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Jun 27

President:” I was anxious to protect my votes”

At 7:00 p.m. exactly, the President began her broadcast from the Presidential Study in the Palace. The results of the election, she pointed out, had been predicted and the elections deemed credible by foreign observers.

“I recognize making any such call was a lapse in judgement. I am sorry.” She regrets taking so long to respond. “I want to assure I have redoubled by efforts to serve the nation and earn your trust…”

“…I want to close this chapter and move on… I ask every one of you to… help forge one Philippines, where everyone is equal under the law.”

First impressions: the act of contrition was not accompanied by anything dramatic, as far as people surrounding her are concerned. The President shows no inclination to face whatever consequences her statement may open her up to. She wants to move on, but did not address questions on the conduct of the election itself. I think the public will initially be impressed with her reaction, but that it may not satisfy her allies; it will certainly lead to a chorus of denunciations from the opposition to see if they can’t capitalize on it.

There was a flurry of reporting on AM radio, ranging from a meeting of the AFP top brass called at 5 pm, and rumors (apparently emanating from the opposition) that the President was going to announce her resignation (and, additionally, a supposed “simulated” people power, which sounded odd), to the usual worries over martial law. Reporters from Congress pointed out most representatives had gone home to their constituencies.

The Palace press corps was closeted in the Press Briefing Room (also called the Blue Room) in Kalayaan Hall, where a projection screen was set up; there was last-minute confusion as to the extent of media interaction after the President’s statement. As of 6:30 scuttlebutt in the Palace was that the President’s apology was a go.

There’s a historical precedent for a presidential apology to the nation: Diosdado Macapagal’s “mea culpa” address to the nation.

Then Sec. Bunye held a briefing: “She followed the advice of counsel. They reviewed all the tapes, and truly found nothing illegal or out of the ordinary took place.”

What was missing from the predictions earlier was an announcement of the elimination of people around her who harm her. I think this will lead to profound skepticism on the part of people wanting to give the President another chance. Bunye claims the President’s reaction “from the start” was to come clean; but that she had to consult her lawyers, led by Justice Vitug; and that lawyers invariably advise their clients to keep silent until they’ve studied the case. The President finally got the clearance “over the weekend.” Bunye claims the President’s statements do not contradict his own. Bunye says a security investigation will take place as the bugging has national security implications.

The CaT once again translates things into pictures.

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  1. james

    with that
    i am now ready to forgive PGMA.

    … as soon as she resigns.

  2. elias

    ang galing talaga ni salonga! imagine gma fell for salonga’s advice! admit your fault, salonga said, like a true Yoda of Philippine politics.

    I forgive gma. But it now means she must resign or face impeachment. If gma thinks she will do a clinton, she’s wrong.

  3. jdavies

    Her speech is also what we know as “Argumentum ad Misercordiam”, an appeal to pity. Will people buy it? That is the question.

  4. felipoy

    “My intent was not to influence the outcome of the election, and it did not. As I mentioned, the election had already been decided and the votes counted. ”

    Garci: Hello Ma’am, good evening.

    Ma’am: Hello…. Dun daw sa Lanao del Sur at saka sa Basilan, di raw nagma-match ang SOV sa COC.

    Garci: Hindi nagma-match? …dun naman sa Basilan at saka Lanao Sur, itong ginawa nila na pagpataas sa inyo. Hindi naman ho, kwan… maayos naman ang paggawa eh.

    Ma’am: So nagma-match.

    Garci: Oho.

    “That said, let me tell you how I personally feel, I recognize that making any such call was a lapse in judgment. I’m sorry. “

  5. jdavies

    LOL

  6. james

    very funny felipoy.

    The Americans would say:

    If you believe that, I have got a bridge to sell you.

    (Brooklyn bridge, in our case we could
    probably use the San Juanico Bridge)

  7. holyfather

    agree with jdavies, a President rules because of respect and not pity from the people. gma has shown her true lightweight character and must step down

  8. rose

    yun lang naman ang gustong marinig ng tao eh,. aminin nya na sya nga yung nasa tape, ngayon inamin nya na na sya nga yun,tao na ang mag dedecide kung maniniwala sila sa alibay niGMA!

    sus! si GMA buking na, lulusot pa!

    hinde lahat ng pinoy madadala sa paliwanag nya!

  9. mlq3

    I’ll say this: the apology was not what I heard many wanted to hear.

  10. har

    She was doing her best to sound and look remorseful on cam(it could be one reason for the long silence – she went into intensive acting workshop). But what I saw was Bitoy (Micahel V) in drag, and it was Ate Glow’s voice.Mwehehe…

    PGMA’s speech (in parentheses):

    I’m sorry. I also regret taking so long to speak before you on this matter (you see, the acting workshop was taking so looong)

    I take full responsibility for my actions and to you and to all those good citizens who may have had their faith shaken by these events.(Am I in or out?)

    I want to assure you that I have redoubled my efforts to serve the nation and earn your trust. (The next time, there wouldn’t be anything like this. I’ll be super-duper careful)

    That is why I want to close this chapter and move on with the business of governing.(At least umamin ako, no?)

    Okay ba, direk?

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