The daughter of Vice President Jejomar Binay can take any criticisms in stride, except those involving her family, particularly a viral fake story comparing her ability to debate with that of her son.
“There is a parody going around about my son. I think that is the most hurtful (criticism I got so far in this campaign,” Nancy Binay told reporters.
The United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) senatorial candidate is referring to a false news report saying that a Makati City court has granted her a temporary protection order against her appearances in public fora.
Related story: Binay turns down Hontiveros debate dare
The parody mocked Binay, who rarely participated in senatorial debates since the start of the campaign period in February 12.
“The request came after the camp of Nancy Binay tried to rehearse a mock debate with one of her personal assistants in an undisclosed location, to see if their bet was indeed incapable of participating in a debate,” the fake article stated.
“The chosen personal assistant to face her was none other than her own 8-year-old son, Julius Benedict Binay Angeles. In the words of one insider privy to the secret mock debate, ‘I’ve never seen a son dominate her mom the way Julius did’,” it went on.
Trying to laugh the satirical article off, Binay expressed fear the voting public would take the story aimed to make fun of her as fact.
“It’s not really hurtful but there is fear on my part because other people may think that the article is true. They wouldn’t know it’s just a parody,” Binay said.
“Now, I fear there would be misinformation with those kind of stories,” she added.
But Binay admits she has been expecting this kind of propaganda against her especially after placing third in the latest senatorial survey conducted by Social Weather Station.
Refusing to let this smear campaign affect her, the opposition bet who unseated re-electionist Senator Francis “Chiz” Escudero from the ranking said she would rather focus on her out-of-town sorties.
This also earned the vice president’s daughter another criticism after she chooses to campaign instead of debating with Team PNoy senatorial bet Risa Hontiveros-Baraquel.
Earlier this month, Hontiveros-Baraquel dared Binay to a debate as an apparent response to posts or memes on social networking websites comparing her track record with that of Binay.
But in her latest statement, Hontiveros came to defend Binay as she urged the public to avoid bullying her senatorial rival and her family.
“We may not agree with the candidate, but she doesn’t deserve ad hominem attacks. If we believe that one’s surname shouldn’t be the basis of our voters’ electoral choices, then we must also ensure that other prejudicial standards are not used in judging candidates,” Hontiveros said.
“Ang public service ay hindi dapat sinusukat sa apelyido, o sa mga personal lang na katangian ng kandidato,” she added.
Hontiveros said that Binay’s rise in the SWS survey means that she can now rest easy.
“As a political expert said, she’s statistically safe. I suppose this should also mean that she can skip some sorties and take part in debates,” she insisted.
“My offer to debate still stands. Debates are the currency of legislative work because that’s how we develop effective policies,” she maintained.
The former media practitioner urged Binay that accepting her challenge would be her best response to her detractors online.