Lakas-Kampi-CMD standard bearer Gilbert “Gibo” Teodoro has been quoted as saying that he will run a “positive campaign.” No mud-slinging and black propaganda. Presumably, this means no dirty tricks, no “dag-dag bawas”. This is what he says and he may actually mean it. Whether this will actually come to pass is another matter, contingent on a number of factors, like how desperate the administration is to have its candidate win.
For whatever reason I can’t explain, I believe he’s sincere. He looks and sounds like a decent and upright fellow. He was a year or two younger than me in law school and although we were never friends, or even acquaintances, he came across as quiet and self-effacing. Brilliant academically. He was certainly not political, as politics was defined in U.P. during the 80’s, despite his formidable political pedigree.
But going by the recent surveys, his chance of becoming president by votes alone ranges from slim to nil. According to Pulse Asia, 79% of the respondents said they would “surely not vote for” (43 percent) and “probably not vote for” (36 percent) a presidential candidate endorsed by Ms Arroyo. The widely-perceived and well-founded “kiss of death” from GMA.
But the fact that someone like Gibo Tedoro, by accident or design, is running under the administration banner is good for the country. He appears to be a good person. I predict he will be graceful in defeat. He will not countenance any payoffs, savagery or skullduggery in order to gain the presidency. This doesn’t mean that those around him won’t resort to the usual foul maneuvers to gain the upper hand. Just that they won’t be as successful as they used to be simply because a vigilant electorate, incensed with the venality and shamelessness of the Arroyo administration, won’t allow them to get away with it this time.
Gibo and handlers are well aware of this. He has a personal stake in ensuring that this election will be honest and fair, as history will never forgive him should he be as depraved as the incumbent. He will know when he’s beat. And will concede without undue delay. And in doing so, restore our faith somewhat in our frayed democratic institutions. This is why Gibo matters. He can rise above himself, and in so doing be a winner even in defeat.
I have no objective basis for saying this. Just a gut feeling.