Manny Pacquiao recently announced his intention to run for a Senate seat. His desire to run for a higher office has been the subject of speculation for years. He tried to downplay it in the past, but after doing well in the surveys, it was enough to embolden Congressman Pacquiao. But he is not getting my vote. Let me tell you why!
The Senate is not the best training ground for a job in Malacanang
Bob Arum has always said that Manny Pacquiao will make a good President. This is not a far-fetched idea. Manny listens to Bob Arum. In fact, long before Manny Pacquiao made a public announcement to run for Congress in 2010, Arum already told the public before Manny.
If Manny Pacquiao wants to be an effective President, an executive position like running a city or a province would serve him well to know the rudiments of running a country later. Running a province is like running a small state. In the United States, the best training ground for Presidents is running a State. Obama and George Bush were the only exception in the recent history among US Presidents. Ronald Reagan was a long-term governor of California before he made a run for the White House just like Bill Clinton of Arkansas and George W. Bush of Texas.
However, I am reserving my opinion until I see his performance as Governor should he take this route to Malacanang.
Manny Pacquiao cannot serve two masters at the same time.
In his latest interviews with the press, Manny Pacquiao remains ambivalent when to retire from boxing. Why? The reason is obvious. The fame and money that boxing provides to the guy is at a different level. If surveys are to be believed, a senate seat is already in the bag. The voters need a full-time Senator, not a part-time Senator.
Manny Pacquiao is a ghost legislator. You cannot expect him to do better in the Senate either.
He is a ghost legislator because you can rarely see him in the house of Congress. During his first term in Congress, Pacquiao had a 58 percent attendance and it was not that bad. But his second term was atrocious; he attended session only four times in 2014. If you showed up only 4 times in a year, what can we expect from him as a legislator? The job of a Congressman is to legislate laws. In fairness, he authored 15 bills, but none made it past the committee level. He co-authored 27 others, mostly promoting social welfare and sports-related causes as reported in ABS-CBN.
In a report posted in the Inquirer, he defended his absenteeism and said,
I don’t want to boast about what I have done in my district, but you can see my accomplishments in my district. It’s important that you help your constituents and not just sit in Congress,” he said. “[In Congress] all you do is file bills, but the bills have no benefits to the people.
If Pacquiao really wants to help the people as a politician, as I’ve stated above, a Governor seat suits him well since his style of politics is active engagement with the people on the ground. He disdains legislative work.
In my opinion, the reasons cited above might not be enough to dissuade his legion of fans to vote for Manny Pacquiao. Instead, the voters will give him a Senate seat. Sadly, the majority of the voters makes decisions based on their emotions and not on the grounds of the qualifications of the candidate.
Do you think Manny Pacquiao will run for the Presidency in the future? If so, do you agree with the author that as Governor, this will prepare Manny for the job of the President someday?