As we await the State of the Nation Address next Monday, July 27, the interest has already shifted to events around it, and not on the speech itself. People basically await if the oft-threatened Con-Ass really will be convened by the GMA allies in the House of Representatives; if nothing more will happen after those short-lived bombings in the South; and if the speculation of a state of emergency or a coup (depending on who is frightening you with stories) will ever come true.
As it is, the more realistic speculation is whether or not Vice-President Noli de Castro will permit himself to be a member of Lakas-Kampi-CMD coalition party and become its presidential standard-bearer in the 2010 elections. This relates to the following question: Will he accept the presidential nomination and run under the shadow of an incumbent GMA with her unpopularity and lose his own popularity?
The window for this decision for de Castro–as well as for Lakas-Kampi-CMD–is narrowing. In August, politicians all over the country–including those in the ruling coalition party–will start to decide on which presidential aspirant they will be identifying with and campaigning for. If Lakas-Kampi-CMD fails to get Noli de Castro (with his perceived high survey rating), then their members will start vanishing and reappearing in other “winnable” presidentiables’ camps. Those in the Lakas-Kampi-CMD stable simply are not in a position to contest the presidential post on the same level as de Castro is currently capable of.
How GMA will solve the Noli de Castro conundrum will be interesting. The SONA may tell us something.