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Duterte’s Mediated Populism

Duterte’s Mediated Populism Rodrigo Duterte’s final miting de avance election rally in the capital’s Luneta Park was a spectacular event, just two nights before the 9 May polls. Tens of thousands of supporters filled the venue, many sporting the controversial Davao mayor’s red campaign colours; the sense of impending victory was palpable. Many had travelled all the way from Mindanao to take part. After a long series of warm-up acts such as songs from artists including the popular Mocha Girls, Duterte himself took to the podium, bragging about his libido and announcing to loud cheers that he would have the bodies of criminals thrown into nearby Manila Bay. As usual, the leading presidential candidate had little to say about policy specifics. Duterte’s style was conversational and at times avuncular: his eighty-minute speech was delivered not from a podium, but standing on a crowded platform among a group of his allies and close supporters, like a local boss figure hanging out with his barkada, or gang.1 Despite — indeed partly because of — the ominous warnings sounded by incumbent President Benigno Aquino III, Duterte’s vulgarity and plain-speaking struck a chord with voters across the socio-economic spectrum. The taxi drivers were no surprise, http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Contemporary Southeast Asia: A Journal of International and Strategic Affairs Institute of Southeast Asian Studies

Duterte’s Mediated Populism


Rodrigo Duterte’s final miting de avance election rally in the capital’s Luneta Park was a spectacular event, just two nights before the 9 May polls. Tens of thousands of supporters filled the venue, many sporting the controversial Davao mayor’s red campaign colours; the sense of impending victory was palpable. Many had travelled all the way from Mindanao to take part. After a long series of warm-up acts such as songs from artists including the popular Mocha Girls, Duterte himself took to the podium, bragging about his libido and announcing to loud cheers that he would have the bodies of criminals thrown into nearby Manila Bay. As usual, the leading presidential candidate had little to say about policy specifics. Duterte’s style was conversational and at times avuncular: his eighty-minute speech was delivered not from a podium, but standing on a crowded platform among a group of his allies and close supporters, like a local boss figure hanging out with his barkada, or gang.1 Despite — indeed partly because of — the ominous warnings sounded by incumbent President Benigno Aquino III, Duterte’s vulgarity and plain-speaking struck a chord with voters across the socio-economic spectrum. The taxi drivers were no surprise, but I was taken aback to find that academic colleagues at the University of the Philippines, the doctor who treated me for a cough, and even self-styled human rights lawyers were cheering on a candidate whose major campaign themes comprised valorizing his own masculinity, and solving policy problems through extra-judicial killing. is Professor of Political Science at the University of Leeds and a Visitor at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton. Postal address: School of Politics and International Studies, University of Leeds, Leeds LS2 9JT, UK; email: d.j.mccargo@leeds.ac.uk. 01 Roundtable-3P.indd 185 Across town at...
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Publisher
Institute of Southeast Asian Studies
Copyright
Copyright © The Institute of Southeast Asian Studies.
ISSN
1793-284X
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Abstract

Rodrigo Duterte’s final miting de avance election rally in the capital’s Luneta Park was a spectacular event, just two nights before the 9 May polls. Tens of thousands of supporters filled the venue, many sporting the controversial Davao mayor’s red campaign colours; the sense of impending victory was palpable. Many had travelled all the way from Mindanao to take part. After a long series of warm-up acts such as songs from artists including the popular Mocha Girls, Duterte himself took to the podium, bragging about his libido and announcing to loud cheers that he would have the bodies of criminals thrown into nearby Manila Bay. As usual, the leading presidential candidate had little to say about policy specifics. Duterte’s style was conversational and at times avuncular: his eighty-minute speech was delivered not from a podium, but standing on a crowded platform among a group of his allies and close supporters, like a local boss figure hanging out with his barkada, or gang.1 Despite — indeed partly because of — the ominous warnings sounded by incumbent President Benigno Aquino III, Duterte’s vulgarity and plain-speaking struck a chord with voters across the socio-economic spectrum. The taxi drivers were no surprise,

Journal

Contemporary Southeast Asia: A Journal of International and Strategic AffairsInstitute of Southeast Asian Studies

Published: Aug 13, 2016

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