pacquiao
World boxing champion Manny Pacquiao (r.) with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid sign autographs after an Early Vote rally in Las Vegas on Oct. 29. Reid defeated Republican challenger Sharron Angle on Nov. 2.  (Reuters/Mark Damon)

LAS VEGAS — Filipino world boxing superstar Manny Pacquiao stumped for U.S. Senator and Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Democrat of Nevada, who eventually won his tough re-election fight for a fifth-term on Nov. 2.
Introduced by Bob Arum, Top Rank president and staunch supporter of the Democratic candidate, Reid and Pacquiao walked onstage together to the warm applause of the crowd that gathered as early as 4 p.m. at the auditorium of Orr Middle School on Oct. 29.
Arum praised both Reid and the Filipino boxing legend — now a lone congressman from Sarangani, Cotabato City in the Philippines — for their professional achievements and desire to serve the people selflessly despite success in their professions.
“What makes Manny Pacquiao really tough is, I believe, because he fights for those who can’t fight for themselves,” Reid told an enthusiastic crowd. “That’s why Manny is chosen into public service in his home country where he is a member of Congress.”
Reid is undeniably close to Filipinos in Nevada since he sponsored laws to benefit Filipino World War II veterans, and was also responsible for the declaration of October as Filipino-American History Month.
Pacquaio, responding to the warm reception accorded to him, praised Reid for his work in the Senate in support of Filipino veterans and immigration, and warmly endorsed him for re-election.
“I came here to support Harry Reid on his candidacy,” Pacquiao said addressing the crowd. “We are not only to vote but we are supposed to convince our friends and relatives to vote for Harry Reid.”
Majority of those who attended Reid’s political rally were Filipinos who wanted to see  Pacquiao.
“I think he is such a hero that everybody wants to turn out to see him. To have him helping Democrats and Sen. Reid is very important,” said U.S. Rep. Dina Titus of Nevada.
Pacquiao took a leave from his hectic training at the Wild Card Gym in Los Angeles to help campaign for Reid in Las Vegas.
In his message, Reid drew a parallelism in his life with Pacquiao.
Both were born into poverty.
Reid, the son of a miner in the small town of Searchlight, Nevada during its gold-and-silver boom, had to walk to school several miles from Searchlight to Las Vegas, while Pacquiao hardly finished high school due to poverty.
Reid was a champion boxer in college on scholarship which he used to augment his meager education funds.
Pacquiao found his calling in boxing and steadily became a world champion in seven different weight divisions.
Reid rose from the political ranks until he became the U.S. Senate Majority Leader, the highest position ever achieved by any career politician in Nevada.
He has served in the last 24 years his constituents in Nevada.
Pacquaio, on the other hand, is a newly-minted congressman.
As Reid pointed out, both of them wanted to share their life experiences and serve the poor and marginalized constituents through legislation and providing development funds for their respective state and province which they represent when it could have been easier to rest on their laurels.
Both Reid and Pacquiao were mobbed by supporters and fans after the stage ceremonies.
They gamely came off stage and signed autographs and enjoyed photo opportunities with the crowd that thronged the auditorium.