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Opinion

Again, why is Governor Gwen virtually unbeatable?

WHAT MATTERS MOST - Atty. Josephus B. Jimenez - The Freeman

Many Cebuanos may not like her chosen bet for president, but she’s still the favorite governor for most. The only person who can beat Governor Gwen Garcia is not running for governor. He is Vice Governor Hilario Davide III. But this gentleman is running for vice governor. He has made a choice that won’t give him anxieties for he’s a sure winner. Davide's gubernatorial teammate has many mountains to climb. He has been missing for too long. He comes back only for politics.

Governor Gwen and Vice Governor Junjun don’t belong to the same party but for the last three years, the vice governor had been very supportive of the governor's legislative agenda. Davide is a perfect gentleman. He never said any bad words against the governor. He stayed in the background, he never tried to outshine the dragon lady from Dumanjug. In the governor's spats with the underlings of Malacañang, the vice governor was all-out in following the line of the lady governor. He was not an obstructionist. Under his leadership, the provincial board strongly supported the head of the Capitol. For all these, the governor called vice governor Junjun a decent public official. Thus, I predict that both of them shall win.

We need to look at the political realities on the ground. The facts and figures do not lie. Of the seven incumbent members of Congress, no one is against the governor, except only representatives Willy and Peter John. But Caminero is term limited, and cannot run for reelection. Calderon and the governor, together with all the mayors of the 7th District, have entered into a modus vivendi, that they are going to support Gwen if she won’t put up her own candidate to oppose Calderon. The deal had been sealed and even if Calderon and Ace Durano are cousins, this covenant is expected to hold. Palabra de honor is thicker than blood.

The camp of Ace Durano should study the empirical data. 2019 election results indicate that Gwen is a very strong political leader. In the 1st District, she defeated Agnes Magpale, another relative of Ace. In Talisay, Garcia got 55,136 against Magpale's 36,821. In Carcar, Garcia garnered 38,871 against Magpale's 16,318. In Naga, 33,857 voted for Garcia and only 17,459 for Magpale. In Minglanilla, Magpale performed better with smaller losses, Garcia got 23,683 and Magpale scored 20,192. But in Sibonga, Garcia had 17,651 while Magpale got only 5,438. In San Fernando, Garcia got 20,889 while Magpale only had 12,452. Credit should be given to the strong support given by Rep. EddieGul, the unquestioned kingpin of the 1st District.

In the 2nd District, Argao gave Garcia 19,101 and Magpale 16,255. In Dalaguete, Garcia got 19,158 and Magpale only 10,162. In the third, Garcia got 26,155 in Barili while Magpale only got 10,525. Toledo made Garcia win with 42,999 while Magpale got only 29,496. In Balamban, Garcia garnered 30,957. Magpale got a very small 5,688. In the fourth, Garcia won in Bantayan with 19,223 and Magpale got 9,366. In Daanbantayan, Garcia also won with 21,457 while Magpale had only 16,589. It was only in Bogo, with the help of the Martinez family, that Magpale won with 22,519 to Garcia's 14,063.

In the fifth, Magpale's turf, she won only the slimmest lead in Danao with 32,476, while Garcia got an unexpected 31,177. Garcia won in Carmen with 17,033 to Magpale's 9,728. Of course, Garcia carried Liloan, where her daughter is mayor and her son-in-law won over the Duranos, getting 32,364 against Magpale's 19,997. Garcia also won big in the sixth. In Mandaue, Garcia got 79,530 to Magpale's 66,044. Garcia also carried both Consolacion and Cordova. In the seventh, Garcia also won six of eight towns. With these track records, tell me how can Gwen lose in 2022? I don’t know how Ace can manage an upset victory. The trajectory is pointing to a very sure win for Gov Gwen. But Ace's teammate, Junjun Davide can even get a much higher margin than the governor.

I am not a troll of the governor. I have criticized her many times in the past. Last elections, I was even sympathetic to Lady Agnes, a very refined and decent lady. But this time, I am fully convinced that the governor will win. Not only that, her solid track records prevail over mere criticisms and empty promises. Mark my words.

GWEN GARCIA
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