Saturday, February 27, 2010

Teodoro unsure of Singson vote even after attending daughter’s wedding

By TJ Burgonio
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 20:01:00 02/27/2010

Filed Under: Elections, Wedding, Eleksyon 2010, Politics, Inquirer Politics

Original Story:

SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union, Philippines -- Administration standard-bearer Gilbert Teodoro attended the Saturday wedding of the son of Deputy National Security Adviser Luis “Chavit” Singson Jr., but remained unsure of Singson's support.

Teodoro and President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo stood as principal sponsors at the wedding of Singson's son Ryan and Ilocos Sur Gov. Deogracias Victor Savellano's daughter Patch in Vigan City Saturday afternoon.

“Until the last day, we have to really work for each and every vote,” Teodoro told reporters here Saturday morning when asked if he was confident of Singson's support for his presidential bid.

His acceptance of the young Singson's invitation for him to stand as a wedding sponsor should not be construed that he had the elder Singson's unequivocal support in the bag, he said.

``For me, the choice of sponsor is Ryan's choice. He has asked me to stand as a sponsor as early as last year. I wouldn't put politics into it,” he said at the opening of the Agri-Trade and Tourism Expo in the city.

Speculations had been rife that Singson would follow boxing champ Manny Pacquiao's lead and pick Nacionalista Party candidate Sen. Manuel Villar Jr. over Teodoro.

Singson, a staunch administration ally, fanned these speculations when he told the press Friday that the Ilocos leaders have not reached a consensus on whether to support the administration candidate.

Teodoro, who barnstormed Ilocos Norte, La Union and Ilocos Sur in a bid to clinch the “Ilocano vote,” said he respected the local leaders' decision process.

“I believe they're still making a decision in their own province. And we respect the process they're undertaking in their party,” he said.

La Union Rep. Victor Ortega, who accompanied Teodoro in his tour in the province, said Teodoro's attendance at the wedding should dispel speculations that Singson was supporting Villar.

“Well, I think that's for him (Singson) to answer,” he told reporters, referring to the speculations. But he added: ``Gibo is one of the sponsors at the wedding of Chavit's son. You draw your own conclusion.”

Ortega conceded that Singson, a long-time governor in Ilocos Sur, was still influential in the province.

Ortega, however, said that a majority of the Northern Alliance members, a group of lawmakers from Regions 1 and 2, and the Cordillera Administrative Region, were throwing their support behind Teodoro.

“Yes, most of them are supporting him,” he said, pointing out that this would a spell big difference in the final tally. He also predicted a landslide victory for Teodoro in La Union which accounts for over 400,000 voters.

Ortega conceded that Villar was Teodoro's toughest rival in the Ilocos Region, but he said the region would only go as far as supporting Villar's senatorial candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.

“Ilocos will only carry Bongbong. Even I in Lakas will carry Bongbong, but only Bongbong [in Villar's party],” he said of the son and namesake of the late strongman Ferdinand Marcos.

Original Story:

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