The presidential race – a mere 30 months away – has begun in earnest among three contenders: Vice President Jejomar Binay, Department of Interior and Local Governments Mar Roxas and Senator Bongbong Marcos.
All three were on the storm-devastated island of Leyte just this Sunday November 17, separately giving aid and consolation to victims of Typhoon Yolanda or Haiyan.
All three are keenly aware that a crisis can make or break a politician.
All three gave different reasons for being on this Eastern Visayas island of Leyte, which is home to nearly a million voters. Roxas was there to check up on the relief efforts of local government units (LGUs)since he’s the Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Governments (DILG). Binay wanted to survey the housing needs of the homeless residents since he heads the state housing agencies. And Marcos was there as a relative of a prominent clan in Leyte – the Romualdez political dynasty now headed by his own mother, the “Rose of Tacloban”, Imelda Romualdez-Marcos.
By this point some readers will probably be shaking their heads, saying I shouldn’t be writing this piece so soon after the tragedy. That this is politicizing a disaster.
The fact is, almost every move of these officials has political calculation behind it This is true not just of this country but of every nation. To deny it is to bury our heads in the sand and to fail to understand how things work.
For these three politicians, the stakes are high – no less than the presidency, which controls much of the government bureaucracy and money. As we have learned over the last half century, a bad choice for that post can give the country much grief.
So even if you absolutely HATE politics, you might as well understand what is happening. You might as well start weighing the candidates on hand – Binay, Roxas and Marcos. And if all of them are found wanting, you can start looking around and say – anybody else?
Disclaimer: The views in this blog are those of the blogger and do not necessarily reflect the views of ABS-CBN Corp.