ased on the unofficial results from CNN Philippines, and other media outlets, voters appear to have given President Rodrigo Duterte an enthusiastic “thumbs up” in this midterm election. The unofficial count for the Senate races where only the top 12 vote-getters get to become Senators, shows that not a single opposition candidate made the cut.
Many who opposed Duterte had hitched their hopes on a Senate win as it was the only institution left that could restrain his administration from what they see as its more autocratic inclinations. Unfortunately, as of this writing, with 96.79% of election returns in, it looks like the Otso Diretso alliance has been handed a royal drubbing.
Otso Diretso, a coalition of eight opposition candidates from various political parties that included political heavyweights like Mar Roxas and Bam Aquino, had hoped to be bulwark that would keep the Duterte Administration in check.
Instead, emboldened by what it sees as a clear mandate from voters, the Duterte administration will likely aggressively pursue its agenda for the remainder of the president’s term..
There were a few surprises in local contests, family dynasties like the Eusebios lost their hold on Pasig City politics, and the once invincible Joseph Estrada lost his reelection bid for Mayor of Manila. But on the whole, the influential families that wield control over their enclaves have kept their power intact.
Some Filipinos have wondered out loud how, for example, former public officials who were sent to prison for corruption could still make it into the Senate’s “magic 12.” While others have simply given up trying to understand why Philippine elections go the way they do and just cross their fingers and hope for the best..
We may never figure out why we Filipinos vote the way we do. One thing we can all celebrate though, is the fact that we Filipinos cherish our right to vote. And we exercise that right with energy and enthusiasm. Published 5/15/2019