Slowly, presidential candidate Sen. Grace Poe is being unmasked, and has been found not to have disclosed fully her, and her husband's background.
Liberal Party standard-bearer Manuel "Mar" Roxas demanded that Poe should fully disclose her background, after learning that her husband, Niel Llamanzares, who is a special consultant in San Miguel Corp., served in the US Air Force. Roxas said neither he nor President Aquino knew about Poe's husband having served in the US Air Force when they asked her to be his running mate. She never disclosed this to them. Roxas said.
This was the time Aquino and Roxas were wooing her to become his vice presidential bet, and Poe never disclosed this fact.
"No, this was never bared or discussed. She can't say she did, and she should start clarifying this, and disclose her, and her husband's full background," Roxas saud.
Llamanzares remains an American citizen. Poe's children are also American citizens. Poe's natural born Filipino citizen claim has been found to be dubious, despite the fact that the Supreme Court qualified her to run for the presidency.
Under the oath taken by Americans, they swear allegiance to the US and vow to defend the country against all enemies of the US, to the full extent of bearing arms against the foes of the US.
In case of war, Llamanzares will likely be undivided in his loyalty to America and has to be called to atcive duty even.
Should Poe win the presidency, she would have an American husband and children with her, and will most likely be influenced by them, especially when it comes down to serving the interests of America, such as giving in to whatever the US government wants from the Philippines.
Already, the US has five bases for its troops. It is not unlikely that the US government will want more.
Poe herself renounced and abjured her Filipino citizenship and became a dual citizen of the Philippines and the United States. This was in mid 2006. She was still an American citizen in 2015, although she counted her years of residence as a Filipino citizen as 10 years and 11 months, which the Supreme Court upheld, claiming that not only is Poe a natural born Filipino, despite her being a foundling with no known parents, and having met the residency requirements. She claims the conradictory count of her residency in both her certficates of candidacy was an "honest mistake."
The Supreme Court claimed based her being a natural born Filipino on the probability of statistics and her Asian features, which is in violation of the Constitution and its qualification for the presidential candidates.
Following Poe's disclosure that her husband served in the United States military, Roxas urged Poe should use the campaign period to disclose everything Filipino voters need to know about her.
"Now is the time of cmapaigning. She should bare everything so the people will now her past, her capability to serve as president of the republic and most of all, each one's character," Roxas said.
Poe claimed she failed to see why her husband's military background should be an issue since there were also prominent Filipino politicians, such as former President Fidel Ramos, who had studied in military schools in the US.
Poe has this habit of coming up with non-squitur answers that are not direct and in fact, wrong.
Ramos was a west pointer, but he was never an American citizen. Neither did he renounce and abjure his Filipino citizenship unlike Poe and her husband, who remains an American citizen.
Moreover, Ramos was sent to West Point for training and studies.
Poe claimed her husband did not commit any crime against the Philippines by doing so in joining the US military.
Maybe not, But where lies his loyalty, if not to the US. being a US citizen?
Poe then comes up with yet another non-sequitur, saying, "what this means, like they say, 'you can take a Filipino out of the country but you can never take away from Filipino his Filipino heart."
Llamamzares was never a Filipino.
Roxas, for his part, said that if he wins the May elections, the country will elect a president that is "110 percent" Filipino.
Instead of dwelling on her husband's past as a US serviceman, Poe said the focus should be on candidates' character, as well as on pressing national issues.
In a campaign sortie, Poe on Thursday went on the offensive, daring her critics to get in touch with her former employers in the United States to find out the truth on how she made a living when she and her family lived there. It is she who should supply all information, however.
Poe issued the challenge after former Arroyo Cabinet Secretary Rigoberto Tiglao accused Poe in his newspaper column of her exaggerating details of her employment in the US.
He said Poe did not really work as a preschool teacher but only acted as an assistant, and was just a purchasing clerk at the United States Geological Survey in 1998 and not a procurement liaison officer, as she had claimed.
In response, the senator said there was training involved in becoming a preschool teacher and her job required her to take care of children.
Poe said it would be best if Tiglao called up her former employer.
Poe, however, apparently claimed that as a pre-nursery school teacher, she taught them math and geography, which is unheard of as subjects for such chilidren and for a nursery teacher to teach.
Poe has also been denying, instead of answering directly questions on her double US social security numbers, one of which belongs to a dead person.
She claimed she used that SSN as her Boston College ID, but failed to produce her ID.
At the same time, however, she used that SSN which she said is her ID number to purchase a house in Virginia, which is unbelievable. No one sells a home to a buyer on the strength of a old colleged ID.
Poe continue to be hounded by issues putting in question her credibility such as the matter concerning her properties in the United States prior to her return to the country.
With only a month left before the campaign period ends, Poe yesterday said she's ready to deal head on with her detractors and would not think twice in revealing everything, if there are still unresolved issues left.
"What else is there to unmask? But for me, everytime something is thrown at me, I see it as an opportinuty to clarify the issue. I am not afraid, no matter what is claimed. All of us candidates have to ascertain the truth or the lie of what they claim," she said.
Poe was subjected anew to criticisms by the Liberal Party (LP) over her US properties as the administration camp chided her for her belated admission on her alleged "mansion" while she still residing abroad.
The senator insisted that her family acquired their former residence in 2809 Winter Oaks Way in Herndon, Washington DC through hard work and that there's nothing illegal with such acquisition. However she again tries to sideline the issue, since the issue is disclosure, not the legality.
Some quarters are questioning the financial capability of Poe and her husband as there are those claiming that the latter was still taking up a business course at the George Washington University School of Business then.
"Just a reminder, Senator: The issue isn't the ownership of a house; all Filipinos want to have a house to call their own. The issue is the fact that you did not immediately admit that you own a house that even Americans consider a mansion. You should be prepared to reveal everything if you're running for President. Transparency is the way we can avoid the abuses by the chosen few. In fact, that's the goal of the FOI, which you claimed to advocate. FYI," said LP spokesman Akbayan Rep. Ibarra Gutierrez said.
Poe's campaign spokesman Valenzuela Mayor Rex Gatchalian on Thursday said that the senator has been forthright with the details of her life from day one.
"She has been transparent and honest with the facts of her life even her childhood. In fact, her trustworthiness is one of the virtues Filipinos saw last elections when they elected her number 1 in the Senate race. We will let them chart the course of their campaign as they wish, but our campaign will focus on laying down the details of Senator Poe's platform of governance - 'Gobyenong may Puso.' The elections should be about what you can do for the people and not about what your opponent supposedly is," he said.
"For us, addressing the decades old problems of poverty and unemployment will be our message. We believe it is time to bring in fresh perspectives to solve these decades old issues. All the social ills our country is facing stems from poverty. It is time to uproot poverty," Gatchalian added.