MANILA - Come election season, candidates of all positions, from President down to barangay kagawad, will troop to Iglesia Ni Cristo leaders to ask for the influential religious group's endorsement.
Iglesia Ni Cristo members are known to practice bloc voting. It means that all members vote for a particular candidate chosen by church leaders.
According to Pulse Asia, 3% of the voting population are members of the Iglesia Ni Cristo, and INC support could translate to around 1.5 to 1.8 million votes, citing 2013 data.
While the INC's support catapulted to political Holy Grail status only during the Marcos administration, members of the INC have been asserting their political influence through bloc voting since the Philippines held its first general elections in 1935.
Did INC's support translate to a candidate's win? Who won, who lost among Iglesia’s endorsees?
See who the Iglesia Ni Cristo has supported since the 1935 elections:
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Photo from malacanang.gov.ph
1935 AND 1941 ELECTIONS - MANUEL QUEZON
The Iglesia ni Cristo endorsed Manuel Quezon, who served as president from 1935 to 1944.
In 1935, Quezon earned 695,332 votes and won over his opponents, former President Emilio Aguinaldo, cleric Gregorio Aglipay and Pascual Racuyal.
In 1941, meanwhile, Quezon got 1,340,320 votes, defeating his challengers Juan Sumulong and Hilario Moncado.