WASHINGTON, DC,  May 15, 2004
-  President Arroyo got the most number of votes from some 6,469 Filipinos in the United States and its territories — except Saipan — who cast their ballots in Monday’s elections.

Mrs. Arroyo received 1,008 votes, followed by Raul Roco, 270; Fernando Poe Jr., 159; Panfilo Lacson, 145; and Eddie Villanueva, 125 votes.

In the vice presidential race, Noli de Castro was leading at 818, followed by Loren Legarda with 577 votes.

Among the senatorial candidates, former tourism secretary Richard Gordon was the topnotcher with 1,194 votes.

He was followed by Manuel Roxas II, 1,190, Alfredo Lim, 1,038; Rodolfo Biazon, 921; Aquilino Pimentel Jr., 903; Robert Barbers, 902; Orlando Mercado, 817; and Miriam Defensor-Santiago, 724 votes.

A total of 10,538 Filipinos in the United States and its territories had registered for the elections, but only 6,469 actually voted.

The votes from Saipan were still being tallied.

Meanwhile, pro-administration Rep. Oscar Rodriguez, who is leading the mayoralty race in San Fernando City in Pampanga, said Mrs. Arroyo is leading in his province with 96,966 votes against the 84,771 of Poe.

"The President has proven that she can win in her own bailiwick because of the strong faith and confidence of Kapampangans on her competence and vision for the country," he said.

In Compostela Valley, Rep. Manuel Zamora, who is winning against his rivals, said Mrs. Arroyo is leading in the province with 47,012 against Poe’s 34,097 votes.

"Our people, mostly farmers, voted for the President as a sign of gratitude and appreciation for supporting them by stabilizing prices of local farm products like copra and banana, and uplifting their lives," he said.

In Baguio City, Rep. Mauricio Domogan, who is the Lakas regional chairman in the Cordillera Autonomous Region, said Mrs. Arroyo won in the city with 32,546 votes as compared to the 17,809 of Poe.

"The President’s good governance and performance (made) people... opt for her," he said. "We cannot gamble the country’s future with an inexperienced Poe."

In Surigao del Sur, Rep. Jesnar Falcon said Mrs. Arroyo is leading in his province with 109,152 votes against Poe’s 63,950.

"We expect the President’s votes to increase once the results from San Miguel with be reflected," he said.

In Cebu City, Rep Antonio Cuenco said Mrs. Arroyo is sure of victory in the city, with 206,696 against Poe’s 50,388.

"Her victory in Cebu City is being replicated in the entire Cebu province, the country’s most vote-rich province," he said.

In Isabela, Rep. Rodolfo Albano said Mrs. Arroyo was leading in the first district with 30,016 votes as compared to the 23,634 of Poe. — With Jose Katigbak

Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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