Exactly 24 hours ago, Girlie, Ayen, and I cast our vote at the polling center inside Claret School in Quezon City.
Today, 24 hours later, what can I say about the May 10 elections?
Are the elections sufficiently credible?
In the weeks immediately preceding election day, Girlie and I were drawn into the campaign for credible elections. We took seriously the criticisms of IT experts and election watch groups about the flaws in the automated election system, especially the logistical problems. The COMELEC’s cavalier stance did not help, even though one of its members, Rene Sarmiento, is a good person and trusted friend.
Up to the eve of the elections, I shared the fears of those who worried that the combination of system vulnerabilities and the special ops of competing camps would result in less than credible elections.
Well, our worst fears did not happen. There are many reports of long lines, disenfranchised voters, and malfunctioning PCOS. But the COMELEC’s “partial but official” tally of 30 million votes from 80% of the PCOS after 24 hours is impressive.
At today’s noon press conference, Chairman Melo allowed himself to joke that this count is “faster than Garci.” For his sake, I hope the results of the random manual audit do not feed lingering doubts about the integrity of the PCOS transmissions.
Are the national election results as expected?
Days before election day, our expanded household was a microcosm of the electorate.
We had different preferences for president – Noynoy, Erap, Gibo, even Gordon. For vice president, Mar, Binay, and Loren. We had more unity on the senators – we did not want the old names, even if they were predicted to win. We agreed on some new faces, especially Danny Lim and Alex Lacson.
For party list, almost all agreed to support 1 CARE because of my work in rural electrification. But Girlie voted for AMIN because Ayi Hernandez is her “adopted son,” and because AMIN has been unfairly attacked by self-proclaimed progressives. Of course we campaigned for Larraine Sarmiento as QC councilor, though our hopes were not sanguine.
Did Noynoy Aquino’s victory come as a surprise? No, I expected him to win, since his campaign had managed to capture the general sentiments for change, against corruption. What surprised me is the landslide lead. I expected his margin over Erap to be narrower.
What about Binay’s lead over Mar Roxas? This definitely surprised me. When the Binay camp talked about overtaking Loren, it made sense since Loren’s campaign was on the decline. But to catch up with the Mar campaign and to overtake it? I thought it presumptious. As usual, hindsight gives some explanations. My best information is that the Mar Roxas focused too much on Loren and matched her preference for “air war,” did not do enough “ground war,” and was blindsided by the Binay ground campaign which was “below the radar.”
The Senate results are predictable and uninspiring. I don’t recall the original French, but it applies: “The more things change, the more they remain the same.”
Frank Sinatra and the party list elections. Since 2001, I have worked with the rural electric cooperatives, particularly in the education of member-consumers. This year, they decided to form the 1st Consumer Alliance for Rural Energy (1 CARE) and sought the support of the electric coops and the member-consumers. The “courtship” took a while, since the coops and consumers had not yet gotten over their disappointment with the party list that they had previously supported. I teased them that their theme song should be Frank Sinatra’s “Let Me Try Again.”
Last time I checked the GMA TV count, the party list 1 CARE is number 8 in the winning list.Explore posts in the same categories: Popular democracy, Power and energy, Rebuilding our Nation