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Aquino’s Poe option

May 15,2015 - 09:59 AM

Toon_15MAY2015_FRIDAY_renelevera_GRACE POE&PNOY
Reports of President Benigno Aquino III’s conversations with Sen. Grace Poe sent the country’s political analysts and those who indulge in politics in a tizzy over the weekend and it’s quite easy to understand why.
That it came coincidentally not one year ahead of the country’s scheduled national elections is no small matter. Thanks in large part to the verbal battering he continues to receive at the Senate, Vice President Jejomar Binay is forced to travel across the country to win more support for his presidential bid.
And thanks to tri-media, Sen. Grace Poe’s deft and graceful handling of the Senate investigation into the Mamasapano massacre earned her a substantial windfall of good will that may likely translate to votes in whatever national position she will run for in 2016.
President Aquino’s disclosure that the administration Liberal Party (LP) will cast a wider net to include those outside of the party ranks for their standard bearer in 2016 evokes memories of his late mother, president Corazon Aquino, choosing then defense secretary Fidel V. Ramos as her choice for presidential candidate over then Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino (LDP) secretary general, the late House speaker Ramon Mitra.
Aquino’s choice of Ramos stemmed from the then pervasive public perception that Mitra was a “traditional politician” and a TV commercial he made then in which he detailed his poverty-stricken roots didn’t sit well with the electorate, which viewed it as a shameless attempt to earn their sympathy and their vote for the 1992 elections.
In contrast, Ramos’ role as protector of the vulnerable Aquino administration — which survived seven coup attempts — had all but ensured the president’s support which extended all the way to creating a then new Lakas party after Ramos lost the LDP nomination to Mitra.
Like Ramos then, Aquino is banking on Poe’s perceived victory and political capital she gained from those televised Senate hearings to help save and preserve what he described as the LP’s campaign for reforms in governance.
Whether that entails dropping Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas III or not remains to be seen.
Despite his seeming best efforts, Roxas isn’t winning across-the-country support.  Cebu is one of the few that supported his vice presidential bid, though it didn’t prove enough, and it doesn’t help his reputation and image when his broadcaster wife Korina Sanchez goes to his defense, resulting in debates with the likes of CNN host Anderson Cooper and a backlash from social media.
Whatever was discussed during Aquino and Poe’s conversations will be known months from now.
In the meantime, let the Filipinos debate and discuss this latest development and see for themselves whether it is worth supporting.

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