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MANILA, Philippines -- (UPDATE - 12:33 p.m.) Aside from fielding Bayan Muna party-list Representative Teddy Casino to run for the Senate in the May 2013 elections, the leftist Makabayan Coalition said it was endorsing five other candidates to make up its “Six Senate Champions.”
At a gathering of its supporters Thursday, Makabayan formally endorsed as its guest candidates Senators Loren Legarda, Francis Escudero and Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, who are seeking reelection, Las Pinas Representative Cynthia Villar and Movie and Television Review and Classification Board chair Grace Poe-Llamanzares.
Casino said the five were chosen because of their “good working relations” with Makabayan in the past.
“Iba ang may pinagsamahan (Having worked together makes a difference),” Casino said. “Together in the Senate, we can be a powerhouse team, pursuing a
Former Bayan Muna Representative Satur Ocampo, Makabayan president, said they chose to adopt the five candidates "based on a history of cooperative relationship with each of them on people's issues and advocacies."
"We propose to field the team as Makabayan's ‘Six Senate Champions.’ This manifests our confidence in the leadership qualities of the six, their personal integrity, and their pro-people stand on significant issues,” he added.
Ocampo said they talked with other senatorial candidates and presented Makabayan’s platform but "they were not so enthusiastic."
He said the candidates they endorsed "shared, or agreed to support, in varying degrees" the following advocacies: