President who wins by 'default' has no mandate to govern, Poe says

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If she were ultimately disqualified, Sen. Grace Poe said any victory by one of her rivals would be akin to "winning by default."

Surigao City (CNN Philippines) — Sen. Grace Poe reiterated on Friday (December 4) her call to "let the people decide" her fate in the 2016 presidential elections.

Poe, who is visiting Surigao provinces to consult with student leaders and local supporters, is drumming up public support as she seeks to hurdle the multiple disqualification cases against her candidacy.

Related: Comelec disqualifies Poe from presidential race

"We should not let the few decide on who is allowed to run and who is not—this is best left to the electorate," she said.

If she were ultimately disqualified, Poe said any victory by one of her rivals would be akin to "winning by default."

"If this is a basketball game and you win by default because your opponent failed to show up on time, then that's not genuine victory," she said.

In such case, she said the winner would lack legitimacy and effectively loses the "mandate" to lead the nation.

Related: Palace, LP deny having hand in Poe's disqualification

Poe expressed the same sentiment with the disqualification case slapped against one of her rivals, Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte.

Although she was not aware of the case, nor the grounds for which it was filed, the senator said Duterte's candidacy should also be left in the hands of the voting public.

This was echoed by her running mate, Sen. Francis "Chiz" Escudero, who said their camp will not "be a party" to any disqualification case against any presidential aspirant.

"We believe in the Golden Rule, and we believe as in Senator Grace's case, that these matters should be decided by the people," Escudero said.

Related: Sen. Grace Poe not giving up on 2016 presidential bid

Kapunan: 'Comelec, SC no right to disqualify Poe'

Meanwhile, senatorial candidate Atty. Lorna Kapunan, who accompanied Poe and Escudero, argued that neither the Commission on Elections (Comelec) nor the Supreme Court (SC) has the right to disqualify Poe.

"Comelec is not vested with the power to disqualify national candidates. The law is clear: Comelec can only disqualify local candidates," Kapunan said.

Even the High Court, she added, is not also the proper venue for hearing disqualification cases against presidential aspirants.

"Although this has not been tested but we are prepared to argue that Senator Poe's case should be decided by the Presidential Electoral Tribunal," Kapunan said.

Related: It's not yet the end of Poe's presidential bid, says Comelec