Lorenzo ‘Erin’ Tañada left out of LP Senate list but he’s still hopingBy Gil C. Cabacungan
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—He has been conspicuously left out of the senatorial list of the Liberal Party (LP) so far, but LP member and Quezon Rep. Lorenzo “Erin” Tañada III is still hopeful that he will be included on the administration-led coalition slate for next year’s senatorial elections.
“There is no final slate yet up to this date, but I’m preparing,” said Tañada, who would not say whether he’d still pursue his bid even if he were left out of the LP lineup.
Despite leading the selection process, the LP is likely to give most of the 12 slots on its ticket to nonparty members.
President Aquino had confirmed that the LP would take in the Nacionalista Party (NP) of billionaire Sen. Manuel Villar and the Nationalist People’s Coalition of billionaire Eduardo “Danding” Cojuangco, without indicating how many slots each party would take.
Long political pedigree
“I have been mentioned by Budget Secretary Butch [Abad] and Sen. [Franklin] Drilon, but nothing is final up to this date,” said Tañada who boasts of a long political pedigree. Nationalist senators Lorenzo and Wigberto Tañada were his grandfather and father, respectively.
Aside from Tañada, another LP member, Isabela Gov. Grace Padaca, was also considering a run for the Senate and was hoping to be included on the LP slate.
So far, Mr. Aquino has announced his preference for Aurora Rep. Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara of Laban ng Demokratikong Pilipino, Risa Hontiveros of Akbayan party-list group, Technical Education and Skills Development Authority Chief Joel Villanueva (son of Bro. Eddie Villanueva of Jesus is Lord Church), and Customs Commissioner Rufino Biazon of the LP. The President has also given his blessings to his cousin, enterprise-builder Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino IV.
Six reelectionist senators
The administration coalition is also expected to carry the six reelectionist senators—Loren Legarda, Francis Escudero, Gregorio “Gringo” Honasan, Alan Peter Cayetano, Antonio Trillanes IV and Aquilino Pimentel III—as common candidates with rival United Nationalist Alliance formed by Vice President Jejomar Binay and former President Joseph Estrada.
Abad revealed that the NP wanted to include Villar’s wife, former Las Piñas Rep. Cynthia, and former Surigao del Norte Gov. Robert Ace Barbers in the coalition slate.
The youngest son of Sen. Manuel “Lito” Lapid met Friday with the Pampanga chair of the LP to discuss how he could sign up as a party member.
Accompanied by his older brother, former Pampanga governor Mark Lapid, Maynard Lapid held a closed-door meeting with San Fernando City Mayor Oscar Rodriguez who is also the provincial chair of the LP.
But while Maynard, 28, declined to give a statement, Mark Lapid said his brother was looking at probably joining the LP though he has not yet finalized his plan to run for vice governor.
However, tarpaulins featuring Maynard have already been put up in the fourth district of Pampanga, a bailiwick of the Lapids.
Rodriguez confirmed the talks and said: “[Maynard] wants to apply as a member of LP … He also said he wants to run for vice governor.”
A source in the Lapid camp said Maynard would announce his political plans on Aug. 21, his father’s birthday.
“Maynard will run as vice governor, with or without a tandem,” said the source, who asked not to be named for lack of authority to speak on behalf of the Lapids.
Mark said Rodriguez appeared to be aiming for Pampanga’s third district, which he served as representative for four terms before running for mayor of the Pampanga capital in 2004.
Maynard finished a management course and is working for a master’s degree in public administration. He is said to be a green-card holder and the favorite son of Senator Lapid’s wife Marissa, who is facing charges of dollar smuggling in the United States.
Frustrated murder suit
Maynard had his own brush with the law in 2011 after a man he encountered in a bar in Angeles City sued him for frustrated murder. The young Lapid is also an actor. His last movie was “Tatlong Baraha” where he starred with his father and brother in 2006. With a report by Tonette Orejas, Inquirer Central Luzon