Palace: Duterte endorsement not 'kiss of death'

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
maxPaginationLinks: 10

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 30) – President Rodrigo Duterte's endorsement of any presidential candidate in the May elections will not be a "kiss of death" but a "game changer," according to Malacanang.

"I'm happy for the President that maraming nagtatanong, maraming nag-aabang. Kasi nga it's a game-changer kapag si Presidente ang nag-endorse," acting presidential spokesperson Martin Andanar said in a virtual briefing Wednesday.

[Translation: I'm happy for the President because many are asking, many are on the lookout. Because it's a game-changer once the President endorses someone.]

Andanar also said Duterte – while nearing the end of his term – is not a lame duck president.

He cited the President's high approval ratings, and the fact that many still look forward to his endorsement.

The PDP-Laban faction backed by Duterte has already endorsed the presidential bid of former senator Bongbong Marcos, but the President himself has yet to announce his preferred successor.

Duterte will attend the ruling party's rally in Cebu tomorrow, according to Andanar.

Marcos – who recently met with the chief executive – earlier said he hopes to win his endorsement. 

Fellow presidential candidate Manila Mayor Isko Moreno also said he's open to getting the President's blessing while Vice President Leni Robredo's camp previously told CNN Philippines she will welcome his endorsement as long as it has no strings attached.