MANILA, Philippines – Despite its dwindling numbers, Liberal Party (LP) president senator Francis Pangilinan on Monday, May 21, said the Senate minority would be forming a "resistance slate" for the 2019 senatorial elections.
In an interview with Karen Davila on Headstart, Pangilinan said that the party, including its chairman Vice President Leni Robredo, is in the process of selecting names for the slate. Twelve Senate seats are up for grabs in the coming mid-term elections.
Pangilinan said the following are being considered: incumbent senator Paolo Benigno "Bam" Aquino, human rights lawyer Jose Manuel "Chel" Diokno, former representative and LP internal affairs vice president Lorenzo "Erin" Tañada III, Magdalo Representative Gary Alejano, former Akbayan Representative Barry Gutierrez, and actress Agot Isidro.
Pangilinan added that they are "still convincing" Isidro.
The senator said the once-ruling party would be forming a "broad coalition" for the 2019 polls and is talking to groups, including long-time LP ally Akbayan, the Magdalo Group, the anti-Duterte Tindig Pilipinas, and civic organization Kaya Natin.
During the same interview, Pangilinan said the party has not been in talks with actress and former presidential sister Kris Aquino for an elective post. He also said that defeated 2016 presidential candidate Mar Roxas, the former LP president, has already thumbed down a 2019 run.
The LP once dominated Philippine politics when its chairman emeritus was president from 2010 to 2016. As is usual in the local political scene, the number of LP members dwindled the moment Rodrigo Duterte of PDP-Laban won the presidency. PDP-Laban now leads the supermajority in both chambers of Congress. (READ: Being 'dilawan' in the Duterte-controlled House)
The LP is part of the Senate minority but a bulk of its members are part of the "supermajority" in the House of Representatives. (READ: The fall of the 'dilawang' Liberal Party) – Rappler.com