The gubernatorial race in Bohol in recent history has never been this tightly-fought with a fierce battle between two political giants, a former Cabinet secretary and a House deputy speaker.
Gubernatorial bet LeoncioEvasco, Jr. who got a 35% voters’ preference in the Bohol Poll (February survey) rose to 51% to make a statistical tie with his opponent, Rep. Art Yap who pooled 44% as compared to his previous mark of 53%.
The survey was conducted between April 20 to May 7, 2019.
Given the 896,000 registered voters and using the 2016 national voter’s percentage turnout of 80%, the difference could numerically be about 50,000 votes (rounded) based on the Holy Name University-Center for Research and Publication (HNU-CRP) pre-election survey.
Although Evasco has numerical superiority, it is deemed in forecasting science as a statistical tie since as the survey had a margin of error of + – 5 percentage points.
The latest poll lent credence to the popular assumption that the gubernatorial fight is too close to conclusively predict as to who will be elected as the next governor of Bohol after Gov. Edgar Chatto will end his nine-year term as chief executive of the province. At best, they could display some patterns.
Evasco led in the first and second districts while Yap maintained his hold in the district (3rd) where he served as a congressman for nine years.
LOGISTICS VERSUS POPULARITY?
This tight gubernatorial race as viewed by non-partisan observers could be a battle between high logistics and popularity.
Evasco is perceived to be more popular than Yap enjoying the support of an overwhelmingly popular Pres. Rodrigo Duterte who flew to Bohol last Wednesday to endorse the Evasco-Abapo tandem in their rally held in Garcia Hernandez.
Political dopesters interpreted the choice of Garcia-Hernandez (which is part of the 3rd district) as the launching pad of Duterte’s endorsement of Evasco-Abapo as meant to partly decimate the hold of Yap over his congressional district of nine years.
However, the logistical support seems to favor Yap whose political machinery can be considered tested over the years especially with the support of his running mate, Rep. Rene Relampagos who has served both as congressman and governor of the province. This collaboration is being backed up by the last-term Gov. Chatto making it a proverbial province-wide”tested” political machinery when taken together.
Will popularity and logistics translate to actual votes tomorrow?
The latest survey showing Evasco ahead of Yap was conducted by HNU, the same institution which conducted an earlier survey which supporters of Evasco earlier labelled as a “fake survey” over social media. The latest survey released last Friday showing Evasco with higher marks was understandably already praised and endorsed by Evasco supporters.
OTHER SURVEY RESULTS
Meanwhile, Yap’s running mate, last-termer Rep. Rene Relampagos was statistically quite far ahead of Board Member Tomas Abapo, Jr.
Relampagos pooled 55% against Abapo’s 38%. Relampagos led in the first and third districts while Abapo led by 2% in the second district.
In the first district congressional race, Gov.Chatto garnered 71% against Dan Lim’s 25% while in re-electionist Rep. ArisAumentado led in the second district against Board Member Aga Avenido, 83% – 16%.
Retired Judge Fernando led among the four congressional bets in the 3rd district with 30%. He was followed by Vice Gov. DionisioBalite, 23%; Board Member Alexi Tutor22% and former Mayor Che-cheToribio 21%.
In the provincial board member slates, Damalerio led in the first district with 44% followed by Masamayor 32% and Tongco and Lagunay 31% ‘ Cabalit,30%; Tirol 25%; Sevilla, 24% Ontong 9%; Rebusa and Tocmo, 7%; Somontan, 6%; Mesina 5%.
In the second district are Puracan, 44%, Auxtero and Garcia tied at 41%, Boniel, 37%; Gementiza 26%; Besas and Tirol tied 24%; Abella 16%.
In the third district: Balite, 65%; Bautista, 56%; Jala and Tirol tied at 33; Bonita 26%; Binlod 20%; Espejo and Castanares 18%; Vergara, 16% Villafuerte, 14%; Bongolto and Vallejos 6%.