LEGAZPI CITY — With two Bicolanos running for vice president (VP) in the 2016 presidential elections , who ever will be the running mate of Vice President Jejomar Binay, the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) presidential standard bearer, would be the next vice president of the Philippines next year, Albay Gov. Joey Salceda said on Monday.
Salceda said Bicolanos would be divided if Camarines Sur Rep. Leni Robredo accepts the offer of Mar Roxas, the Liberal Party standard bearer, to be his vice presidential running mate while Senator Francis Escudero, another Bicolano from Sorsogon, was earlier declared to be Senator Grace Poe’s running mate under the Partido Pilipinas.
He said the scenario would place two Bicolanos pitted against each other for the second highest post while the vice presidential candidate of Binay would have to keep up a strong hold in his bailiwick and other areas.
The Escudero-vs-Robredo political clash, according to Salceda, would divide Bicol, saying “no matter how you spin it, no matter what you say, we would just elect the VP of Binay.”
“A vote for Leni is a vote against Chiz,” Salceda stressed, adding
“The implications are: there will be no solid Bicol votes as Leni would still win in Bicol but the margin would not be solid; without the Bicol punch, it can only be hoped Binay would end up with a weak VP which he will obviously not since he has to compensate for his current weakness.”
Salceda said he is hoping that the interplay of spatial electoral arithmetic in Bicol Bicolanos will not vote for the VP of Binay.
“I still consider Mar and Grace on the good side of history, so my minimum goal is to prevent a Binay win, but my maximum goal is a Mar-Leni win,” he said.
Salceda said that with Escudero running against Robredo as VP of Poe, that trumps Robredo since it is not good for a Bicolano to fight another Bicolano unless it involves game-changing reasons. ‘Definitely, whether you like it or not Bicolanos will vote for another Bicolano,” the LP Bicol regional head said.
Salceda said Bicol has only 2.6 million voters against the 54 million across the country and it has produced three senators, Escudero, Trillanes and Honasan by bloc voting.
“Nilalaro tayo ng national powers without considering our ethnicity, sensitivity. Parang pinagsasabong ang mga Bicolano,” he claimed.
Salceda said he will go for Robredo and see where he can push the envelope.
“Hope that it will not actually elect the VP of Binay as a consequence,” he added.
National politicians, he said, come and go but political leaders on the ground and on the countryside stay to lick the wounds of their doing and undoing.
When asked what he thinks about the Partido Pilipinas, Salceda said Grace Poe would just have a bunch of political leaders behind her but would not field candidates on the local level.
“That frees them from the local intramurals, especially since politicians tend to flock to the administration party or the leading candidate, that would push more politicians towards the Liberal Party or UNA for their certificate of nomination,” he said.
A political party without a local network would have to rely heavily on air power: news form, media exposure and TV commercials, Salceda said.