Solons to campaign vs anti-federalism re-electionist senators
By JOHN CARLO M. CAHINHINAN
Around 100 district legislators will press against the re-election of Senators who are opposing the proposed Federal Consitution submitted by the Consultative Committee.
Leyte Rep. Vicente Veloso, chairman of the House committee on constitutional amendments, disclosed that congressmen from the country’s poorest legislative districts have aired the warning as the Senators failed to respond to the lower house bid to convene Congress into a Constituent Assembly (Con-Ass) that would amend the 1987 Constitution.
“Kung matutulog ang mga senador, bahala na sila, although let me tell you marami na talaga, specially coming from the poor regions,” said Veloso.
Majority of the senators are not too keen on pushing for the proposed Charter Change (Cha-Cha) even being guaranteed by the House leadership of a separate voting scheme.
Re-electionist senators include Senators Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, Juan Edgardo “Sonny” Angara III, Grace Poe, Jose Victor Ejercito, Cynthia Villar, Nancy Binay and Bam Aquino.
Pimentel, president of the ruling Partido Demokratiko Pilipino – Lakas ng Bayan (PDP) is the only Senate member who is aggressively pushing for charter amendments.
“Since some of our senators are unooperative in this Charter bid, we will really campaign against them,” said Veloso.
Last August 5, former President and now House Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo filed a resolution expressing the intent of the House of Representatives “to vote separately with the Senate” in amending the 1987 Constitution when they convene into a Con-Ass.
Despite the safeguards which was laid down by Arroyo in her proposal, many members of the Senate are still skeptical over the House leader’s intent in convening the Con-Ass.
Pimentel, a staunch advocate of federalism stressed that Mrs. Arroyo should first win the hearts of many of his colleagues, whom, she had past issues with, such as Poe, Ejercito, and Senators Panfilo Lacson, Antonio Trillanes, and those from the Liberal Party (LP).