Will Rodrigo Duterte change the Election Game in the Philippines? #Halalan2016

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Is he running?  Or is he not?

That’s the big question of the people.

Mayor Rodrigo Duterte (DU30 for short), has been in the short list of people who are in need of a viable candidate for the Philippine Presidential Election 2016.   A lot of support in display mid-year as people were talking #Halalan2016.  Initially, Mayor Duterte declined and stated that he will not run for the highest office in the land.  Despite that, people still supported him and wanted him to run.  That was in early August.

Another rally was staged by the DU30 supporters in late September, only to be disappointed because he still declined to run.  With the then-looming October 16th deadline to file his COC, many supporters hoped that he would declare his run for the presidency.

On November 1st, Duterte stated that “Even COMELEC can’t make me run for President”.  He even went farther and said, “My stand is still the same and nothing has changed, I am not running for president. I am not interested in the position. I have no ambitions to become president. How many times do I have to say that? I do not have the stomach for it. It is not appealing to me. It is not to my liking.” – Source

So, what’s the change in tune this time?  Why would eye-for-an-eye and no-nonsense mayor decide to run this time?  Will he be allowed to run even after missing the October 16th deadline to file his candidacy?

Honestly, I was rooting for him in the beginning.  I visited Davao early this year and I heard of him for the very first time.  I saw how safe it was in Davao and I asked why that is.  The residents told me that it is due to their mayor who will not stand for any crime in the city.  There were stories upon stories on how criminals were treated to show that he is serious with his warnings.  At one point, he was allegedly shown in the newspapers wielding a gun and quoted as saying, “If you should harm any of the tourists in this city, I will kill you myself.”  I never saw the paper so I don’t believe it and I don’t see any traces of it online.  If he really has a death squad to fight criminals, would you vote for a president who can create such a squad to kill a criminal?  If you allow him to do so, are you also allowing him to create a squad who “may” be ordered to kill anyone?

Realistically, Mayor Duterte has the support that he needs to create waves and possibly even win the election.  By throwing his hat into the ring, it changes the dynamics of Election 2016.  It could divide voters who already had their eyes set on another candidate.

What if Mayor Duterte is simply a tough guy against crime and corruption?  Wouldn’t that be the most ideal president a country can have?  But is that all there is?  How was his background against budget and improvement in Davao?  Has anyone reviewed what he has done to the Davao economy?  If he eliminates taxes for those who earn P25K or less, would that be enough for you to vote for him?

The crime-busting mayor is indeed a threat to the three front runners of the next election.  Senator Grace Poe, VP Jejomar Binay, and Secretary Mar Roxas.

Is it because the Filipinos are tired of the old crime and corruption stigma that they support Mayor Duterte?  Will he win there is a view that Filipinos are basically unruly people?

Time will tell but I can tell you right now, he just shook the Presidential race to the core.

Let’s wait and see.

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