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Both 'Estrada' and 'P-Noy' endorse Casino.

Byline: DJ Yap

MANILA -- For a second, it seemed senatorial hopeful Teddy Casino had scored a major political coup - getting the support of two kingmakers in the midterm elections: President Benigno Aquino and former President Joseph "Erap" Estrada.

Alas, it was all pretend. The glowing endorsement actually came from mock versions of the two in the person of comic Willie Nepomuceno.

Doing his signature impressions of President Aquino, who is campaigning for the administration slate named after him, Team PNoy, and Estrada, who is backing the opposition United Nationalist Alliance, Nepomuceno recently gave his nod to Casino, who belongs to neither party.

The master impersonator was the main act at a fund-raiser for Casino in Makati City organized by alumni of the College Editors' Guild of the Philippines, of which both Nepomuceno and Casino were members, according to the candidate's campaign team.

As Estrada, Nepomuceno jokingly suggested how the three-term Bayan Muna representative could solve the country's problems, such as eliminating red lights to keep traffic moving, and having eye surgery to get a "clear vision for the country."

"Estrada" told the audience, "Walang tutulong sa Pilipino, kundi ang Casino Filipino! (Nobody will help the Filipino except Casino Filipino)," before correcting himself.

Turning serious, the comedian said it was his first time to openly endorse a candidate for the elections.

He said a lot of good and trustworthy friends had told him about Casino's "principled character and unblemished track record." He said he believed the senatorial candidate could be a game changer in Philippine politics.

"Kung ako si P-Noy at si Erap, susuportahan ko si Teddy Casino para may boses naman ang karaniwang tao sa Senado (If I were P-Noy or Erap, I would support Teddy Casino so that ordinary people could have a voice in the Senate," he said, this time as himself.

"I am now showing you my face for Teddy. I do not know him that well but I know his character. Live long, Teddy Casino!" he said.

Event organizer Mandy Manaloto said, "Our participation in this event is further meant to send a message that we as former members of the campus press are coming forward in support of a colleague."

Casino was a student journalist at the University of the Philippines in Los Banos and served as national president of CEGP in the 1990s.

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Publication:Philippines Daily Inquirer (Makati City, Philippines)
Date:Apr 27, 2013
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