Although the 2022 presidential election marketing campaign is but to start, the machinations and drama are nicely underway.
Richard Heydarian, professor of historical past and political science on the Philippines’ Polytechnic University, says there isn’t any clear frontrunner. “It is going to be highly, highly competitive,” he added.
The Philippines has just one spherical of voting, not like many nations resembling France, the place there’s a second poll between the 2 hottest candidates. This implies that whoever is in entrance on the finish of counting will turn out to be president — regardless of how small their complete share of votes.
In a good race, the prize may go to anybody. And the stakes are excessive.
With China and the US more and more treating the Indo-Pacific as a staging floor for his or her international showdown, the Philippines will seemingly come underneath rising financial and geopolitical stress, notably as a claimant to a part of the South China Sea.
Not solely that, however his daughter — Davao Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio — nonetheless has a month to determine if she’ll run for president instead candidate.
Duterte has a private incentive to retain some management over the longer term authorities: he is going through an investigation by the International Criminal Court into his struggle on medication and his successor may affect how a lot entry they get to the Philippines.
“We’re at the edge of a cliff … whoever wins will determine whether we’ll have rule of law, whether our economy can grow, whether we can survive the virus, whether our society can heal,” she stated.
The dictator’s son
Marcos Jr., identified colloquially as “Bongbong,” introduced he would run for president within the 2022 election, pitching himself as a unifying candidate who may carry the nation collectively after the ravages of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The Marcoses remain scot-free from jail, they haven’t returned all the money that they got from the nation’s coffers, and now they are making a comeback for the highest position in the land. That is just plain, shameless gall,” Cristina Palabay of rights group Karapatan informed Reuters.
Duterte has not been ashamed to tie himself to the Marcos household. There have been even ideas he would possibly be part of Marcos Jr.’s ticket as candidate for vp. “That’s the plan!” Marcos Jr. stated Wednesday, in line with ABS-CBN.
Ressa stated Duterte’s recognition within the south of the Philippines, mixed with Marcos’ recognition within the north, would create a formidable drive.
Heydarian added the Marcos household had “grassroots support, resources and message discipline,” however their historical past wouldn’t play nicely with a inhabitants involved about corruption.
“The issue of corruption is very, very sensitive for a lot of people,” he stated.
Pacquiao’s ability as a boxer is unquestionable. After a 26-year profession, he’s thought of one of many biggest boxers of all time, the one man to carry world titles in eight completely different divisions.
But the 42-year-old’s ability as a politician is way much less clear — and one thing he should show if he’s going to achieve success when he runs for president.
But Heydarian stated since he joined the senate, Pacquiao’s time in workplace has been underwhelming. “He’s entering this race as someone whose mantle of statesmanship is still under question. He didn’t have the most impressive performance as senator,” he added.
Rather than working for vp first, to point out he was severe in regards to the position, Pacquiao has jumped straight to the highest job — and Heydarian stated that may be a bit “early” for folks. Still, his recognition with the nation’s poor may make him a contender.
Ressa stated the Philippines will want pressing motion to get well from the Duterte years and the Covid-19 pandemic, and questioned whether or not Pacquiao had the political coalition or the governing expertise to make it occur.
“Whoever will become president next will have real problems to deal with, and they’re going to have to have competent people to deal with it,” she stated.
Pacquiao is not the one rags-to-riches story of the 2022 marketing campaign — nor the one star.
In reality, Moreno’s actual title is Francisco Domagoso — Isko Moreno is his stage title.
Using his fame as a stepping stone, Moreno moved into politics in 1998 as a metropolis counselor in Manila earlier than being elected vice mayor in 2007, after which mayor in 2019.
Just two years after his win, he’s aiming to steer your complete nation. Like Duterte, Moreno is a populist, Heydarian stated, however one in all a unique stripe.
“(He) represents what I call ‘polite populism’: cost-free, family orientated, even pious kind of rhetoric,” he stated, including that Moreno trumpets centrist and even at instances progressive insurance policies.
The Vice President
At the opposite finish of the spectrum from Marcos is incumbent Vice President Robredo.
Accompanied by her two daughters, Robredo on Thursday known as for the nation to observe her and assist “ensure a future of equal opportunities.”
Heydarian identified that Robredo is presently working fifth within the polls regardless of her nationwide fame — behind Marcos, Pacquiao and Moreno.
However he stated the Vice President had a large community of supporters throughout the nation from her time in workplace. “We saw in the 2016 (Vice Presidential) election she was able to turn things around against all odds and against a very competitive candidate,” Heydarian added.
The shadow of Duterte
While the nation’s consideration has largely been mounted on the candidates who’ve already declared, none of them are main current polls, in line with Heydarian.
He stated the most well-liked contender is Duterte-Carpio, Duterte’s daughter.
As of Friday, Duterte-Carpio had not declared her candidacy however as a substitute has filed paperwork to run once more for Davao mayor. On Monday, her spokesman stated she had “no intention” of taking the management of her father’s get together.
That’s precisely what her father did in 2016.
Heydarian stated Duterte-Carpio is not just like the President in some ways — she welcomes the opinion of specialists and takes thought of choices, not like her impulsive father.
But critics have seen her potential candidacy for president as one other approach for Duterte to carry sway over the Philippines after he leaves energy.
And that’s assuming her father would not change his thoughts about working for vp. Ressa stated she would not belief Duterte’s assertion that he would retire from politics — he stated the identical factor in 2016 after which ran for the nation’s highest workplace.
Whoever finally ends up taking energy within the Philippines, Ressa stated they may inherit a rustic “in a far worse place” than Duterte did.
“The legacy of Duterte is the breakdown of the different branches of government and the corruption of the different weak institutions,” she stated.
“We were just at the point where our institutions were starting to solidify … the last five years have really taken those dreams and dashed them.”