February 1, 2023

If there is one thing that this pandemic could not dampen in us, it is our love for politics. Despite the continued lockdowns and quarantines, we continue to maintain a vibrant attitude towards the everyday development that is happening in the world of politics.
Call it fanaticism or blind fervor, but the lure of politics looms large in our lives. What we do and what we anticipate is almost always associated with Philippine politics. It is what makes or unmakes our nation. To cite an example, the vaccine is supposed to be administered during the second or third week of February but is nowhere to be seen or felt, leaving everybody asking: “Where are the vaccines?” is the result of bad politics. However, not all is bad about politics. There is the good side that stimulates conversation and debate among us like: “Who should be our next President?”
Whether we like it or not, we cannot avoid broaching the idea of who should become our next leaders because the intentions of the “wannabes” are already all over.
Two weeks ago, a group of Cebuanos launched the “Manny Pacquiao for President Movement.” Ditto in Davao City where people rallied to convince Sarah Duterte to run for president in the forthcoming national elections. Vice Pres. Leni Robredo, too, has her own movement although it is less vociferous than that of the first two. Grace Poe is high on the totem pole among presidentiables, according to a research by OCTA.
Of course, those who have been mentioned as possible for the highest office in the land have denied any intention to seek the position. They have one common answer: “It is too early to tell.” Early or not, it is titillating us no end, especially so since those who are being mentioned are probably the best and worst choices that we have.
Pacquiao, for instance, has been groomed into being the next president. From the moment he started knocking out Barrera, Morales, Marquez, Cotto, etc., his fans adored him like a god and the only way they see fit to repay him is to elect him as president. If not for his age, he could have been the president six years back. Sure, there are negative factors working against him like his level of education, his mental acuity and his qualification, but as you very well know, in Philippine politics, these matters are second fiddle only to popularity and money. Pacquiao has lots of those.
As for Sara, anything that has a Duterte attached to it is a best seller. That is her advantage. Her father is the only president who maintains a high rating notwithstanding all the controversies and curses surrounding his rule. This is what makes her a dangerous opponent for any other candidate. She is so much like Pres. Duterte that those who perceive that the country will need another one like him to reign will surely vote for her. The clamor for her to run has reached the farthest corner of the country.
Poe is long overdue to be the next female president. She ran and acquitted herself pretty well during the past election. Ironically, her presidential ambition was snagged because Duterte stalled her. As a senator, she is among the most prolific. The intelligent sector of our society is wont to endorse her. Will she be successful this time? We shall know next year.
Robredo is a hard sell for a president. Her “tutti frutti” image is not doing her any good. Add to this is her being the head of the Liberal Party which has lost its luster. But who knows? She might spring a surprise and outlast all other candidates.
Whatever and whoever decides to cast his or her luck in the next national election, it is something to look forward to. And unlike the vaccine that is not sure when it will arrive, the next presidential elections is a certainty.