The US in the 2016 Philippines Election

This special feature highlights how the US is discussed by the candidates of the Philippines 2016 Presidential Election, which took place on May 9, 2016.

Explore each candidate's background and experience in the US, as well as his or her positions on US-related issues.

Lead Researcher: Melissa Newcomb

All Posts

Jejomar Binay - South China Sea

Binay calls for cooperation with China on the South China Sea territorial dispute to improve trade relations: “China has money, we need capital." [Source] April 12, 2015

“[EDCA] comes after all on the heels of heightened tensions between China and its neighbors, Vietnam, Malaysia, Japan, and the Philippines over maritime and territorial control over one of the world’s most important sea lanes of communications, the South China Sea or the West Philippines Sea, as we now refer to it in the Philippines.”…

Rodrigo Duterte - South China Sea

Duterte speaking to visiting military attachés, including those from the United States and China, during a discussion of the South China Sea territorial: “America would never die for us. If America cared, it would have sent its aircraft carriers and missile frigates the moment China started reclaiming land in contested territory, but no such thing happened.” [Source] July 30, 2015

In reference to Philippines’ case against China over disputed South China Sea territory: “Let’s not talk about ownership and I will not…

Grace Poe - South China Sea

“We really need to continue with our arbitration case. China and the Philippines are both signatories to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. On the other hand, our relationship with China dates back centuries." [Source] June 11, 2015

“The West Philippine Sea is ours. We will protect our right through peaceful means, and according to international law. We will beef up our Coast Guard and armed forces so that we need not be intimidated by other countries.” [

Mar Roxas - South China Sea

“There will be increasing competition between the US and China. It will be felt in the West Philippines Sea.” [Source] November 2, 2015

In reference to the final decision-making on the Philippines’ case against China over disputed South China Sea territory: “We have to protect our territory. So the President made that decision and I would have made the same decision...of filing that case. So, you take in all the best inputs that you can, and at the end of the…

Miriam Santiago - South China Sea

“The government seems to have grown complacent on the issue of the West Philippine Sea dispute, confident that the international tribunal now hearing the memorial it has filed against China will rule in its favor.” [Source] March 3, 2016

Santiago says that if elected president, she will not depend on the US to resolve maritime disputes with China and instead will handle negotiating with China and other countries so find solutions. [Source] March 3, 2016

On maritime disputes with…