Do you actually believe Inquirer columnist and former Undersecretary Manuel L. Quezon III (MLQ3) when he posits that the collective political psyche of the Filipino revolves around what he refers to as the Marcos-Aquino blood feud? In his Inquirer piece today “Marcos Jr. biding his time”, MLQ3 goes even further to assert that “it was always the Filipino People vs. the Marcoses after 1972” suggesting that in this imagined “battle” between “good” and “evil”, the “Filipino people” are on the side of the Aquinos.
First off, was it Ferdinand Marcos who started this feud or was it Ninoy Aquino? To the best of my knowledge, Marcos was never an enemy of the Aquinos, or the Cojuangcos for that matter. When Ninoy began his political career in the 50s, Marcos was already making a name for himself as Congressman. The feud only began when Ninoy was elected Senator. Perhaps it was the Lopezes who prodded him on after they sensed that Marcos wasn’t going fully honor the quid pro quo they had with Nanding Lopez as his Vice-President.
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The administration coalition is in shambles because the power blocs may be wary of a Marcos presidency. President Rodrigo Duterte may have had other plans which is why he first floated the idea of a President Bong Go. When that didn’t fly, it became Vice-President Duterte. Inday Sara “Daughterte” was in the mix but no way would she be under the control of the Davao Origs under Salvador Medialdea and Go, which is why she categorically stated there will only be one Duterte who will run for national office and she didn’t want to have anything to do with PDP-Laban either. We are not privy to the actual goings-on in the corridors of power but we can only speculate. Based on the facts at hand now, the administration and opposition camps are in the same boat; with the administration having the advantage of the whole of government at its disposal, just like what the Aquino administration enjoyed in 2016. There was a modus vivendi between Daughterte and Marcos Jr; they won’t butt heads in the Presidential race. Marcos has declared his candidacy based on this.
From what we can see, the administration had run out of time before the October 8 deadline but there is still the November 15 one for substitution. The Opposition has shown their cards. It’s Robredo for them and has been all along despite her consternation, discernment, and all the accompanying drama that Robredo brings into what’s really a simple decision to make. The rumblings within the Opposition now is leverage being deployed by leftist-militants which is part and parcel of their process. In the meantime, there is the NPC-Reporma-NUP-UNA coalition which has emerged as better organized, funded, and with a definitive strategy. Neither pro-Opposition nor pro-Administration but pro-Philippines.
MLQ3 is too preoccupied with the narrative that he and other Opposition stalwarts insist is the end all and be all of the 2022 election; stop Marcos and no Duterte as Vice-President. MLQ3 does not even bother to address the elephant in the room which is Mar Roxas casting his lot with Isko instead of Leni. This is why Lito Banayo and Serge Osmeña are running Isko’s campaign with funding being provided by known anti-Duterte oligarchs. Neither the administration nor the third party, which is NPC-Reporma-NUP-UNA, are harping on “the Marcos issue”. Sen. Ping Lacson has categorically stated that the rule of law will prevail. His stand is the country is facing more serious problems than focusing again on the Marcos cases pending before the courts in relation to Marcos’ candidacy. Robredo’s supporters branded Lacson-Sotto as “Duterte enablers” but got the surprise of their lives when some of their Senatorial candidates were adopted by Robredo. Isn’t this an explicit admission that they can’t win on their own merits?
Frankly, the Marcos-Aquino narrative is getting old. Too old in fact. Yet MLQ3 and his ilk, Robredo included, refuse to stop beating on a dead horse. They don’t seem to realize that they’re driving voters away instead of gaining them for their cause. The bandwagon of support on social media isn’t exactly the same on the ground. Then what of the probability that Duterte is simply not interested anymore about who wins in 2022? The only other option he has is substitute for Go and run in tandem with Marcos which would be a game-changer.
In the meantime, the Liberal Party, Aksyon Demokratiko and the supposedly independent Robredo camps are busy sniping at each other. The Marcos and Lacson campaign organizations are focusing on their preparations and minding their own business. It would appear that they are practicing Napoleon’s dictum of keeping quiet while the enemies are making mistakes.
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