In Largely Catholic Philippines, A Muslim Woman Shakes Up Senate Campaign

(NPR) — In the Philippines' midterm elections, Samira Gutoc stands out. The ebullient 44-year-old is a Muslim, and the only woman among the opposition's slate of eight candidates running for the Senate.

Samira Gutoc, a women's rights advocate, is fighting an uphill battle in Monday's election. But she has already won a loyal following.

The ebullient 44-year-old is a Muslim, and the only woman among the opposition's slate of eight candidates running for the Senate.

Half of the 24 seats in the upper chamber and all of the 297 seats in the House of Representatives will be chosen in Monday's polling. The Elections Commission says 62 million voters have registered, and if history is any guide, more than 70% of them will turn out.

Rodrigo Duterte, the populist president whose off-color remarks equally repel and attract Filipinos, is not on the ballot. But the election is very much a verdict on his first three years in office. The 74-year-old president has crisscrossed the country for the Senate hopefuls of his coalition and promoted his signature policy on the campaign trail.

Source: NPR, full story

 

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