Vice President and presidential aspirant Leni Robredo received the support of the de Venecias of Pangasinan even though the family’s party is backing Robredo’s archrival, former Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.
Former House Speaker Jose de Venecia, his wife, former Rep. Gina de Venecia, and their son Rep. Christopher de Venecia raised the hand of Robredo as a way of support during Robredo’s grand rally held in Dagupan City.
The former house speaker, one of the founders of Lakas – Christian Muslim Democrats (Lakas-CMD), currently serves as party chairperson emeritus along with former President Fidel Ramos. The younger de Venecia is the regional and provincial chairperson of the party. Lakas-CMD is endorsing the candidacy of Marcos and vice presidential candidate Davao City mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio who also sits as the party’s chairperson.
The son of the former House speaker admitted that their decision to support Robredo was filled with fear.
“VP Leni, aaminin ko po, hanggang sa kadulu-duluhan, bago pa ako tumuntong sa entablado, ako po ay punong-puno ng takot at pangamba,” he said during the rally, adding an Ebe Dancel song line. “Siya po ang nag-iisang tiyak sa isang libong duda.”
The de Venecias’ support may be crucial for Robredo in Pangasinan where she lost in the 2016 vice presidential race to Marcos by around 567,000 votes.
Local Pangasinan officials showed up at her rallies in the province. Robredo said that some officials are afraid of openly endorsing her.
“Kaya po ako, sobra kong naa-appreciate iyong mga local officials na tumindig po para sa atin ngayong gabi. Lalong lalo na po dahil nasa Pangasinan sila,” she said. — Ronald Espartinez