Republican, Democratic bets to file candidacies today

Republican has 31 candidates, Democratic Party has 12, unified independent has 18 so far

Ralph DLG Torres, Christina E. Sablan and Arnold I. Palacios

The NMI Republican Party and NMI Democratic Party are expected to show force today when their supporters and family members accompany the candidates when they file today, Friday, their candidacy papers with the Commonwealth Election Commission office in Susupe, for the Nov. 8 general election.

Commonwealth Election Commission executive director Kayla S. Igitol said Wednesday that the Republican Party cancelled their original plan to file their candidacies on Aug. 9. Instead, the Republican Party candidates will file their petitions for nomination and candidacy documents today, Friday, at 11am, while the NMI Democratic Party candidates will file at 3:30pm, Igitol said.

The Democratic Party’s list shows 12 candidates, including Rep. Christina E. Sablan (D-Saipan) and Rep. Leila Fleming Staffler (D-Saipan), who are running for governor and lieutenant governor, respectively.

Gregorio Kilili C. Sablan (Ind-MP) will be filing his candidacy for his 8th term as the CNMI’s delegate in the U.S. House of Representatives under the Democratic Party.

Rep. Richard T. Lizama is the Democratic Party’s candidate for Saipan mayor, while Rep. Celina R. Babauta is the party’s only bet for two available seats for the Senate representing Saipan and Northern Islands. Babauta has already filed her candidacy.

Rep. Christina Sablan said the party is endorsing Rep. Donald M. Manglona, who is running for a Rota Senate seat as an independent.

Sablan said that after filing their candidacies they will hold a roadside waving across the CEC office.

For the House of Representatives, the Democratic Party has seven candidates for 20 available seats. The party has no candidates for Precinct 2, Precinct 4, and Precinct 7 (Rota).

For Precinct 1, the Democratic Party bets are Rep. Edwin K. Propst and Diego Vincent F. Camacho.

For Precinct 3, the Democratic Party has Reps. Vicente C. Camacho and Denita K. Yangetmai, who are seeking re-election. Yangetmai had already filed her candidacy. Lauren Yvonne S. Pangelinan is also the party’s third candidate for Precinct 3.

For Precinct 5, the Democratic Party’s candidate is Peter Reyes Muna. For Precinct 6 or Tinian, the Party has Frederick A. Dela Cruz.

Last July 14, Saipan Tribune published the NMI Republican Party’s list that shows 31 candidates, including Gov. Ralph DLG Torres who is seeking re-election, and Sen. Vinnie F. Sablan, who is running for lieutenant governor.

The Republican has a full slate of candidates for the Senate and mayors for Saipan, Rota, Tinian, and the Northern Islands.

The GOP has also a full slate of candidates for the House, except for Precinct 1, where the party has five bets for six positions.

Last July 22, Lt. Gov. Arnold I. Palacios and Saipan Mayor David M. Apatang filed their candidacies as governor and lieutenant governor, respectively, along with their slate of 16 candidates under a unified independent team.

A source said two more candidates from Tinian may likely file any time their candidacies under the Palacios-Apatang’s independent team.

Meanwhile, former lawmaker Crispin M. Ogo filed Tuesday his candidacy for a Rota Senate seat as an independent. Ogo served two terms, 2004 to 2008, in the House representing Rota.

Aug. 10 is the deadline to file candidacies.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a senior reporter of Saipan Tribune. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has covered all news beats in the CNMI. He is a recipient of the CNMI Supreme Court Justice Award. Contact him at
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