'Idol' Finalist's Fan Base Includes Philippines

Sanchez, 16, Is Up Against Phillip Phillips Jr.

"American Idol" hopeful Jessica Sanchez has a fan base that spreads worldwide.

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The 16-year-old Chula Vista resident will face off against Philip Phillips in Wednesday night's Idol finale.

At JNC Pinoy Food Mart in Chula Vista, their restaurant is plastered with Sanchez posters. Employees of the Filipino restaurant donned their Sanchez shirts on Wednesday but her popularity is not contained to just the South Bay.

Sanchez, who was born to a Filipino mother and Mexican father, has a huge fan base in the Philippines.

According to the U.S. Census, more than 182,000 Filipinos live in San Diego County. It is the largest Asian group in the county.

Sanchez is featured prominently in the news from the Philippines.

"Every show in the Philippines, they always ask for text vote and vote for her," said Nora Cruz, the owner of JNC Pinoy Food Mart. "[They] ask for help, of course we have to support her."

In Sanchez's mother's home province of Bataan, residents are holding viewing parties and parades for the Chula Vista teen. Anyone, anywhere can vote for the next "American Idol" and Internet campaigns have been organized in the Philippines.

"This is the first time that a Filipina [is] going to win 'American Idol,'" said Chula Vista resident Pablo Galvez.

Even the president of the Philippines weighed in on Chula Vista's singing sensation.

A spokesperson for President Noynoy Aquino released a statement, saying "The power of music uplifts us all. The entire Filipino people have united in admiration and enthusiasm over the performances of Jessica Sanchez in 'American Idol.'"

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