Binay touts his popularity in campaign stop

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Vice President Jejomar Binay. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

AGOO, La Union—Vice President Jejomar Binay paraded his high trust rating during a crucial campaign stretch in northern Luzon, hoping his popularity the past three years would help the senatorial candidates of the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) in the May 13 elections.

“Never in our political history has the Vice President been always No. 1 for past three years in trust and confidence,” he told local leaders during a rally at the Eriguel compound here Friday.

“Because of your trust and confidence, I am facing you to endorse candidates who will be like me in terms of work in government,” he said during his 20-minute speech.

Binay described himself as the “model” for a “new kind of politics.”

“It’s a kind of politics that understands governance,” he said.

Binay went on to endorse each of UNA’s nine senatorial candidates, citing their individual track records and campaign platforms.

He acknowledged that the decision to take in Rep. Mitos Magsaysay, a known ally of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, raised questions. But he cited Magsaysay’s legislative work and the importance of having a dissenting opinion in a democracy.

Binay tackled the importance of “delicadeza” (propriety) in endorsing former Rep. Juan Miguel Zubiri, who quit the Senate amid allegations of cheating.

Then it was time to introduce Nancy Binay, the Vice President’s eldest daughter who is  running for senator with the UNA ticket.

The elder Binay said he often described himself in political gatherings as “the father of Nancy.” He later joked that she was his “legitimate child,” triggering guffaws from the crowd.

“When I said my child was legitimate, your clapping became louder. Perhaps you’re getting lots of rumors here in La Union,” he went on.

“Levity aside, just to be serious about it, my daugher has the capability,” he said, defending Nancy from criticism that she lacked both a private career and government experience.

Binay cited his daughter’s work as his assistant when he was the mayor of Makati City and later, as Vice President.

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