02136: As Expected, Miriam Is Running

In terms of filed Certificates of Candidacy, we have 37 candidates for president, 7 candidates for vice president, 25 candidates for senator and 23 candidates for party-lists. This by no means counts as the official tally of candidates in next year's elections - we still expect a lot more applications and eventually the COMELEC will need to screen and filter these applications and determine which ones may be considered to be "nuisance candidates" and thus ineligible to run. We already know of a few of them who will not meet the minimum age requirements and others with somewhat questionable platforms.

But beyond all this, the biggest news of the day was Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago formally announcing that she was going to make another attempt to seek the presidency. She last ran for President in 1992 in a rather colorful election season that eventually saw Fidel Ramos becoming President. At the time Santiago had claimed that she lost through electron fraud and never formally gave up on this assertion until the courts eventually dismissed her case. She's well known for her witty retorts and rather outlandish insults along with her unusual penchant for making jokes. Whether one can consider her track record noble or inconsistent, she has always been very vocal for whichever side of an issue she has decided to take.

It sounds like she's fast becoming the candidate that is popular enough to muster a decent enough political fight in what has always been projected to be an inevitable victory for Vice President Binay despite numerous allegations of corruption. Already we can social media mobilizing support for "iron lady" of sorts as she's fast becoming the figure for folks to rally behind in order to prevent a Binay victory. Whether or not this will be enough is hard to say at this point - the 2016 Election season is just beginning and we can be sure to expect more plot twists in the days and weeks to come.

For now we can only wait and see how she'll approach her campaign and whether she'll be able to avoid calling her rivals "fungus faces" or threatening to "jump out of a plane" should she lose again. If anything, one can clearly see that her PR team has done a tremendous job over the past 20 years to slowly but surely change her image from the loud-mouthed crazy woman to the loud-mouthed intelligent woman. That clearly too a lot of work, so kudos to the folks who helped pull that off.