THE Liberal Party (LP) has a so-called “Plan B” to junk its vice presidential candidate Leni Robredo if she does not improve her numbers, according to respected political analyst Malou Tiquia, a volunteer for the Camarines Sur representative.
In her Facebook page, Tiquia claimed she got the information from “two different but credible sources.”
“I have been informed of the potential junking of Leni Robredo” if her numbers don’t pick up. “C’mon! From 0 to 19 percent was not an easy climb. Yes, she is plateauing but that is because there is not enough support to get her message out via air,” she said.
Tiquia also described the plan as “cruel” because Robredo “remains loyal to a fault to LP.”
“The person said I should not get mad because this is just politics. Damn you are right! This is politics and Leni will win because she is better than your Plan B,” she added.
Tiquia said her informant hinted that Robredo might not be able to “stop [Ferdinand] Marcos [Jr.]” and that a “he” candidate may do so, in apparent reference to Sen. Francis Escudero, the running mate of Sen. Grace Poe.
Marcos tied with Escudero in the latest survey.
“I said to the person, ‘you don’t do that to Leni.’ To which the response was, ‘can she stop Marcos? Well, another candidate said he can’. Damn and ‘that easy, you junk her? What kind of a party are you? What kind of a leader do you have?’” Tiquia asked.
“So I further asked, ‘if we get her to 25 percent, will you stop with your plan?’ The person was quiet. I ended the conversation with: ‘You don’t junk Leni, you give her the wherewithal to fight’,” Tiquia further narrated.
Palace spokesman Edwin Lacierda shrugged off Tiquia’s remarks, noting that the latter is rooting for a different tandem.
“Is it true that she was a consultant for [Vice President Jejomar] Binay in his terrible debate performance and that she is rooting for Binay as President and Leni for VP? If so, I am not surprised at her efforts to wormtongue a different tandem considering the debacle of Binay last Sunday,” the official said.
In movie parlance, “worm tongue,” a character in the Lord of The Rings series, is a cunning “troll” who for some reason can manipulate people to evil ends with their voice.
“But here are the facts, Mar and Leni have been going out on a tandem campaign and both have been reinforcing Daang Matuwid and each other in their speeches. So why listen to her when all you need to watch and listen to are Mar and Leni on the campaign trail, right?” Lacierda emphasized.
In an exclusive published by The Manila Times in January, it was reported that the LP, including President Benigno Aquino 3rd, is considering shifting its support to the tandem of Poe and Escudero if the team-up of Manuel “Mar” Roxas 2nd and Robredo will not take off in the next surveys.
Robredo on Friday expressed confidence that she can beat her rivals.
“Sanay ako sa ganitong laban sa kongreso, kalaban ko yung pinakamakapangyarihang pulitiko sa amin. Mas dehado ako noon, mas wala akong kakampi noon, pero nakaya ko [I can beat them. I am used to this kind of fight; I went up against the most powerful politician in our province. I was even more unlikely to win at that time, I hardly had allies, but I did it],” Robredo told reporters after she and Roxas graced a Gathering of Friends and Allies in Pagadian City.
She was referring to her 2013 congressional run when she defeated Nelly Villafuerte by 70,000 votes. Nelly is the wife of former Camarines Sur Gov. Luis Villafuerte whose clan has ruled Camarines Sur since 1978.
“It’s not true that I am being junked. It would be better if you ask the LP, but I am confident that it won’t happen. They already placed their bet on me even if my ratings were so low, how much more now that my ratings are rising. They are giving me all the support that I need that I don’t have a reason to doubt them,” Robredo pointed out.
“It is expected that my rivals are more popular because they are Senators who already ran nationwide campaigns, but I am confident that with effort, sweat and hard work, it’s not impossible to beat them,” she added.
Ballsy Aquino-Cruz, the sister of the President, said Friday that Aquino won’t drop his support to Robredo even if she is trailing in surveys.
“Napakalabo niyang mangyari. Hindi ko alam pero wala akong kaba na mananalo si Leni kasi unang una, talagang kahanga hanga naman siya ([That’s too far fetched. I have no doubt that Leni will win because first of all, she is admirable],” Ballsy said.
“There’s no reason to doubt [my brother]because Leni did not force herself into this. They even had to convince her,” she added.
“Yes, she is not that well known, but once you get to know her story, she will impress you. She just needs time. The campaign is just getting started, and we want to make her known to our people.”