Now that Rodrigo Duterte is out of the Presidential race if we take his announcement lately seriously that he does not covet the Presidency, the former’s supporters are now looking for an alternative to root for in the 2016 Presidential election outside the three candidates who already declared their candidacy.
A veteran of the Presidential war just made an announcement today October 13, 2015 that she is joining the 2016 Presidential race. The candidate is none other than the fiery Sen. Miriam Santiago of Iloilo.
However, Senator Miriam Santiago has not made any announcement of her Vice Presidential candidate, but hinted she is joining forces with a candidate who has declared his candidacy earlier.
As a believer of the advocacy of Senator Bongbong Marcos, I would like to make an argument in his behalf why the Santiago-Marcos tandem is a formidable force to reckon with in the 2016 Presidential election. Let me tell you why.
Santiago-Marcos tandem could unite the Visayas voters
The two candidates have a strong base in the Visayas. Senator Miriam Santiago hails from Iloilo and she can easily snatch the votes from the clutches of Mar Roxas now that she is joining the Presidential race. The Western Visayas region would prefer someone who speaks their dialect. Not sure about Mar who grew up in Metro Manila.
Bongbong Marcos as I’ve said will be the sentimental favorite in Eastern Visayas particularly in Leyte. Of course, the Warays of Samar will go for the son of Imelda Marcos. The Cebuano votes could go either way to other candidates, but the two candidates from the Visayas has the edge considering that they will be representing the Visayan Islands. The last Bisayan President was Pres. Garcia from Bohol and that was in the 1960’s.
Western Visayas alone has almost 4 million registered voters in 2010. Eastern Visasyas is smaller at around 3 million registered voters in 2010. Central Visayas has more or less 4 million registered voters, but this figure was based in 2010.
Santiago-Marcos tandem has the edge in the Mindanao
Mindanao is largely Cebuano speaking except in the Muslim-dominated areas in Mindanao. The plus factor for the tandem is the fact that Mindanao has a huge number of Ilonggo and Ilocano speaking residents. And if all things are equal, the two have the edge in getting their votes since these two ethnic groups have a strong sense of loyalty to their kababayans.
In addition, let us take into consideration the promise of Mayor Rodrigo Duterte to Bongbong Marcos earlier, that he will support the latter in his Vice-Presidential bid. I am hopeful, Duterte’s followers will take the lead from him and vote for the two candidates on election day.
Santiago-Marcos tandem will take the Ilocano votes
Senator Juan Ponce Enrile said that the Ilocano votes will likely go to Bongbong Marcos since he is the only Ilocano running for VP. Likewise, the Ilocanos will write down the name of Senator Santiago on election day since Marcos will ask his fellow Ilocanos to vote for her too. The Solid North is around 5 million votes. So this is nothing to sneeze at.
Santiago-Marcos tandem could be the first Bisayan tandem in Malacanang
This scenario could be a very tempting for the people of Visayas to resist of having two candidates representing the interest of the islands. For a long time, the seat of power is held by the people of Luzon and it would be a breath of fresh air to see the country being represented by two personalities that traces their roots in the Central Philippines.
Even the Mindanaons will feel pride that their interest will be closer to home since Visayas is ethnically and geographically closer to Mindanao. Meanwhile. Bongbong Marcos will take the cudgels for Luzon.
Santiago-Marcos tandem could be the underdog in Metro Manila
Imelda Marcos was once the Governor of Metro Manila and it’s no secret that the former did many projects in the slums of Metro Manila particularly in the City of Manila. Millions of votes could go to the Santiago-Marcos tandem. Sen. Miriam Santiago has a huge following in Metro Manila as well, particularly from the youth sector so the two could easily corner a big chunk of the votes.
Santiago-Marcos tandem is a formidable alliance of two tested politicians
Senator Miriam Santiago is a fiery woman and she can inspire the people to scale any mountains en route to the promised land. In terms of providing an inspiring leadership, there is no doubt she has the respect of the young people today, which by the way forms the larger part of our work force. Her extensive experience as a trial judge could come in handy in introducing reforms in our justice system. This is one of the reasons why our countrymen is not happy with how the country is moving forward due to our bankrupt justice system.
Meanwhile, Bongbong Marcos could come in and help Miriam Santiago in solving the many problems our country are facing, especially in the areas of infrastructure and attracting investors to the country. The guy has proven himself as Governor of Ilocos Norte by solving their energy problems as well as increasing their agricultural output by helping the farmers in the areas of technology and financing. He was also instrumental in opening Ilocos to foreign visitors by making it easier for tourist to visit Ilocos in the 1990’s.
Santiago-Marcos tandem would provide an intelligent leadership in the country’s foreign policy
Miriam Santiago is knowledgeable in law matters. In fact, she served as a trial judge before government service plucked her out from her job. She was supposed to act as a judge in the International Criminal Court, but health issues prevented her from leaving the country. Her long experience in government service and knowledge about law matters could pose a headache to any countries we have issues in our sovereignty. Having Santiago at the helm in our dispute with other claimants in the Sprtaly Islands could prove a formidable opponent to Beijing. And this a relief from the 6 years of an Aquino government that is clueless how to deal with China.
In summary, the Santiago-Marcos tandem is an intriguing partnership. Santiago is a brilliant and fearless yet volatile leader while Bongbong Marcos proves to be a methodical and statistics cruncher type of guy. He can be the perfect compliment to the fiery Santigo and could prove to be the steady presence in a Santiago Presidency.
What do you think about this tandem?