Defeated or cheated?

PERSPECTIVE - Cherry Piquero Ballescas - The Freeman

Even as Congress was scheduled to proclaim the May 2022 election winners yesterday, the supporters of Marcos Jr. and Leni Robredo remain polarized even in their reactions to the last electoral outcome.

The Marcos Jr. team, of course, is gloating over its “landslide” victory and what it terms as decisive defeat of the Leni group.

Did anyone imagine the almost unbelievable millions of votes for Marcos Jr.?

His votes exceeded the total votes of populist Du30 who garnered only 16,601,997 votes in 2016.

Marcos Jr. lost by only 263,473 votes to Robredo’s 14,418,817 votes.

Anti-Leni voters and pro-Marcos Jr. voters must be even more convinced now that their candidate was cheated in 2016. Look at the landslide votes he garnered last May 2022 elections, they would point out.

From another perspective, if the Du30 voters of 2016 all voted for Marcos Jr. who had 14,155,344 votes in 2016, the total would have been 30,757,341 votes.

Although this 2016 added total votes of Du30 and Marcos Jr. fall just a little short of the reported, unofficial 2022 canvassed vote of about 31,104,175 votes, the Duterte side is euphoric with the so-called landslide votes.

To them, the clear winner and kingmaker of the May 2022 elections is Du30 and his enduring populist magic.

They ask, had there been no Du30 votes going for Marcos Jr., would the latter have come out as winner?

Is this interpretation the probable reason why there seems to be many versions circulating about the so-called Sara-Marcos Jr. rift or power struggle?

Is the power struggle between the children of previous presidents real and the reason why there seems to be a rush to proclaim the presidential and vice presidential winners soonest?

There is this theory that while the new administration can only start by June 30, the rush to have the early proclamation and oath may be related to the possibility of a disqualification of Marcos Jr. by the Supreme Court dominated by DU30-appointed justices.

According to this theory, if the incoming president and VP are proclaimed and will have taken their oath, the new VP takes over if the Supreme Court decides to disqualify the President.

If there are no proclamation and oath before a Supreme Court decision to disqualify an elected president is issued, the candidate with the second highest number of votes become president.

Leni will become president, a totally unacceptable scenario for both the Marcos and Du30 camps.

No wonder there is the rush for early proclamation and oath.

Note, however, what an exciting teleserye the post-May 22 election is turning out to be.

What used to be just a Marcos Jr.- Robredo contest seems to be expanding with more protagonists/antagonists included in the unfolding post-election political drama.

Abangan who will ultimately end up winner/s or defeated and/or cheated!

Meanwhile, at the Leni camp, there are still those who want proof that Leni was not cheated and those who are praying for nothing but the truth “to set them free.”

There are also those who have decided to move on, many looking forward to July 1, the start of Leni’s national Angat Buhay NGO.

Definitely, there are still those who feel extremely devastated and disoriented. Volunteer counselors have offered their time and attention to help them process.

More, however, remain in prayer, with God’s peace and radical love in their hearts.

Many can relate to these words of Kiko Pangilinan: “Embrace the sadness and the despair rather than deny it or run away from it. Know that it is ok to be ok. And having embraced sadness and having gone through it, one will emerge stronger, wiser and more empowered to face the future. No such thing as failure, only delay.”


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