Camarines Sur Rep. Leni Robredo of Camarines Sur on Friday called on Sen. Grace Poe, pre-election presidential preference survey frontrunner, to soften up and agree to become Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas 2nd’s running mate in next year’s elections.
“Gusto ko sana na isa lang ang administration ticket. Bakit pa tayo maghihiwa-hiwalay kung pareho lamang ang ating sinusulong? Patuloy pa rin ang pakikipag-usap kay Senator Grace Poe. Hindi pa rin ako nawawalan ng pag-asa [I hope that we could all be together under one ticket. Why do we have go separate ways when we are pushing for the same goal? The talks with Sen. Grace Poe are still ongoing so I am not giving up on that yet],” Robredo told reporters.
Widow of former Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo, she is rumored to be running for senator under the Liberal Party (LP).
She belied reports that the LP is considering her to become Roxas’ running mate should Poe refuse to soften up on her political ambition.
“That’s far-fetched. We haven’t talked about it yet. I only knew of it from the media. We are yet to sit on that. What I am considering is a Senate bid. That is the only thing within my sphere,” Robredo, a lawyer, clarified.
Poe also on Friday thanked President Benigno Aquino 3rd for considering her among those who can continue his vision for daang matuwid (straight path) as she extended her best wishes to Roxas.
“I assure President Aquino that I will continue to walk the daang matuwid, because I believe it will be made more meaningful if more people continue the journey, wherever they may be and in whatever role they play,” her statement, which was sent out immediately after the President delivered his endorsement speech, read.
Poe ended her statement by giving her best wishes to Roxas and punctuated with a call for an “open discussion of issues” when the campaign for the 2016 elections starts.
“I recognize Secretary Roxas has decided to offer himself for higher office, and I wish him well. I am hopeful that the 2016 election campaign will be one of open discussion of issues and proposed programs of government that will build on what President Aquino has started. This way, the Filipino people can arrive at a clear choice on Election Day,” she said.
Poe, whose deft handling of the Senate hearing on the Mamasapano incident helped pull her popularity rating up, was reportedly being wooed by the President to give way to Roxas and be his running mate in next year’s elections.
Roxas, who was originally in the running for the presidency in the 2010 elections, withdrew his bid in favor of Aquino and slid down to be the latter’s running mate but he lost to Jejomar Binay.
Poe, an independent, was a guest candidate of the Liberal Party-led coalition in the 2013 senatorial elections.
She is leading in pre-election presidential preference surveys, followed by Vice President Binay with Roxas at third.
Sen. Francis Escudero, who had declared his intention to be Poe’s running mate, said he “respects and understands”Aquino’s “difficult” decision.