Binay to Belmonte: What's premature?

by Jorge Cariño, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 17 2014 07:07 PM | Updated as of Mar 18 2014 03:07 AM

MANILA - Vice-President Jejomar Binay on Monday shrugged off criticisms made by House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. regarding his bid for the presidency in 2016.

Belmonte was earlier quoted as criticizing Binay's "haste for the presidency," and asked him why he is rushing his Palace bid.

Belmonte reportedly said Binay's early declaration is a "tactical error" that his rivals may exploit.

Binay said he is not offended by Belmonte's statement.

"That's part of the game, that's Philippine politics," he said.

The Vice-President said he knew from the start when he entered politics that one should not be onion-skinned to unfavorable comments.

"What is premature?" Binay said in response to Belmonte's statements.

Binay earlier said he is reaching out to more possible candidates in the 2016 Senate race after failing to complete a 12-man lineup in last year's mid-term polls.

He has invited boxing champ and Sarangani congressman Manny Pacquiao to join the senatorial lineup of his new political party.

Pacquiao recently told ABS-CBN he is not sure whether he will run for the Senate.

Binay said he is hoping to complete his senatorial line-up by next year.

He is forming a new political party and leaving the PDP-Laban due to alleged factionalism.