Final, official count: Villar 1st, Binay 12th in Senate race
MANILA, Philippines — Re-electionist Sen. Cynthia Villar topped the 2019 senatorial race dominated by administration-backed candidates as the Commission on Elections (Comelec) finished the counting of all votes for the midterm elections.
The Comelec, sitting as the National Board of Canvassers (NBOC), finished the tally of the certificates of canvass (COC) early Wednesday, more than a week after the polling on May 13.
In the complete and official tally, Villar, who was endorsed by the administration Hugpong ng Pagbabago party (HNP), got a total of 25,283,727 votes.
Villar has a 3,253,939-vote lead over re-electionist Grace Poe, who, running as an independent candidate, garnered 22,029,788 votes.
On third is former Special Assistant to the President Christopher “Bong” Go, who ran under the ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban). Go got 20,657,702 votes, followed by HNP-endorsed Taguig Rep. Pia Cayetano, who got 19,789,019 votes.
Trailing Cayetano is former Bureau of Corrections chief Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa, another PDP-Laban candidate, who got 19,004,225 votes, followed by HNP-endorsed re-electionist Sonny Angara, who finished sixth with 18,161,862 votes.
Actor Lito Lapid clinched his Senate comeback with 16,965,464 votes, ahead of Ilocos Norte Gov. Imee Marcos, another HNP candidate, who secured the eighth spot with 15,882,628, votes.
PDP-Laban candidate Francis Tolentino, former presidential political adviser, made it in the ninth place with 15,510,026 votes, with party-mate re-electionist Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III trailing with 14,668,665 votes.
HNP-backed Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. also made a successful Senate return as he placed 11th with 14,624,445 votes, while re-electionist Nancy Binay completed the so-called Magic 12 after garnering 14,504,936 votes.
Sitting outside the winning circle are re-electionists JV Ejercito and Bam Aquino, with 14,313,727 votes, and 14,114,923 votes, respectively.
On Tuesday, the Comelec waited for the arrival of the final two Certificates of Canvass (COCs) from Saudia Arabia and Washington DC in the United States, which were left unaccounted for due to the late transmission of results.
The poll body canvassed the Saudi COC at noon on Tuesday, but it only received the COC from the US after waiting for more than 11 hours.
The poll body wrapped up the canvassing of votes exactly a week after it convened to officially tally votes from the May 13 midterm elections.
The Comelec had earlier expected to proclaim winning Senators and party-lists on Tuesday. But the delay in the arrival of the COCs prompted the poll body to reschedule it for Wednesday.
(Editor: Alexander T. Magno)
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