This coming May, millions of Filipinos will troupe to their respective voting precincts to cast their votes in what is becoming a very confusing presidential election. As the day of the voting gets nearer, I have been asked whom I will vote for (or for whom I will vote, to satisfy the English purists–I think it’s grammatically problematic, either way). My quick answer: I don’t know yet, but I definitely know whom I will not vote.
Here’s a quick rundown on what I think of the present crop of candidates:
- Manny Villar. I will not vote for him. Two reasons: First, his campaign jingle song is downright irritable. I used to think it was impossible for him to swim in a sea of garbage until I did a little research. Still, assuming it was possible to swim in a sea of garbage, why would you want to? Second, if Winnie Monsod’s expose explanation regarding the C5 hullabaloo doesn’t convince you to at least question Villar’s claims of sincerity and his motives for running, there’s something seriously wrong with you.
- Gilbert Teodoro. From what I hear, Teodoro is a very good candidate. The only thing going against him (and I use the word “only” carefully) is his recognized connection with the Arroyo administration. I get the feeling that even though a lot of citizens may want him to win, his victory will mean a light tap on the wrist for Mrs. Arroyo (whom more and more people seem to hate). Another way of putting it is, should he become president, the chances of charging Arroyo in court for her alleged crimes will become nil.
- Jamby Madrigal. No. No comment necessary, either.
- Eddie Villanueva. See Jamby Madrigal.
- Joseph Estrada. This is merely my opinion, but I stress it fully. Anyone who believes that Joseph Estrada should be sent back to Malacanang on the shoulders of the masses is a total IDIOT. (Explanations towards the end of this post.)
- Richard Gordon. I like him. He has proven himself with management of Subic, his WOW Philippines (which put our country back on the map, in a positive way) and with his term as a senator and his chairmanship of the Philippine National Red Cross. In previous elections I voted for people who didn’t win. So maybe Gordon won’t win. That would be a great loss.
- Benigno Aquino III. You know, I am seriously considering him. More and more as the elections draw near. I am only worried about one thing: Should he win, are we electing someone mainly on the strength of that person’s lineage? (Maybe Conrado de Quiros can help me out on this one.) What makes me hesitate boting for Aquino? Kris. (I don’t need to explain that one.)
- The Kandidate from KBL. Who is he? Don’t know. Don’t want to know. Don’t care.
Before I end this blog, allow me to explain my comment regarding Estrada.
I did not vote for Estrada when he first ran for president. I did (and still do) however recognize the fact that this particular candidate has come up from mayor, to senator, to vice-president, and therefore has the benefits of experience on his side, at the very least.
Another thing going for him was that, unlike other presidents recently, his mandate was without question. It was really vox populi that won him the presidency. That is a big plus in this country. Having a clear mandate means you can do your job as president without people questioning your stay in Malacanang every twenty minutes. My favorite former president, Fidel Ramos, didn’t have such a clear mandate. He had to contend with Miriam Defensor Santiago’s barbs throughout his term.
Aside from the mandate, he had the people’s trust. His “Walang kaibi-kaibigan at walang kamag-anak-anak” statement drew thunderous applause during his inaugural speech. People had high hopes for change. People wanted him (whether rightly or wrongly) to utilize his tough guy image to fight corruption and bring financial blessings to the poor.
Sadly he blew it. Everybody now knows his nightly escapades of drinking and gambling, and his under the table deals, among other things. And his current statements, particularly about how everything wasn’t his fault but the fault of the people around him proves that he should never have been voted president in the first place. The man has no sense of responsibility. He was president. Everything really was his fault.
So, whose name will I write down come May 10, 2010 ? That’s the sixty-four dollar (or roughly 2,915.20 in Philippine Pesos) question isn’t it.
I will write either Aquino, Teodoro or Gordon.