Chiz on VP debate: ‘What you see is what you get’

Wyatt Ong
Chiz on VP debate: ‘What you see is what you get’
'You cannot change who you are...what you are in any debate,' says vice presidential bet Francis Escudero on his preparations for the April 10 debate

MANILA, Philippines – For Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero, not much effort is needed for the one and only vice presidential debate organized by the Commission on Elections on Sunday, April 10.

Escudero will face off with 5 other vice presidential candidates, 4 of whom he has regular interactions with in the Senate.

He said he prepares for the debate by reading up and talking to experts. No intense preparations for him as “a debate cannot change a person.”

“Nagbabasa-basa nang konti, matutulog nang mahimbing, at nakikipag-usap sa ilang mga eksperto para ma-brief kaugnay ng mga latest, stats, at updates kaugnay sa ekonomiya at sa ilang mga bagay-bagay patungkol sa iba’t ibang local government units sa ating bansa,” Escudero said in a chance interview in Batangas on Friday, April 8.

(I read up a little, I will sleep soundly, and I’m talking to several experts so they could brief me on the latest, statistics, and updates on our economy and local government units.)

“You cannot change who you are in any debate. You cannot change what you are in any debate. Kung ano ka, ‘yon lang din, at mula’t mula sa pulitika ‘yon naman ako. (What you are, that’s just it, and ever since I started in politics, this is what I am.) What you see is what you get,” said Escudero in a separate interview in Cebu City.

But this does not mean the senator is confident, he said. While no one could be absolutely ready for any debate, he said he would just face it as it happens.

“Ni minsan hindi ako naging kumpiyansa sa anomang bagay sa buhay ko – sa personal man, sa trabaho, o sa pulitika. Palagi, ‘yung tingin ko, running scared ka dapat at paangat palagi at dapat dagdag-sipag pa,” he said.

(Not once was I ever complacent about anything in my life – be it personal, work, or politics. I believe you should always be running scared and you should always be on the rise and be hardworking.)

He reiterated that the televised debate would be helpful in his campaign, as he supposedly does not have enough money to air political ads as an independent candidate.

Asked if his wife, celebrity Heart Evangelista, would be present, Esudero said in jest: “Baka may taping siya e. Baka ma-conscious din ako.” (She might have a taping. I might get conscious.)

He said the same thing when pressed if his presidential bet Grace Poe would be there in the venue.

“Baka pagtawanan lang niya ako eh. Hindi, okay lang naman. Pero siguro baka may ibang lugar din siyang pupuntahan. Dahil, siyempre, kung nasa isang lugar ako at hindi naman siya makakalahok, siguro baka mas gugustuhin at pipiliin niya na nasa ibang lugar [na lang] siya. Saka baka ma-conscious ako ‘pag nandoon si Senator Grace,” Escudero said.

(She might just laugh at me. No, it’s okay, but I think she has other places to go to. Of course, if I’m in a place where she can’t join, she’d rather go to a different place. And I might get conscious if Senator Grace will be there.)

Recent surveys, such as The Standard and ABS-CBN polls, showed Escudero and Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr are statistically tied at the top spot, closely trailed by Camarines Sur Representative Leni Robredo. – Rappler.com

Read about other vice presidential candidates’ debate preparations:

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