MOST of the logical expectations arising from the victory of presumptive President-elect Duterte haven’t been realized. What gives? Sure, I know that politics is the art of the possible but this is crazy! I might as well unexpect the expected.
Almost all consider the votes for Duterte as “protest votes” against President BS Aquino The Last, that they don’t want a continuation of the hypocritical “daang matuwid” of the administration. The ongoing count, assuming that they’re correct, doesn’t bear out this logical conclusion.
If the electorate wants to throw to the dustbin all traces of the “daang matuwid,” why did Mar Roxas overtake early frontrunner Grace Poe and place second, although a distant one, to Duterte? And why is the administration’s vice presidential candidate Leni Robredo leading Sen. Bongbong Marcos in the unofficial count?
Those against BS Aquino were expected to vote against his personal candidates. So, when he said that he would never accept a Marcos victory, he was virtually assuring the election of his favorite pet-peeve. His opposition had become the rallying cry for Marcos; he had become the chief campaigner of Marcos. That was the popular expectation. What happened?
Bongbong Marcos was supported by many religious organizations, notably by the Iglesia ni Cristo. Then, there was the AlDuB or Alyansang Duterte-Bongbong. Many leaders of presidential candidates other than Duterte had also openly supported Marcos. On the other hand, only die-hard Liberals and their drumbeaters were all-out for Robredo. So, the logical expectation was that Robredo wouldn’t make it. Should we now also “unexpect” this logical expectation?
Ah, but the Marcos camp isn’t prepared to throw in the towel and they’re not to blame. There’s a cloud of doubt over the algorithmic increase in Robredo’s votes and in the decrease of Marcos’s and other rivals’ votes. Tong Payumo, a supporter of Robredo, said that she should allow a recount instead of calling for evidence to show cheating. Tong, who’s retired from politics, said that Robredo should take heed from the declaration of Duterte that he wouldn’t accept the presidency if there was cheating in his favor.
Tong said it’s to Robredo’s best interest that she be declared winner without any doubt on how she made it. Will she be agreeable to erasing any doubt? Well, that’s to be expected if she’s indeed following a straight path. Or, should we include this in unexpecting the expected?
The case of Robredo is not all there is to it! Senate President Franklin M. Drilon (FMD), a die-hard Aquino follower, is set to be the top vote-getter among the senatorial candidates. Why, his votes might even turn out to be the highest-ever in the history of Philippine senatorial elections. He’s one of the leading voices for continuity of “daang matuwid.” Was he exempted from the discerned clamor of the people for change?
Or, was something done in the electoral process to mute or even over-ride the popular will of the people? Let’s wait for developments.
The Senate presidency
Speaking of FMD (Franklin M. Drilon, not Foot and Mouth Disease), he’ll have to do a lot of scrambling if he wants to retain the Senate presidency. His only potential rival now is Sen. Koko Pimentel, what with Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano assured of a Cabinet post one year after the election.
Incidentally, the division in the Senate is between majority and minority, the membership of which doesn’t follow party lines. There have been many instances where political parties have members in both majority and minority.
The division is very simple – those who vote for the winning nominee for Senate President comprise the majority and those for the loser, the minority. Oh, I take that back. It’s not always that simple.
In November 2008, Sen. Lito Lapid raised his hand in the election of Juan Ponce Enrile as Senate President vice Sen. Manny Villar. That made him a member of the majority. The following day, however, he said he thought the Senate Secretary was merely calling the role so he raised his hand. He told reporters that he would be joining the minority in the company of his fellow Wednesday Club members Manny Villar, Kiko Pangilinan and Joker Arroyo.
Later came JPE’s announcement that Lapid, then in Pampanga, was with the majority and that he would retain the chairmanship of the Senate Committee on Games and Amusement, which has jurisdiction over issues on jueteng. Pangilinan doubted JPE’s claim, saying Lapid had told the Wednesday Club that he wouldn’t mind losing the committee and stay with the minority.
Well, the next session day, Lapid erased all doubts by joining the majority and keeping his priced panel.