Philippine front-runners threaten an already imperfect democracy

Tom Pepinsky, a Southeast Asia expert and associate professor of government at Cornell University, is available for comments on the upcoming elections in the Philippines. If front-running president and vice president candidates – Rodrigo Duterte and Ferdinand Marcos Jr. – are elected, Pepinsky says it may pose a true threat to an already imperfect democracy.


Pepinsky says:

“The upcoming election in the Philippines may see the election of candidates who pose a true threat to that country’s already imperfect democracy.

“In a complicated race pitting five candidates against one another, the current favorite is Rodrigo ‘Digong’ Duterte – the mayor of a troubled city in the country’s South who has a reputation for ruthlessly pursuing law and order and little respect for democracy.

“Separate elections for the vice president may bring to power Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos Jr., son of the country’s infamous former dictator. If elected, the pair may inject a decidedly more authoritarian element into a political system that has continually struggled with effective governance.”

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