The family of former dictator Ferdinand Marcos enjoyed easy wins in the mid-term elections, with his 83-year-old widow leading the clan’s political charge.
Imelda Marcos captured more than 88 percent of the votes cast on Monday to win a second consecutive term at the House of Representatives representing the family’s northern provincial stronghold. Her daughter, Imee, was elected unopposed in the mid-term elections for a second term as governor of Ilocos Norte province.
Imelda Marcos’s main rival, lawyer Ferdinand Ignacio, conceded the race after capturing about 10 percent of the vote.
“I will congratulate her. There’s no point in sour-graping at this point. This is the essence of democracy,” Ignacio told Agence France-Presse.
Imee Marcos’s cousin, Angelo Barba, completed a family sweep as the uncontested candidate for vice governor, according to the Commission on Elections’ website.
Meanwhile, the late dictator’s son and namesake, Ferdinand Marcos Jr., is half way through a six-year term in the Senate and is widely expected to run for president in 2016.
The family fled to the United States when a military-backed but peaceful uprising ended Ferdinand Marcos’s 20-year rule in 1986.
The dictator, his wife and their cronies were accused of stealing billions of dollars, murdering or jailing thousands of critics, and living in extravagance while the majority of Filipinos endured crushing poverty.
Imelda Marcos’s vast shoe collection, jet-setting lifestyle and other extravagances came to symbolize the excesses of her husband’s rule.
The government has recovered about $4 billion from ill-gotten Marcos assets, but Imelda has always maintained the family did nothing wrong and she has beaten all corruption charges against her.
After the patriarch died in Hawaii in 1989, his wife and children returned to the Philippines to begin rebuilding the family brand from Ilocos Norte.
Ferdinand Marcos Jr. won support from one in three voters during the 2010 elections, giving hope to his mother’s publicly stated ambitions of returning to the presidential palace as “first mother.”