Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao’s Senate bid got a boost when the latest Pulse Asia survey showed him back in the “Magic 12”.
The February 16-27 survey on 5,200 respondents, which was released on Wednesday, March 9, showed Pacquiao with 33.2 percent, good for No. 9.
Pacquiao, the incumbent representative of Sarangani, slid to No. 14 in the last survey from a high of No. 8 after he issued a statement in February against members of the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) community who, he said, were “worse than animals” and opposed same-sex unions.
Pacquiao also lost his endorsement deal with athletic gear giant Nike and his promoter Bob Arum agreed with the sports brand’s decision.
Pacquiao is facing disqualification over the alleged “free advertising” he was getting from the promotion of his fight against American Timothy Bradley at Las Vegas on April 9.
Former Representative Walden Bello of the Akbayan Partylist and former Senator Rene Saguisag filed separate complaints before the Commission on Elections (Comelec) asking the poll body to ensure that Pacquiao was not violating Election Laws.
Pacquiao, through his lawyer Antonio Carlos Bautista, submitted to the Comelec his comment, saying that the alleged promotion falls within the time limit for senatorial candidates.
The Comelec has yet to decide on Pacquiao’s case.