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Ferdinand Marcos Jr, the son of the late Philippine dictator, won the Philippine presidency by a landslide.
Marcos Jr. had more than 31 million votes out of 67 million registered voters, with more than 97% of the polls tabulated Tuesday afternoon. His closest rival, Vice President Leni Robredo, an advocate of human rights, had 14.7 million votes in Monday’s election. Official outcomes, however, could take weeks to be authorized.
Sara Duterte, his running mate and the daughter of President Rodrigo Duterte, had a staggering lead in the separated vice presidential race. Many supporters want to see a continuation of Duterte’s policies, including his aggressive war on drugs.
On Tuesday, demonstrators, mostly students and constituents of progressive groups, assembled and rallied outside the Philippines election commission in Manila to protest Marcos and election irregularities and the breakdown of vote-counting machines. But election officials declared the consequence of the malfunctioning devices was minimal.
Marcos Jr. ran on a unity platform and promised lower prices, more jobs, and infrastructure and agriculture investment. Political pundits say Marcos Jr implores Filipinos exhausted from the promises of progress, political altercation, and economic reforms from subsequent regimes that failed to help ordinary citizens.
Alliance of the Scions
The alliance of the scions of two political strongholds in the north and south merged the voting power of their families.
Activists who suffered under the Marcos Sr. dictatorship were enraged by Marcos Jr’s alleged victory and vowed to oppose it.
Marcos Jr. and Sara Duterte dodged volatile points during their campaign. They adhered steadfastly to a battle cry of national unity, even though their fathers’ presidencies fanned multiple tumultuous divisions in Philippine history. He has not proclaimed victory but expressed his gratitude and encouraged his supporters to keep watchful until the vote computation is concluded.
While Robredo has not admitted loss, she accepted the tremendous Marcos Jr. lead in the unofficial tally. She pointed out that the battle for democracy and reforms would not end with the elections. Robredo, who positioned herself to encourage transparency, good governance, and human rights throughout her campaign, told her supporters that they were starting.
Her grassroots movement was conducted by a brigade of volunteers going door to door, soliciting votes, and unfailingly luring hundreds of thousands of people into her rallies. As the vote tally revealed the extent of Marcos’s win, Robredo advised her allies and supporters to continue their battle for certitude until the next election.
The election winner will take office on June 30 for a single six-year term.
The president-elect will lead a Southeast Asian nation hammered in poverty, drug wag legacy, pandemic-battered economy, inequalities, communist and Muslim insurgencies, and deep political divisions.
Marcos Jr Campaign
Marcos Jr linked his father’s heritage to his campaign, tapping into the sentimentality of citizens who saw Marcos Sr.’s period as a golden era for the Philippines.
Analysts say Marcos Jr’s rise fulfills the endeavor to rebrand the Marcos image and name. He seems ready to replace President Duterte, internationally known for his war on drugs that claimed over 6,000 lives.
The election also has ramifications beyond the country’s borders that will put the Philippines under growing geopolitical and economic pressure. Its significant territorial claim in the South China Sea coincides with Beijing’s.
Analysts expressed the opportunity for the Philippines to reset its relationships with major powers, and the election result could redirect the equilibrium of power in Asia.
Marcos Jr.’s victory spells a remarkable reversal for the fortunes of the Marcos clan, who went from the presidential palace to outcasts and back in half a century.
Written by Janet Grace Ortigas
Edited by Sheena Robertson
NPR: The son of late dictator Marcos has won the Philippines’ presidential election
CNN: Ferdinand Marcos Jr on cusp of winning landslide in Philippines elections; by Helen Regan
ALJazeera: Philippines election: Marcos Jr set for landslide victory