WITH several weeks only before the May polls, our cabalen are preoccupied with two nagging speculations.

One, when can Comelec-declared governor Nanay Baby Pineda be officially seated?

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Two, will Senator Lito Lapid get reelected?

Judging from an antecedent case in the Pagdanganan-Mendoza conflict in Bulacan, it appears that Among Ed has the advantage of time in his favor. He may yet finish his term up to June.

It took several months before the Bulacan problem reached light at the tunnel.

By the same parameter, Among Ed will resort to the onerous and judicial process before he can be effectively taken out of office.

At first our cabalen were outrageously impatient over the result of the protest case. Two months ago they were extremely excited about the new developments. During the present stalemate, Pampangos seemed to have lost their seminal enthusiasm and expectancy of a new governor arriving via Bicol Express.

The Pineda camp has adopted a wait-and-see attitude while waiting for a favorable ruling any day soon. They are confident that by June Among Ed is “dead meat” in a fight fair and square.

The Panlilio group has entrenched itself in defensive position. It is ready with the legal armaments to ward of the “forces of darkness,” in the words of the former preacher.

The public admires Nanay Baby’s subdued rejoicing of her victory at the Comelec. Had she shown exceeding eagerness, over-excitement, and arrogance with her hard-fought triumph, it could have cost her inestimable political damage.

Given the same situation, any other candidate would have launched a massive demonstration to assume the post.

A daily siege by thousands of people, volunteers or a “hakot” crowd, would create an unruly mob at the Capitol.

Pineda strategists, however, kept themselves in low profile. Opting to keep quiet in the waiting. They refrained from displaying a thirst for power.

Had they acted otherwise, the people would have shifted their sympathy to the former priest who has successfully built his image as “underdog.”

Some over eager supporters of Nanay Baby at the Provincial Board who embarrass, insult, or undermine Panlilio add fodder to ignite public indignation. This does not help the cause of Ms. Pineda nor create a good image of her. Enough of the BJ, gentlemen.

Nanay Baby has wisely restrained her great joy in victory. She was neither “gagad” to take over Panlilio’s seat. nor “gigil” to assume the position. Her image as a gracious political lady boosted her favorable mileage in the trust rating. Meanwhile Among Ed is on the offensive. Condemning what he called the “dark forces” that could come from the Coalition, he also took a dig at certain media workers whom he branded as PR men disguised as newsmen.

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The latest SWS and Pulse Asia surveys put Pampanga’s folk hero Senator Lapid in the winning cusp between10-11 in top ranking.

Pampanga voters hold Lapid in No. 1 preference.

As one of the two glamour boys in the Lakas-Kampi lineup, the other being Sen. Bong Revilla, the Sen still exudes that star quality look. His poster dominates those of the less-macho rivals, reviving that old devil’s charm and lady killer pose. His local votes in May will indicate if he, indeed, still carries the vaunted mass support that could make him governor. It seems the masses quite adore him despite his quiet presence in the Senate.

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The Gomez-Cabral family, one of the oldest clans in Mexico town, expressed profound gratitude to Mayor Teddy Tumang who showed his concern and great character during a fire that engulfed the Cabral residence last Thursday.

Tumang, must be the only mayor in Pampanga who was always present during times of disasters, Josefa Cabral-Garcia reported. “He supervised the firefighting units, secured the area, provided company and support to the fire victims, and continue to have the compound guarded to this dry.

“No wonder Teddy is running unopposed in our town. This is a testament to his performance, his genuine love for his cabalen, and his disposition to serve during crisis.” Ms. Garcia commended the remarkable mayor.