The eternal “only”

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ANOTHER event that in this country comes almost as often as its fun-filled fiestas is over, and everyone’s happy – or at least appears to be, except those few, pesky critics of the way things are done in this earthly paradise. The Commission on Elections is happy. Malacanang is happy. The Philippine National Police is happy. The Armed Forces of the Philippines is happy. The winning candidates are happy. Even the voters are happy.

The elections were “successfully held,” says the Comelec — and what election in the Philippines isn’t, and when was the last time anyone said otherwise? “Only” 200 to 300 of its 78,000 plus Precinct Count Optical Scan (PCOS) machines hiccupped, rejecting ballots being fed into them, or even refusing to turn on, in some instances requiring the use of the latest high-tech Comelec device — e.g., broom handles — to fix, in others being consigned to wherever and whatever technological junk pile the Comelec has designated in advance (they knew some of them would fail; that’s why they bought them — which makes sense in the Comelec parallel universe).

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One man, one million votes

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THE candidates for the Senate will be focusing their energies in the coming week on getting the “command votes” of religious and other groups, said re-electionist Senator Gregorio Honasan of the supposedly, but not quite oppositionist, United Nationalist Alliance (UNA).

“Command votes,” said former Army Colonel Gregorio Honasan, “will prove crucial in getting the voters who are still undecided on their 12 choices (for senator) this late stage in the campaign.”

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As predictable as fairy tales

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BOTH in terms of how they’re being conducted and their possible results, the elections of 2013 are shaping up as expected.

Name recall and membership in a well-known political family are what most of the leading candidates for senator have in common. That’s in addition to huge war chests, of which a significant portion is being poured into political ads, particularly after the Supreme Court struck down the Commission on Elections resolution limiting media ad exposure to 120 minutes each.

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