Manny Pacquiao, Philippines, Tim It discussed on ESPN Daily
Tim as you point out in your story in the West people know that manny is a politician in the Philippines. But it's often couch to sort of a side note when we talk about his boxing. I don't think people really grasp how powerful he is winded it. I really hits you when you arrived in the Philippines that he was a actual contender there to replace Deteriora- as President I think it was more Sort of a visceral feel that I got. I was driving around with him leaving the Senate Chambers and heading toward his home. We've got this caravan with the motorcycles out front and the security van behind us. There's two state police officers national police officers with M16's across their laps. You know ready to go. I mean they`re. They're like head on a swivel. Making sure that nothing's happening to the senator and in the escalate. I'm I'm in with manny. We're in the second row. And and you know. He's sitting there with his left foot up on the center console. And he's looking out all these buses going by and all these poor people in just tired looking people are looking down wondering who's inside that car with the blackened windows there's a nine millimeter handgun right in the seat back in front of him and I just think that you know we're used to athletes getting this sort of treatment in in a way not to this extent but when I saw that it was like yeah this is this is real. This isn't just a guy who's a dilatot in politics. I mean he is definitely somebody that is taken seriously. How has he been able to both? Continue to be a boxer and be active senator. I it's been a juggling act in. He hasn't always succeeded within. He leads the Senate in absences and boxing is still I? When it's time to train. He comes to Los Angeles in the trains for six weeks and lives in his home there. He has probably managed to do it as well as he could. His trainer Freddie Roach famously was fired for suggesting that he couldn't do both since been retired but he had to take fight off for saying that so yeah he. He is managed. He's he's worked at both of them. It's kind of like a dual sport. Athlete I guess. What did you see when you went to the Senate with him? I was fortunate to be there during time when they were. They were debating one of his Co sponsored bills. The MONEY GOES RECOGNIZE. Nice which was a sin tax on alcohol tobacco and vaping all that the food and Drug Administration or if I shall politically regulate and You know he was mostly uninvolved. I will say the the female senator that was his co-sponsor did almost all work in each her. She and her staff were hard at work figuring things out and manny mostly just sat at his spot. It was fascinating because the president of the Senate. It was a tie vote in the president had to break. The Tie was about fifteen minutes before manny's official birthday president of the Senate and breaking the tie said I don't agree with this amendment but our champion will be having his birthday in fifteen minutes in this is essentially might gift and he voted in Ohio. It was it was like this microcosm of many pack yells life. You might not have earned it in the political sense but he got it anyway because of who he is is his platform pretty similar to deter tastes does not seem to be any daylight between them when it comes to things like the drug war is very openly on deter tayside into the point where and this drives the human rights world crazy is he denies that these extrajudicial killings or even happening. There's no excellent detailing in the Philippines. In fact the president tell them told them that we don't want extrajudicial killing and it's really hard to get where he's coming from if you're not there and then when you're there and people say he cannot in any way dissent from territory because that's where this is leading is that if he if he goes against through territory than his presidential ambitions are shot. Tim As you mentioned. Deteriora- is controversial in much the world. He's been criticized for the drug war and has many responded to those criticisms. Did you get the chance to ask him about any of this? I did? We spoke at length about it and and it is mostly denial it is. It is a defensive detaille. One of the ways he defends in this to say he basically doesn't mean what he's saying that do tear. Tate is using this psychological warfare to get people to see that what he's doing good for them and and you can't take everything he says at face value so the conversation can get a little circular when it comes to something like that because it's hard to get to the heart of things one thing man he will say and he says that that that the drug problem is is problem number one in the Philippines and that the answer to it is disciplined. This country needs to be disciplined and do taste Or maybe a champion boxer. Yeah one starts in the other continues. Perhaps what Spannis lifelike now ten Amina. It's it's very extravagant. I it's it's hard to really put into words. Just how many people work for him. And how many people at his house constantly and you know he's got a guy that his job is to cut his meat before he eats. I mean it's just like there's there's nothing he has to himself it seems except via senator. Nba fighter is birthday. Party was so lavish it was. It was unbelievable. It was in a beautiful ballroom in a five star hotel. There was an attire table for foreign ambassadors. There were six hundred people there. The seven course menu there were entertainers. There was a philharmonic orchestra. There were these two game. Show style emcees. There were singers. There was manny singing. His wife saying it was it was so so over the top. The highlight of every Manny Pacquiao. Birthday party is the Raffle at the end where he gave away two cars. He gave away money. They were stacks of money on the table and he was giving them away like two thousand and three thousand dollars per raffle three days earlier. He was standing in his driveway. Giving out essentially twenty dollar bills to the poorest of the or it's fascinating do you think in the Philippines. His rags to riches story too great riches you describe it is part of what makes him so admired. Oh it definitely is and I. And I think that combination of that and his generosity toward toward the people that live there and the poor people even his harshest critics will tell you that his generosity is genuine that that is the truest part of his platform is the idea that instead of in some ways going through the government process of helping people that then he prefers to do an himself. He has a housing project outside of his hometown of General Santos City where he is given land that he owns and put homes on it and he goes to squatters camps. He randomly picks up people and says here. You know come with me. You're getting a new home. In such a poverty stricken country. His wealth does not seem to be criticized or or envied. It's it's okay because he made it and he made it through the power of his own discipline in his own hard work. He still one of them. He just happened to figure this whole thing out in a way that is almost unthinkable in terms of its awed. Tim It's twenty twenty. The next presidential election in the Philippines is in two years. How could this all play out for Manny? Timing seems to just works so perfectly. He'll be forty three years old. I mean the fact that he's boxed as well as he has to. This point almost feels like house money right. I mean you guys. Don't stay this good in their in their early forties. It all seems to line up. Pretty well the exit from boxing and the entrance into this presidential race. It seems like it could be pretty seamless and if that does happen if Manny Pacquiao is elected president of the Philippines. T- think he'll go down as the most powerful athlete in human history. I wrecked my brain for a comparison. I can't find one. This isn't a tiny country. This isn't a sort of figure head job. It's an important place in Scott. A LOT OF PEOPLE. It's not over a hundred million people he would go from this abject. Poverty is a youngster to president of this country just the trajectory is is is unthinkable and I think that it would make him by far the most powerful athlete. Thanks so much. Thank you mean. I presented.