MANILA, Philippines - Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard-bearer Gilberto Teodoro and his running mate Edu Manzano campaigned in his Teodoro's hometown of Tarlac on Thursday.
Teodoro's cousin and Liberal Party presidential bet, Senator Benigno 'Noynoy' Aquino, is also from Tarlac.
This raises speculations Tarlaqueños will be split in the presidential race.
But Teodoro refused to be compared to Aquino.
"Kailangan, independent thinking, sipag, talino, galing ng sariling atin, huwag natin iaasa sa makalumang pulitika. Kailangan lumaya ang Tarlac," he said at a rally.
Teodoro is confident he has the support of local officials of the ruling coalition, including Cebu Governor Gwen Garcia, who was earlier reported to be supporting Villar.
Cebu has nearly 2.5 million voters.
Still, other members of the administration party are joining Bukidnon Governor Jose Zubiri. They're jumping ship and supporting Nacionalista Party presidential bet, Senator Manny Villar.
UP Professor Felipe Miranda calls this transactional politics, where different party leaders switch alliances to protect their personal interests.
Villar says LP desperate
Meanwhile, Villar continues to deny he is the secret candidate of President Arroyo.
"Nangangahulugan lamang na desperado na ang posisyon ng kabila, ang mga Liberal dahil sila ang nagpapakalat niyan," Villar said. "Pero ang katotohanan, mas marami silang kamag-anak sa administrasyon ni Arroyo. Ako wala."
NP spokesman Gilbert Remulla asked why the LP is not referred to as "Gloria-Aquino" even if former Economic Planning Secretary Ralph Recto is a senatorial candidate of the LP.
"Bakit hindi nila sinasabi Gloria-Aquino, yung political appointees ni Gloria Arroyo na kamag anak ni Noynoy Aquino ay nandun sa Liberal side," Remulla added.
50% of Cavite for Noynoy?
On Thursday, Aquino campaigned in Cavite, the 4th vote-rich province in the country.
Cavite Governor Ayong Malicsi said half of Cavite's voters or 1.6 million people will vote for the LP's presidential bet.
Aquino is also undaunted by the reports the Garcias of Cebu will go for Villar.
Aquino said another influential family in Cebu, the Osmeña clan, is on his side.
Meantime, former President Joseph Estrada went to Nueva Ecija on Thursday. He believes he will win by a landslide in the province again.
He said he has consistently placed number one in Nueva Ecija since he ran for the Senate.
Estrada added his friend, the late actor Fernando Poe Jr. was victorious in the province when he ran for president, in 2004.