A REALITY in politics after 2016 is that every local politician wants to be associated with the ruling national party.
In this case, almost everyone is jumping to the President Rodrigo Duterte "brand," albeit criticisms of some few on how the president and his governance go around.
Now it's midterm elections again, and what is unique here is that the bandwagoning for Duterte is almost universal. It was not like before, there were local politicians who either aligning with the Binays or Aquinos, or with Erap or Arroyo.
The funny thing is, local parties may align with Duterte and allied parties, but the internal divide lives on.
Mayor Oscar Moreno is running now with the ruling PDP-Laban where Duterte is its current chairman.
Moreno's political opposition, the Padayon Pilipino party, has established alliances with Hugpong ng Pagpapabago, a Davao-based regional party led by Duterte's daughter, Davao City mayor Sara Duterte.
Although as of this writing there was no clear persona for Padayon to match Moreno, a newly formed group "Partido Federal ng Pilipinas" is said to be another party associated with Duterte.
There were talks that PFP and Padayon might join forces against Moreno. PFP is led by former City councilor Candy Darimbang, while Padayon has incumbent City councilor Nadya Emano-Elipe.
Quite fairly, Padayon's clout has been strong lately in Misamis Oriental province after Moreno left in 2013 to become Cagayan de Oro's mayor.
Governor Yevgeny Emano nevertheless is active with many events and projects he could muster. After all, Misamis Oriental and Cagayan de Oro was once under Padayon's ruling courtesy of the party's patriarch, Vicente Emano.
What to expect? Hopefully not vote buying.