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IF the law on campaign spending and political advertising were imposed before the official campaign period began last week, one presidential candidate would have already overspent in the past three months alone, even as he joins four others who would have exceeded the broadcast limit for TV.

IN THE unnervingly expensive race for the Philippine presidency, the candidates who splurge are those less open to discussing their campaign spending, while candidates who spend the least are the most open to talking about their finances. The Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) managed to ask most of the presidential candidates about their positions on various issues involving campaign finance: where they get their campaign money, their major donors, and their expenses.

A BILLIONAIRE and four other millionaires lead the pack of those who want to serve as the15th president of the Philippines, all invariably swearing by an anti-poverty platform, and with some purposely harking on their poverty roots to spin and curry favor with majority of voters who are poor.

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