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During the 2013 Local Elections we conducted poll surveys in majority of the towns of Bohol.  Since the surveys were commissioned by a particular group for their own use, the results could not be publicly published.

Among the questions asked were the desired persona or traits, characteristics, and behavior of candidates.  We also asked the preferred campaign styles of the Boholano voters.

We do not expect the Boholano voters’ behavior to change much for the 2016 election.  The following results could help much the candidates and the voters.


Desired Persona

Eleven (11) traits were listed and the respondents were allowed to check as many as they like.  There were 500 samples taken from every town that we surveyed.  The following results are the average for all the towns.  The list herewith given is from highest to lowest.

  • Matinabángon (Helpful) – 83.35%. ) Maayo og batasan (Good manner) – 80%.  3.) Tim-os! Ligdong (Honest) – 62.45%.  4.) Adunay Kabangkaágan (Educated) – 55.85%.  5.) Adunay Plataporma (Has a platform) – 49.6%.  6.) Maayo mosulti (Good speaker) – 49.57%.  7.) Makahátag og Industriya sa Lungsod (Can given industry to the town) – 32.35%.  8.) Mohatag kanákò og kwarta/panábang (Will give me money or help) – 28.50%. 9.) Akong Kabánay (My relative) – 12.48%.  10.) Sakop sa akong partído (Member of my political party) – 12.30%. 11.) Gipaluyohan sa kadagkóan sa nasod (Supported by national personalities) – 9.48%.

The first three (3) – helpfulness, good manner, and honesty, are personal traits.  It is clear that politics in Bohol is based on personalities and not on issues and platforms of governance.  However there are still 49.6% of the voters who want to know the platform of the candidate.

The problem with “Matinabangon = Helpful” isthat there is 28.50% who desires to be given money of help.  If you cannot give them money then you are not matinabángon.  Your rating will decrease from 83.35% to 54.85%.

In former times having relatives, a political party, and backers from the national level was a very great advantage of being elected.  It is no longer the case today.

If the same behavior of the voters will still obtain during the May 2016 election, Sec. Mar Roxas could not rely on the endorsement of Pres. P-Noy because the effect will only be 9.48%.


What Will Get You Elected?


The candidate must have the desired persona.  However, all candidates will try to satisfy the desired persona.  So a candidate will not be sure of winning.  So what will get you elected?

The answer to this question is the result of the survey question, “Kun hatagan ka og kwarta aron pabotaron sa kandidato nga naghatag, unsay imong buháton?” Seventy one percent (71%) answered, “Modáwat og mo botar = Will accept and vote”.

Bear in mine that only 28.50% desires for a candidate that will give money.  The other 71.5% will still vote without being given money (inangayán). If the contest is not close, a candidate can afford not to give the inangayán.  However, if the contest is close enough, the 28.50% is already a huge swing vote.


So by force of necessity, the candidate will give the inangayan. When it is given, it will balloon to 71% or a previously uncommitted 42.5% will join the fray.

During the 2013 election there was a satisfaction limit.  The uncommitted 42.5% will vote for the first candidate that can give P500 because they viewed the inangayan as “per diem” for voting.


Campaign Styles

The campaign styles desired by the voters were: 1. Pagpadayag sa Plataporma (Information of platform) – 69.3%.  2.) Hangyo nga tabangan (Ask for help) – 47.5%.  3.) Pakigpúlong/Diskúrso (Speech) – 43.85%.  4. Pulong-pulong (Caucus) – 34.05%.  5. Positibo nga publikar (Positive advertisement) – 32.45%. 6.) Sangpit sa Kabánay (Call on relatives) – 27.9%.  7.) Magbúhat og organisasyon sa kampanya (Organize a campaign group) – 24.45%.  8.) Mohatag og Inangayan (Will give token money) – 15.3%.  9.) Manghátag og polyeto (Will give leaflets and handbills) – 13.28%.  10.) Negatibo nga publikar sa kaatbang (Negative publication) – 8.1%  11.) Atake/Bomba sa kaátbang (Attack the opposing candidate) – 5.4%

The most desired style is to inform the public of one’s platform.  Bear in mind that it is only No. 5 in the desired persona of a candidate.  If you are the candidate or the manager of the candidate, you will have a difficulty how to reconcile the desired campaign style to the desired persona of a candidate.

The candidate must be careful because campaign rallies are just considered as entertainment shows.  For example, attacks by speech or publication on the opposing candidate are good entertainment but actually the effect is opposite.  The listener will no longer vote for the “attacker”.  Bombastic speeches are good entertainment but it does not does not convince Boholano voters to vote.

If the “attacked” candidate is a good actor he can use the style “Hangyò nga tabangan” coupled with crying in public.  It is an effective antidote for the opponent’s money because you are appealing to the emotion.  Appeal to the emotion always beat an appeal to the intellect.

It is the reason why Sen. Grace Poe tops the poll surveys.  She has an appeal to the emotion of the Filipinos. (By Jes Tirol)

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