Robredo surprised over warm public response to presidential bid, unaffected by ‘frontrunner’ | Inquirer News
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Robredo surprised over warm public response to presidential bid, unaffected by ‘frontrunner’

/ 08:35 PM November 15, 2021
Robredo surprised over warm public response to presidential bid, unaffected by ‘frontrunner’

Novo Ecijanos hand pink roses to Vice President Leni Robredo as she passed by the stationary caravan for Leni-Kiko in Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija, on Monday, November 15, 2021. While some brought flowers, other Novo Ecijanos who joined the caravan waved pink balloons and pink lanterns to express their support for VP Leni’s presidential bid in 2022. (Photo by OVP Photographers)

MANILA, Philippines — The consistent warm reception she is getting from the public about her presidential bid still comes as a surprise for Vice President Leni Robredo.

According to her, she did not expect such an overwhelming response, considering her standing in surveys, since October 7 when she announced her intention to run for president. But she also said she is no longer a stranger to uphill battles.

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“Again, pleasant surprise para sa amin kasi kami noong pumasok kami, noong nag-file ako, aware kami kung ano iyong standing. Aware kami noong aking standing. Parang noong 2016 na nag-umpisa tayo sa bottom, na mayroon tayong mga targets na paunti-unti na tumataas iyong ating numbers,” Robredo said during an ambush interview with reporters in Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija, on Monday.

(Again, it’s a pleasant surprise for us because when I entered the race, when I filed my certificate of candidacy, we were aware of our standing. We were aware of my standing. It’s like in 2016 when we started at the bottom of the race, we have targets where we aim to increase, little by little, our numbers.)

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While they were expecting the numbers to eventually multiply, Robredo said they were anticipating it to happen by January or February 2022.

“So noong nakita natin iyong latest surveys, ngayon na pangalawa na ako, napakagandang balita. Napakagandang balita kasi hindi natin inaasahan na this early, this early magna-number two na ako,” she said.

(So when we saw the latest surveys, now that I rank second, it’s good news. It’s good news because we were not expecting that to happen this early, that I would be ranking second.)

“Iyong una, akala namin mga next year pa, mga January o February kasi nag-umpisa nga ako napakababa. Pero the mere fact na pangalawa na ako, siyempre very well taken ng aming campaign team,” she explained.

(Before, we thought that this would happen next year, around January or February because I started out low. But the mere fact that I am second, of course, this is very well taken by our campaign team.)

Robredo was talking about the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey commissioned by the Stratbase ADR Institute, in which she ranked second among preferred presidential candidates for the May 2022 elections. This SWS poll was conducted on the third week of October.

This is a huge development for Robredo’s camp because the survey of another polling firm, Pulse Asia, which was conducted last September 29, ranked her sixth among the presidentiables.

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After announcing her plan to run for president in the upcoming elections, Robredo’s team saw a wave of support, marked by the pink color on social media feeds and during motorcades.

READ: Social media tickled pink by Robredo’s decision 

Although the Vice President’s camp sees among their concerns the still wide lead of rival Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. in surveys, Robredo said she is not bothered by it.

The May 2022 elections would be the second face-off for Robredo and Marcos Jr., who first slugged it out during the 2016 vice presidential bout. Robredo narrowly beat the son of the late dictator President Ferdinand Marcos in that race.

“Iyong sa atin kasi understandable iyong lamang dahil more than six years na naghahanda iyong kalaban natin. Tayo, nag-decide tayo ng 11th hour pero the mere fact na mayroon lang tayong one month since the decision na gumalaw, tapos ganito na iyong tinaas, nagpapakita na kailangang maging very hopeful kasi hindi nga inaasahan iyong pagtaas,” Robredo said.

(For us, the huge lead is understandable because our opponents have been preparing for over six years.  But I only decided on the 11th hour but the mere fact that changes occurred just a month since I decided, it increased by this much, this shows that we should be very hopeful because we didn’t expect it in the first place.)

“Hindi kami gulat—hindi kami gulat sa numbers kasi alam namin kung ano iyong binubuhos para makuha iyong standing ngayon.Pero gaya ng mga nakaraang eleksyon, sobrang aga pa nito. Sobrang aga pa para sabihin na ito na iyong frontrunner kasi alam natin na between now and the official campaign period, iyong galawan ng ranking ay very fluid pa,” she added.

(We weren’t shocked about the numbers because we know what is being poured to get that standing now. But just like the last elections, this is still too early to say that this is already the frontrunner because we know between now and the official campaign period, the movement of rankings remains very fluid.)

The 2022 presidential election is shaping up to be a race between several high-profile aspirants. Aside from Marcos Jr., Senators Panfilo Lacson, Manny Pacquiao, Bong Go, Manila City Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso, as well as retired Armed Forces of the Philippines Lt. Gen. Antonio Parlade also formalized their respective applications to run for president next year,

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