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Poe, Villar top survey; Bong Go, Bong Revilla in, but Imee, Bato, Tolentino out of Magic 12

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(Photo from Philippine Star)


QUEZON CITY (PhlTodayUSA) — Reelectionists Senators Mary Grace Poe Llamanzares and Cynthia Villar continued to hold on to the top of winnable senatorial candidates as shown in the latest Social Weather Station (SWS) survey.


And for the first time, former special assistant to the president Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go jumped into the survey's winnable Magic 12, landing in 5th to 6th place pleasing his former boss, President Rodrigo Duterte.


Duterte's other candidates, former Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Ronaldo Bato dela Rosa and former presidential adviser Francis Tolentino, however, did not make it in the Magic 12. Outgoing Ilocos Norte Governor Imee Marcos, whom Duterte had also endorsed, fell to no. 14 in the survey.


In the  survey, Poe garnered 64 percent of voter preference, followed by Villar with 57 percent voter preference.

In the SWS survey conducted from January 23-26, Go made a huge jump from his 15th-16th place ranking in the December 2018 SWS survey to secure a place well within the winning circle, tied with reelectionist Sen. Juan Edgardo "Sonny" Angara.


In the same SWS survey, former senator Manuel "Lito" Lapid  and former senator and now an outgoing Rep. Juliana Pilar "Pia" Cayetano of Taguig City trailed Poe and Villar coming in 3rd and 4th places.


Sen. Lourdes "Nancy" Binay is in seventh place, while former senators Manuel "Mar" Roxas and Ramon "Bong" Revilla Jr., recently cleared of his plunder and graft cases, are tied in the 8th-9th place.


Completing the “Magic 12” are reelectionists Sen. Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III (10th), Sen. Benigno Paolo "Bam" Aquino (11th) and former senator Jose "Jinggoy" Estrada outshining his half-brother, reelectionist Senator Joseph Victor Ejercito.


Aquino previously was no. 14 in the earlier SWS senatoriable survey.


An elated Go immediately thanked the people for their trust and confidence in his capability to serve the nation as a legislator as he vowed to work even harder to present his advocacies to the Filipino people.

“It’s heartwarming to realize you trust my capability and sincerity to serve the country. May this serve as inspiration for us to work harder in delivering to our countrymen the programs we wish to push forward for the benefit and prosperity of every Filipino,” Go said in a statement to media.


“I’d like to change the mindset of people that a simple provincial man working as a staff, unpopular, not an actor, not from a family of politicians can dream of serving others in higher capacity,” he added.

Go also thanked his mentor, President Duterte, for endorsing his candidacy. Go served as assistant to Duterte for many years while he was mayor, vice mayor and congressman and when he became president.


In his visits to various places, Duterte vouched for the character and integrity of his former top aide, stressing that Go is an “extremely honest” man and a dedicated public servant.


“It helped a lot that I got endorsed by President Duterte whom I had served for 20 years and who really knows me well,” he said. “Thank you President Duterte. It only shows our countrymen’s strong belief in the changes you desire.”


But he stressed that his recent rise in the survey means he should work harder and continue the service he is doing.


“This only means we should work harder so we can better serve others. I will go to every corner, to the farthest place and the narrowest alleys just to help those in need most,” he said.


“Just like what I promised you, I will be your bridge to the President, but I also want to be your bridge to real change that can benefit every Filipino,” he added.


Go’s surge in the rating of senatorial candidates came more than a week before the start of the campaign period for national candidates in the 2019 midterm elections.


Go’s legislative agenda prioritizes improved delivery of health services, including the institutionalization of Malasakit Centers across the country.


A Malasakit Center brings together in one room all concerned government agencies such as the Department of Health, Department of Social Welfare and Development, PhilHealth, Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office, to make it easier for poor patients to avail themselves of medical and financial assistance from the government.

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