Last March 12, former Quezon City Mayor Brigido “Jun” Simon Jr. approached me in Pampanga to ask me to withdraw from the presidential race. He told me they can convince Sen. Pangilinan to withdraw to give way to the tandem of Vice President Robredo and my running mate, Senate President Tito Sotto.
But I cut him off right there and told him, “I am not withdrawing. May usapang lalaki kami ni SP Sotto na magkasama kami all the way.” I also narrated to him two previous attempts by the Vice President herself towards unification but obviously only for herself. He stopped talking and left.
The former mayor kept asking for an appointment a number of times, purportedly in relation to my campaign. I did not respond as I wasn’t sure what the agenda was, not to mention that I do not know him that well and I was busy campaigning.
Again: I am not withdrawing. Even if I am left running on one leg, I will finish the race. Even if I am crippled, I will crawl to finish the race.
It was a selfless move on my part to offer the unification formula to Vice President Leni Robredo since she was after a united opposition/front in 2022. After all, it was her objective for liaising with different forces or candidates including Mayor Isko Moreno, Sen. Manny Pacquiao, Sen. Richard Gordon, among others.
It goes without saying, I respect her decision to resist my suggestion and whatever reasons she has for declining. I admit that while there could be some complications attendant to my suggestion, nevertheless, it was a sincere and selfless offer in support of her equally sincere efforts to have one common candidate against whoever will be the administration’s bet.
Included in my suggestion was to have Senate President Vicente C. Sotto III as our common VP candidate, if only to emphasize that I have no intention of abandoning my partner. In fact, it was in his presence that I made the offer.
At that meeting, I couldn’t think of another sure unification formula. Not filing in October in favor of one common candidate as VP Leni would want it will not happen, considering that the campaign won’t even start until February or four months later.
That’s who I am. Challenge me and I will deal with it with boldness, honesty, sincerity and sensibility. I take serious matters with utmost seriousness. Concepts are easy to deal with. How to concretize and implement is the hardest part.
In an interview with Senate media and on DWIZ, Sen. Lacson answered questions on:
– meetings with VP Robredo and Manila Mayor Moreno
– President Duterte’s expected support for VP Robredo in anti-drug war
– P100B planned House realignments in 2020 budget
– appointment of new PNP Chief
– possible new post for retired PNP chief Albayalde
QUOTES and NOTES:
Continue reading “#PINGterview: Meetings with VP Leni and Mayor Isko; P100B Realignments in 2020 Budget | Nov. 9, 2019”