VP bet Rizalito David endorses rival Tito Sotto

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 27)— Vice presidential candidate Rizalito David has endorsed the candidacy of rival Senate President Tito Sotto, whom he described as "the best man for the job."

David made this announcement on CNN Philippines' The Source on Wednesday, but he clarified that he is not withdrawing from the race.

David, a pro-life advocate, said Sotto has contributed a lot to the Catholic Church by opposing the passage of laws allowing same sex marriage, divorce and abortion.

"To me that is most important kasi he loves life, he is pro-life," said David. "He listens to his family. He listens to his wife. Gentleman, family man. Sa akin, kumbaga sa grupo namin na tumatakbo ngayon, siya ang may pinakamagandang record na dapat tulungan."

[Translation: To me, among us vice presidential candidates, he is the one with the best track record who deserves support.]

Before making his endorsement, David said that if the last leg of the debate originally slated for this weekend would have pushed through, he would have made the announcement there.

"May mga bagay na nalalaman ako, iniisip ko kung sasabihin o hindi na," he explained. "Sa akin, itong stretch na ito, gusto ko na lang din tulungan yung isang kandidato na iendorso na lang siya."

[Translation: There are things that I have been pondering on whether I will tell them or not. It's the final stretch already and I just want to help a candidate by endorsing him.]

David earlier expressed his disappointment over the cancellation of the debate, raising the possibility that it was "scripted."

READ: VP bet David: Comelec debate mess could be 'scripted' 

Last month, David said he was willing to back out of the race and endorse Sotto, as well as presidential candidate VP Leni Robredo, to beat the Bongbong Marcos-Sara Duterte tandem, which perennially leads pre-election surveys.

"I don't mind supporting Senator Sotto and I don't mind supporting Leni Robredo if that is the case para lang talunin si Marcos and si Sara (just so we can beat Marcos and Sara)," he said.

David, together with running mate Jose Montemayor Jr., lagged behind their opponents in the March Pulse Asia survey of preferred presidential and vice presidential bets.

Montemayor only scored a 0.05% rating while David garnered 0.01%.

READ: Rizalito David willing to withdraw from VP race to support Sotto; Pangilinan, Bello disagree