Will Duterte’s endorsement make or break his chosen presidential candidate?

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 09 2022 02:21 AM | Updated as of Feb 09 2022 02:51 AM

MANILA—Analysts discussed the benefits and disadvantages of an endorsement from President Rodrigo Duterte this coming elections.

This, after Duterte said he is choosing to stay neutral and will not be endorsing any candidate, unless "there is a compelling reason" for him to change his mind.

For Prof. Dennis Coronacion of the University of Santo Tomas' Department of Political Science, Duterte's endorsement will still be beneficial for whoever will get it, despite the president's declining popularity.

"I'm inclined to think na 'yung endorsement ni Pangulong Duterte ay makakatulong pa rin sa kung sino man ang kaniyang i-eendorso...Although bahagyang nakakita tayo ng pagbaba sa mga numbers niya, the president remains popular," he told Teleradyo Tuesday.

(I'm inclined to think that President Duterte's endorsement will still be beneficial to whoever he will endorse...Although his popularity is declining, the president remains popular.)

"On this basis, I think 'yung popularity ng presidente, the continuing popularity ng presidente, although pababa, would rub off doon sa kaniyang kandidato na i-eendorso," Coronacion added.

(On this basis, I think the president's popularity, the president's continuing popularity, although declining, would rub off on whoever he will endorse.)

But since the ruling party, PDP-Laban, does not have a standard bearer, Coronacion believes it is possible that Duterte would really not support any presidential candidate.

"Gusto niya tayong kumbinsihin na wala na siyang stake sa darating na eleksyon na ito," he said.

(He wants to convince us that he does not have a stake in the upcoming elections.)

"This is the first time na makikita natin sa kasaysayan natin na ang ruling party ay hindi nag-field ng standard bearer," Coronacion added.

(This is the first time in our history that the ruling party did not field a standard bearer.)

For Atty. Rogelio Alicor Panao of the University of the Philippines, Duterte's endorsement may also be considered a "kiss of death", and may bring more harm than good to his chosen candidate.

"Hindi siya ganoon kahalaga kung ako ang tatanungin. Sa kasaysayan natin, walang kandidatong inendorse ang pangulo na nanalo eh. Kaya nga tinatawag ito ng ibang analyst na 'kiss of death'," he said.

(For me it's not that important. In history, no candidate who got the endorsement of the incumbent president has won. That is why some analysts call it the kiss of death.)

Panao also said Duterte's "divisive policies" may be taken against the candidate he will endorse, and thus, may affect their chance of winning the elections.

"Marami ring divisive policy 'yung ating kasalukuyang pangulo eh, 'yun bang mga polisiyang hinahati ang madla. So isipin ninyo kung i-endorse niya tapos i-associate mo 'yung tao sa mga halimbawa, malagim na polisiya, baka ikasira pa ng kandidato 'yun," he said.

(Our current president has a lot of divisive policies, or policies that divide the people. So if he endorses a candidate and that candidate gets associated with a problematic policy, then it may damage the reputation of the candidate.)

"Gugustuhin ba talaga ng kandidato ng endorsement kung na-associate ka sa pangulong may ganoong mga polisiya," Panao added, citing the Duterte administration's bloody war on drugs.

(Will a candidate really want to be endorsed by a president with that kind of policy?)

He also said that Duterte may be being careful with his endorsement which may also be taken against him if his chosen candidate loses in the elections.

"Maaring alam ng presidente na 'yung mga i-endorse niya, may repercussion 'yun sa kanilang pangangampanya, baka siya pa ang masisi sa bandang huli," Panao added.

(Maybe the president knows the repercussions of his endorsement and in the end, he may be blamed.)

Watch more News on iWantTFC

Prior to withdrawing his candidacy for senator, Duterte accepted his nomination as vice-presidential candidate of the PDP-Laban faction he supports, back in September 2021.

Then in November, Duterte filed his certificate of candidacy for senator through a representative, while his long-time aide, Sen. Christopher Go, filed his certificate of candidacy as the substitute standard-bearer of a different party, the Pederalismo ng Dugong Dakilang Samahan (PDDS).

A month after, Duterte withdrew his senatorial bid, hours after Go formally dropped out of the presidential race, leaving the administration without an anointed successor. 

His daughter, Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, is currently running for vice president in a tandem with former senator Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr.

Marcos, whose candidacy is being challenged at the Commission on Elections, is up against other presidential aspirants, including former boxing champion Manny Pacquiao, Vice President Leni Robredo, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso, Sen. Panfilo Lacson and labor leader Leody De Guzman. Most of them have also been the subject of Duterte's tirades. 

RELATED VIDEO

Watch more News on iWantTFC