‘PH elections, like US, must reflect public will’

Posted on November 8, 2012

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The power to vote and the sanctity of the ballot as vanguards of democracy were emphasized by US Embassy officials who held mock polls and an election watch of yesterday’s US elections.

A small crowd gathered for the activity in SM City Cebu’s Northwing to cast paper ballots and vote online in the mock polls.

University students mingled with American expatriates, US Peace Corps volunteers and Cebu businessmen for the exercise.

Results of the straw vote were not immediately available but official results in the US race showed US President Barack Obama winning handily over Republican challenger Mitt Romney.

“The most important winner in every presidential election is not the candidate who has the most electoral votes…the most important winner is the democratic process and the American people,” said US Deputy Mission chief Brian Goldbeck.

Goldbeck said the power to vote is the lifeblood of any democracy and remains its “most powerful weapon.”

Goldbeck told reporters that next year’s Philippine elections should reflect the people’s will.

“The ultimate part is that the elections mean that the people have a choice and a opportunity to express themselves and select the best representatives…the goal is to have free, fair and transparent elections as an expression of the people’s will,” he said.

Goldbeck said the extensive damage wrought by Super storm Sandy didn’t deter voters in New York and New Jersey from going to the polls.

“We have people who fixed the damage caused by Sandy (and made sure) they could vote in the elections,” he said.

The University of San Carlos choir sang both the Philippine and US national elections and Dancesport Cebu performed for guests.

Among those who attended were Capitol consultant Cristina Codilla-Frasco and her husband Liloan Mayor Duke Frasco and US Consular Office chief John Domingo. /Stephen Capillas, Deputy Editor

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