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Crowd estimates during political rallies are a “poor” foundation for poll results.

MANILA – A political analyst stated Tuesday that basing a candidate’s viability on crowd estimates at campaign rallies is “wrong.”

This comes after candidate campaign sorties for the May 9 national and municipal elections drew a large crowd despite the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

When it comes to estimating the outcomes of this year’s elections, OCTA Research fellow Ranjit Rye, who is also a political science professor at the University of the Philippines, said pre-election surveys are more “reliable” and “correct.”

“Ang claro sa ating mga resulta, ‘yung rally for electoral results po’ hindi ho magandang basehan ho. (Based on the [partial election] results, it is apparent that the number of rally attendants is not a good basis for electoral outcomes.) Google trends are also not an appropriate starting point because they aren’t designed to replace public opinion polls),” Rye remarked during the “Hatol ng Bayan 2022” event “PTV-4, a state-run channel, broadcasted the program.

The findings of the incomplete and unofficial vote count for this year’s elections, according to Rye, reflect the “scientifically-conducted” public opinion surveys on the Philippine elections.

He did agree, though, that some people have questioned the accuracy of the pre-election polls.

“Iyan, namin ang naging experience. In social media, talagang grabe ang batikos. At the very least, masaya kami na-validate ‘yung science ha. (We have had this experience.) On social media, we’ve been chastised. We are pleased that [the partial election results] supported the science [of polling]). We sincerely hope that people will begin to see the value and precision of scientifically performed surveys, as well as the importance and dependability of scientifically conducted surveys “Rye remarked.

Former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Davao City Mayor Sara “Inday” Duterte, who both dominated pre-election polls and the partial and unofficial tally of ballots, were highlighted by Rye as an example of a UniTeam presidential-vice presidential combination.

He claims that OCTA Research’s pre-election polls, as well as those conducted by commercial polling organizations Pulse Asia and the Social Weather Stations, “match” the results of the preliminary tally.

“When you look at OCTA Research’s estimations of survey results from two weeks ago, it practically mimics what happened last May 9,” Rye added. “Our polls are not only accurate, but also quite dependable. In this way, na-validate ‘yung (it validated) survey science.”

While the election results are still unofficial, Rye believes Marcos and Duterte are now “projected winners” in the presidential and vice presidential races.

“You know, we’re still canvassing our votes at the national level, particularly for president and vice president. While the procedure has not yet been completed, it is likely that we already know the projected victors, considering that more than 95 percent of the [votes] have been processed. And former senator Bongbong Marcos is likely to run for president and vice president, si (it is) Mayor Sara Duterte “he remarked.

Accept election results

Regardless of political disagreements, Rye expressed confidence that the public will accept the election results.

Rye stated that the elections should bring the Filipino people together rather than divide them.

“People must consider the value of democracy and accept the results of this election cycle’s elections, not just for the president and vice president, but for all positions,” he stated.

He hoped Filipinos would stay focused on their goal of progressing the country.

“If we want to promote the agenda of change and progress for our country, we must continue to work together in communities and in collaboration with the corporate sector and government. So, ‘yun ho ang phone number natin. (That’s our decision.) It’s critical that we come together and that we think beyond our parties and candidates to what’s best for the community and the country “Rye remarked.

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