A year before the 2010 elections, presidentiables are poised to start the process to close (or fail) crucial deals that will make them real contenders for presidency, relegate them to vice-presidential candidacies, or else boot them out of the presidential race. In the next three to four months, most of these negotiations will conclude.
At the heart of these negotiations will be the capability (independent or otherwise) to embark on a serious bid for presidency. The capability index may include manifest staying power in surveys, war chests, spread and loyalty of networks, and favorable results of the negotiations themselves. Inevitably, the current list of more than 10 probables (or wistful wishers) will be trimmed down to around three or four that the presidential game can accomodate.
With these negotiations starting, so does the countdown to GMA’s lameduck presidency also starts. The charter change agenda needs to produce decisive results in the next several weeks if it wants to be considered a serious scenario challenging the electoral scenario. Alternatively, the palace negotiations for a firewall against post-GMA deluge of ‘reckoning” cases may also need to have decisive results soon.
By the time Congress resumes its session in July, the electoral scenario will be in full force and any leverage that the GMA administration has on the presidentiables will weaken. These times actually are a countdown to many diverging scenarios apart from the electoral scenario.