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Publications Archive > The Dilemma of Philippine Campaign Politics

Better Ways to Win

by Erika Mae Lorenzana and Margarita Sayo; edited by Angelita Gregorio Medel
Newsbreak March 13, 2006 page 34

Newsbreak MagazineIf you’re new in politics and don’t want to associate with traditional campaigning in 2007 take a peek into the book The Dilemma of Philippine Campaign Politics: Alternative Campaign Strategies in the 2004 National Elections. The book was released last January when the Liberal Party marked its 60th anniversary.

The book offers a fresh perspective on the continuing struggle for alternative for the country. It feature campaign methods used by Representatives Nereus Acosta and Dina Abad when they ran on their respective districts.

Both won in the last election. Their campaigns however, were not without problems.

Dina Abad had a huge task in running hers. She was considered as an outsider in a close-knit of Ivatan is Batanes. Her only link was her husband, former Education Secretary Florencio Abad, whom she was trying to succeed.

Neric Acosta was not new to the world of politics, where he was running for his second term. But this meant being likened to a traditional politician who was trying to win back favor from his constituents in Bukidnon.

Their campaign strategies were noted by “embedded researchers” who interviewed both candidates during the campaign and after having won their seats. Their vistory was attributed to some factiors.

It helped that both are members of the Liberal Party, which supported their campaign machinery. A positive for Acosta was the support of sympathetic non government organizations based in Bukidnon which brought him closer to the community.

Abad, being a neophyte, addressed things differently. Wanting to avoid devisive patronage politics, she made sure to attend consultations with different groups.

Both candidates still face the challenge of veering away from traditional methods. They still could not do away with rallies, motorcades, and the miting de avance, complete with dancing and singing. They realized real change would need more time, but that a head start could be made today.

-Paul Mata

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