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Philippine boxer and poll candidate Pacquiao says TV bout cover not a low blow

Manny Pacquiao Returns Home to Hero's Welcome

Former world boxing champion Manny Pacquiao said on Monday TV coverage of his WBO welterweight bout with American Timothy Bradley would not violate Philippine election laws or give him an undue advantage in his bid for a seat on the Senate.

In a five-page letter to the election commission, Pacquiao, 37, said that as a candidate for the May elections, he was allowed TV and radio air time for political advertisements and that his fight will not consume all of the allotted time.

The commission on Tuesday said it may bar broadcasts of Pacquiao's bid to win back the world welterweight title next month from reigning WBO welterweight champion Bradley because it could give him an unfair advantage in the elections.

"There is obviously no case of undue advantage or undue exposure for Pacquiao as the same rights and privileges are extended by law to all said candidates," Pacquiao said through his lawyers.

The bout will take a maximum of 36 minutes for a 12-round fight, or less if the fight does not go the distance. Under the law, all candidates are given up to 120-minute TV and 180-minute radio advertisements per station.

Pacquiao's description of gays as "worse than animals" last month drew criticism on social media at home and abroad, and cost him an endorsement deal with Nike, the world's largest sportswear maker.

The election commission is expected to make a ruling on the broadcasts soon.

On May 9, more than 54 million people in the Philippines will vote for a president, vice-president, 300 lawmakers and thousands of local government posts.

Pacquiao, who has also courted controversy with comments on same-sex marriage, is running for one of 12 vacant seats in the Senate, the upper house of parliament.

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Manny Pacquiao fights
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Philippine boxer and poll candidate Pacquiao says TV bout cover not a low blow
Manny Pacquiao (R) hits Marco Antonio Barrera during the eighth round of their 12-round super featherweight bout at the Mandalay Bay Events Center October 6, 2007 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Pacquiao won by unanimous decision. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Manny Pacquiao (R) throws a right jab against a blocking Lehlohonolo Ledwaba during IBF Super Bantamweight Championship bout at the MGM Grand Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Pacquiao won the bout by way of knockout after 6 rounds. (Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
Lehlohonolo Ledwaba fails to get up as he is counted out after being knocked down by Manny Pacquiao during IBF Super Bantamweight Championship bout at the MGM Grand Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Pacquiao won the bout by way of knockout after 6 rounds. (Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
April 9, 2016; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Manny Pacquiao returns to his corner following his fight against Timothy Bradley at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
April 9, 2016; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Timothy Bradley throws a punch as Manny Pacquiao defends at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Filipino boxing fans celebrate after Manny Pacquiao's victory against Timothy Bradley while watching on a live telecast monitor inside a basketball court in Manila April 10, 2016. REUTERS/Romeo Ranoco
Boxer Manny Pacquiao poses after working out ahead of his bout with Tim Bradley, in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, United States, March 30, 2016. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson
Apr 8, 2016; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Manny Pacquiao (left) faces off against Timothy Bradley Jr during weigh ins prior to their boxing match at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
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