Senators question SWS poll method

TWO senators who have declared their plan to run for vice president in next year’s elections questioned on Tuesday the methodology used by Social Weather Stations in its latest survey.

Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero said he could not understand why SWS asked survey respondents to to name three candidates when their previous surveys only asked whom the respondent would vote for if the elections were held today.

“Until now, I don’t understand the reason why respondents had to choose three. The fight is one-on-one why choose three?” Escudero asked, explaining that the question had a direct impact on the results and credibility of the survey.

Senator Antonio Trillanes IV also criticized the survey, saying it only gave false hopes to candidates who are lagging behind.

“It gives false hopes to those who are ranking high if the question is choose one only. So it appears there that all three have chances so they are fooling these candidates. It has no use at all except for propaganda purposes,” Trillanes said.

“You can spin it like Sec. Mar Roxas. They can make it appear that they are neck-to-neck, that he had overtaken Binay. But in actual elections, he said there is no such thing as third choice for President,” Trillanes added.

He said the methodology used by SWS in this survey covering the period of Sept. 2 to 5 is not valid if it’s going to be used as a basis for voters preference.

But SWS official Leo Laroza said the poll was intended to give the respondents freedom to list their presidential candidates as they desire, without feeding them names or forcing them to give three.

“We just wanted to give more chances for people to give more names, not just one. So that’s basically the principle behind it,” Laroza said in an interview with the ABS-CBN News Channel.

“From our data, the plurality of 45 percent of respondents gave only one name. While 31 percent gave two names and only 17 percent gave three names,” Laroza said, adding that the SWS has been using the methodology since the 2007 elections.

He also added that the recent poll gives candidates valuable idea on how they fare among voters in terms of leadership and popularity.

“It only shows how much support base you have among the people and how much you are being remembered by the people when it comes to the question of who are the three best leaders would be their choice to succeed the President,” Laroza said.


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