Not opposition Vice President Jejomar Binay but Senator Grace Poe is now the strongest opponent of administration standard-bearer Manuel ‘Mar’ Roxas in the 2016 presidential race, according to Senate President Franklin Drilon.
“Mar’s strongest opponent will be Grace,” Drilon said in a cable ANC television interview.
Drilon said Binay’s rating continued to slide, obviously due to the allegations of graft and corruption in connection with the overpriced Makati City Hall Building 2 that Senate has been investigating since last year.
“When you look at surveys, do not look at one survey in isolation. You look at the three or four surveys before that. And when the survey starts going down consistently, that is a danger signal. That unless something happens which will prevent that line from going down, you’re in trouble,” Drilon said.
Drilon also believed that Binay has been abandoned by the so-called “three kings” of the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA), referring to Binay, Senator Juan Ponce Enrile and former President and now Manila Mayor Joseph ‘Erap’ Estrada.
The Senate chief found surprising that Enrile and Estrada raised the hands of vice presidential candidate Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos when Binay has picked Senator Gregorio ‘Gringo’ Honasan II as his running mate.
“That says something I don’t know and I can’t figure it out. Is it a hit on Binay? Remember Binay, Enrile and Estrada are UNA’s three kings. Now there is only one king. They have abandoned Binay,” Enrile said.
As for Liberal Party’s own presidential candidate, Drilon believed that Roxas’ numbers will continue to improve in the upcoming surveys.
“Grace has plateaued a bit. But Mar, he started at four percent but now he’s at 20 or 22 percent. But so his numbers are going up, and that is what is important, when you keep on improving your surveys as you get near to the finish line. That’s very critical,” Drilon said.
Drilon, LP’s vice chairman, said in the end, it will be Poe versus Roxas that will battle it out for the presidency.
He said Roxas can count on LP’s vast machinery all over the country and to the endorsement of President Benigno Aquino III.
“He (Aquino) is the only president for the past five presidencies who has the highest trust rating at this stage of the administration. I have looked at the others and they are much lower,” Drilon said. PNA