A tearful Senator Richard Gordon kickstarted his 2010 presidential bid with the launching of a movement that advocates "transformative politics."
The movement, called Bagumbayan, has a pending application with the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to be recognized as a political party, and to eventually become the vehicle for Gordon's candidacy.
This early, however, Bagumbayan President Leon Herrera said they are supporting Gordon for president.
"We are for him, if he decides to run," he said. "Anybody who is for change is welcome to join us."
Herrera was a classmate of Gordon in Ateneo de Manila University in the 1960's, and has supported the presidential aspirant's political career from the time Gordon ran for mayor of Olongapo.
Gordon cried as he went on stage for his speech. He spoke of the need to abandon the "transactional politics" of the country's "corrupt leaders."
"Not only are they corrupt, but they also promote corruption," he said, but did not name names.
TV ads hit
Gordon also took potshots at some presidentiables and their TV advertisements.
"Change ourselves first, before we change our leaders," Gordon said.
"Mahirap pero hindi yan nakukuha sa gimik na para sa mahirap o sa papadyak padyak," he said during the launching ceremony, which the group also referred to as a national convention.
Bagumbayan also paid tribute to Filipinos who have made an impact locally and worldwide.
Among those mentioned were education advocate, Gawad Eugenio Lopez awardee and "CNN Hero" Efren Peñaflorida, IBF and IBO flyweight titleholder Nonito Donaire, Subic volunteer and entrepreneur Dennis Mendiola, and vocalist Arnel Pineda of the American rock band Journey.
Earlier in the day, Gordon laid wreaths at the monuments of Jose Rizal and Lapu-lapu at the nearby Luneta Park, whose name Gordon wants reverted to the original Bagumbayan.
At the end of the convention, group leaders announced that contributions to Bagumbayan reached 17 million pesos.