The administrator and the opposition split into 3 ways for the president

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According to the first political positions, the administration and the opposition are divided into three directorates for the presidency of the 2022 elections. But it will not stay that way, because something has to give way.

As the candidate for the presidency of the administration, we find Sara Duterte, Bong Go and Manny Pacquiao. For the opposition: Leni Robredro, Isko Moreno and Ping Lacson.

Various factors will cause them to stay in the race or fall. The plans depend on the support of local kingpins, campaign machines and money, the choice of vice president and senatorial running mates, the platform, the consistent ranking of the polls, and even political convenience.

Current poll favorite Inday Sara has yet to declare his intention. But “Run, Inday, Run” tarpaulins were installed in towns and sites in February. The cost and coverage of several million pesos is prompting politicians to join his movement. Its Davao regional coalition has forged local alliances in Luzon and the Visayas.

With Sara as vice-president, Martin Romualdez from Visayas and Bongbong Marcos or Gilbert Teodoro from Luzon. Any of them will strengthen the geographic tandem of the mayor of Davao City in Mindanao. A complication: Marcos also aspires to be president.

Sara’s father, President Rody Duterte, expresses his dislike of female presidencies. Perhaps this is only to soften the resistance to his questionable HP run. Duterte wants the second-highest position for so-called “unfinished business” and continued immunity from prosecution, including war on drugs murders. Loyalists hijacked the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan in power of officers and long-time members for Duterte. He was then approved as a VP candidate with the free choice of his “presidential” anointed.

Duterte loyalists float the name of non-member Sara as the party’s presidential flag bearer. A progeny-parent tandem for the top two positions is unprecedented in the Philippines where the Constitution prohibits political dynasties. Contemptuous voters can throw out the two Dutertes for good measure. Loyalists present Senator Bong Go as an alternative standard bearer. Posters for Go, Duterte’s longtime assistant, have also proliferated since February Marcos, meanwhile, was invited to PDP-Laban; ironic since it was founded in 1983 to oppose its father-dictator and namesake Ferdinand Marcos.

Senator Manny Pacquiao, from whom the PDP-Laban presidency has been wrested, is expected to strike back. He too has long planned a presidential candidacy; videos heroize her online. Duterte frequently belittles Pacquiao’s leadership ability; at the right time, social media trolls hit the boxing world champion.

Senator Koko Pimentel, executive vice president of PDP-Laban, supports Pacquiao. As heir to the party’s founder and his father, the late Senate President Nene Pimentel, he would have his official accreditation. He had won a Comelec lawsuit for it. He can use it to contest as false any nomination of Duterte’s faithful when submitting candidacies from October 1 to 10.

Opposition factions know that unity is their only chance against Duterte’s combine. Yet they ignore 1Sambayan’s plea for a common list.

Senator Ping Lacson presents his candidacy as a third option, separate from the opposition and the administration. The popularity of its vice-president’s midday television variety show, Senate Speaker Tito Sotto, may boost his campaign. Lacson stubbornly exposes corruption and abuse; but he lost the presidential race once, in 2004.

Duterte’s former ally and ousted president Pantaleon Alvarez offered Lacson the presidency of the Partido Reporma. Sotto is the highest member of the Nationalist Popular Coalition, the second largest party. Together, Lacson and Sotto have the longest experience in the public service. Their senatorial ticket consists of re-voters and returnees, mostly independents and some aligned with the administration.

Vice-President Leni Robredo has yet to choose between the presidency or a local post in Bicol. Her closest collaborators present her as the flag bearer of the opposition. But his Liberal Party is in tatters. This ruling party in 2010-2016 was unable to present a full 12-man senatorial ticket in the 2019 midterm elections; all eight bets lost.

Leni denounces Duterte’s failures: high unemployment, economic slump due to a botched response to the pandemic, rising food prices and acquiescence to China’s maritime aggression. But its amplification of problems is one thing. Apparently, online bashing by the administration’s armies of trolls over the past five years has reduced its popularity. Why she didn’t do anything about it is a big question.

Lacson revealed Leni’s rejection of his oneness formula. Under that program, they would both apply for the presidency, but one whose poll scores subsequently faltered would have to step down and support the other. Fair enough. But Leni reportedly said that once she got in she would finish the race regardless of the outcome.

The popularity of the survey strengthens Isko Moreno. Sensing Congressmen’s penchant for Sara Duterte, the mayor of Manila quit the National Unity Party. He also wants to dissociate himself from the oligarch who finances the NUP. His leap into late Senator Raul Roco’s Aksyon Demokratiko is said to match his position that “the presidency is not inherited.”

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