Photo by Kim Tiblani/EPA
Manny Pacquiao has wasted little time to transition into his new career since retiring from the ring. After winning his last fight against Timothy Bradley a little more than a month ago, it appears the boxer has now all but secured a seat in the Filipino senate.
According to Filipino social news site Rappler, Pacquiao has garnered more than 15 million votes and is currently ranked 7th for 12 open seats in the senate. With almost 96% of the precincts reporting in, the former boxing superstar is a virtual shoo-in. While official results will not be confirmed until next week, Pacquiao currently holds more than a 3 million-vote lead over the candidate placed in the 13th position.
Pacquiao, who pulled himself out of abject poverty through boxing, is nothing short of national hero in his native Philippines, and has already been twice elected for a position in congress. Much of his appeal is due to his ability to empathize with the struggling.
“If a leader has not experienced being poor, he cannot truly feel for the poor,” Pacquiao said during a campaign rally. “The children sleeping on the streets, using cardboard boxes for blankets, I know how that feels. I know how it feels to go hungry for whole day, just drinking water to survive.”
Image via Rappler
More recently, Pacquiao’s public rant against same-sex couples sparked such public backlash that long-time sponsor Nike dropped the fighter from their brand, and many analysts thought the incident would jeopardize his political aspirations. As of now, however, the controversy has had little affect on his campaign, and Pacquiao appears ready to take his seat in senate this coming July 1st.
It’s also appears that he’s recovered from reports of his poor showing in congress, reportedly only attending a mere