Asia survey also showed Marcos’ continued dominance in all major voting areas, where he even gained more support in some locations.

In the National Capital Region (NCR), he posted a 66 percent voter preference, a jump of 9 percent from 57 percent in January of this year.

Marcos' voter preference of 68 percent in Mindanao also showed a 2 percent increase, up from 66 percent in January 2022.

Meanwhile, Marcos’ voter preference in other areas remained ironclad, with 58 percent in Balance Luzon and 53 percent in Mindanao.

According to Marcos’ camp, the Pulse Asia survey results confirmed that the “Solid North” voting bloc remains united behind the presidential bid of Marcos.

Marcos posted 74 percent in Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), 82 percent in Ilocos Region (Region 1), and 86 percent in Cagayan Valley (Region 2). On the other hand, Robredo only had 1 percent in CAR, 7 percent in Region 1, and 6 percent in Region 2.

In a statement, Marcos’ spokesperson Vic Rodriguez thanked the Filipino people “for their unwavering trust in the leadership capabilities and competence” of Marcos “to lead us through this most challenging period of our history.”

“The result of the Pulse Asia survey has again debunked the fake narrative being forced by some small segment of our society on the current sentiments and vote preference of us, Filipinos,” he said. “While some of them may claim that they are winning in ‘Twitter’ and ‘Google’ searches, frontrunner Bongbong Marcos is winning the battle with the Filipino people.”

Sara gets 53 percent voter preference

Majority of the country’s likely voters are inclined to elect Duterte as the next vice president, garnering 53 percent voter preference.

Senate President Vicente Sotto III got the highest support of 24 percent followed by Robredo’s running mate Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan with 11 percent, Dr. Willie Ong (6 percent), Buhay Party-list Rep. Lito Atienza (1 percent), Manny Lopez, and Walden Bello (0.1 percent each), Carlos Serapio (0.01 percent), and Rizalito David who did not receive support from the respondents.

Duterte garnered registered voter preference of 82 percent in Mindanao and 48 percent in NCR, 41 percent in Balance of Luzon, and 51 percent in the Visayas.

Meanwhile, broadcaster Raffy Tulfo is still the top choice for the Senate with 66.9 percent voter preference followed by former Senator Loren Legarda (58.9 percent), former Public Works Secretary Mark Villar (56.2 percent), Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri (50.5 percent), and former Senator Chiz Escudero (49.8 percent).

Completing the top 12 of the senatorial race were actor Robin Padilla (47 percent), former Vice President Jejomar Binay (46 percent), Senator Sherwin Gatchalian (45 percent), Senator Joel Villanueva (42 percent), former Senator Jinggoy Estrada (39 percent), former Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista (33 percent), Senator Risa Hontiveros (32 percent), and former Senator Joseph Victor "JV" Ejercito (32 percent).

Pulse Asia Research said it undertakes pre-election surveys on its own “without any party singularly commissioning the research effort.”

A total of 2,400 adult respondents participated in the face-to-face interviews conducted by Pulse Asia.

Results of the survey have a ±2 percent error margin at the 95 percent confidence level. (PNA)