General Admission

Catholic vote, police vote, SVS & ‘Ang Probinsiyano’

By Al S. Mendoza

IS there a so-called Catholic vote?

Seemingly, none.

Otherwise, all those senatorial bets endorsed by President Duterte—notably Bong Go, Bato dela Rosa, Francis Tolentino and Koko Pimentel—should not have won on May 13.

Reason?  Mr. Duterte had consistently been critical of the Catholic church, not even mincing words in throwing brickbats at bishops consistently unleashing critique of his administration.

And hadn’t Mr. Duterte also been guilty of calling God “stupid?”

If you are a practicing Catholic—a diehard at that, perhaps—you wouldn’t be blamed if you didn’t vote for Digong’s pets for senators.

But, seemingly again, if not obviously, the religious—the deeply pious mostly—dismissed the President’s diatribes against the Catholic faithful.

We have a flock that is discerning, separating the chaff from the grain using a broad mind.

Meaning, we don’t just accept what the President says at its face value.

Like everyone else, Mr. Duterte is still entitled to his own rant if he feels like doing it.

He has been that way since he entered politics in 1988. 

As Davao City’s mayor and a congressman for a combined almost 27 years, he has been famously known to call a spade a spade.

His template has always been:  Take me for what I am.

If you don’t like me, I don’t mind.

If you hate me, I don’t mind.

If you don’t agree with my style, to hell with you.

I am what I am. 

Take me, or leave me.

In short, Mr. Duterte is what you get:  You either hate him or love him. 

No middle ground.

No gray area.

And while Bong Go also scored tons of three-pointers at will with his “Malasakit” spin in his campaign sorties, do you believe there is also a so-called police vote?

With Bato as the former national chief of police, did the nation’s entire police force vote for Bato?

I’d be a fool if I said no.

As a retired man in uniform said to me this week: “Of the 12 senators we will elect, why don’t we include one of our own?”

In Tagalog, he said: “Bakit natin pababayaan ang ating kabaro?”

As to Imee, the so-called Solid North aka Ilocandia was at work for her again.

The tragic Marcos magic just would not die down.

Include that new SVS (Single Voting Scheme), which was both employed by Imee and Bong Revilla.

To the uninitiated, the SVS is the campaign tactic of distributing leaflets containing only the names of Imee and Bong.

Junking teammates would easily redound to the equivalent of 12 votes to a single candidate shaded in a ballot.

And Lito Lapid?

“Ang Probinsiyano” brought him back to the Senate.  That simple.

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