Senator Francis Escudero’s once bright political star seems to have faded significantly in the aftermath of the 2013 senatorial elections. Once considered a close contender to fellow administration candidate Loren Legarda for the number one spot, Escudero ultimately finished fourth in the race.
Bad publicity caused by his falling out with former president Joseph Estrada and his spat against the parents of his girlfriend Heart Evangelista obviously hurt his candidacy. Iglesia ni Cristo’s decision not to endorse him also added insult to the injury.
Having endorsed Escudero in 2007, one can’t help but wonder why he was junked by the influential religious group this time around. One former high ranking politician who’d been endorsed by the INC before told The Filipino Scribe that Escudero’s vote to convict former Chief Justice Renato Corona may have been a factor.
Escudero tried to gloss over the INC snub, saying in a statement that he remains highly respectful of INC despite not getting their nod. Nevertheless, for INC to refuse to endorse a sure winner like him illustrates the difficulties he might face if he runs in 2016.
Is there a chance for him to be tapped as a vice presidential candidate? Escudero endorsed then-Makati Mayor Binay and not then-Senator Mar Roxas two weeks before the 2010 vice presidential elections. Roxas’ circle, particularly his wife, is not likely to forget that easily.
Can he instead be Binay’s running-mate? It depends on Binay’s biggest political benefactor: Joseph Estrada. Many believe that Estrada wants Binay to tap his son Jinggoy as a political payback. Had Estrada not tapped Binay as his running-mate, he probably would never be a major player in national politics. Given all these realities, it can be said that Escudero’s political future looks in danger. Quo vadis, Chiz?
- Grace Poe 2016? (filipinoscribe.com)