MANILA, Philippines -- Fifteen congressmen, three Cabinet members and two re-electionists are among those in the 30 potential senatorial candidates being considered by the ruling Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats in 2010, its spokesman said on Wednesday.
Except for Parañaque Representative Eduardo Zialcita, Lakas spokesman and legal counsel Raul Lambino did not identify the Cabinet and House members, who have expressed their intentions to run for the Senate in the upcoming elections.
Lambino though named incumbent Senators Ramon "Bong" Revilla Jr. and Lito Lapid, former senator Ralph Recto and former Congressman Prospero Pichay as among those being considered in the administration's senatorial line-up.
Recto and Pichay ran but lost in the last May 2007 elections.
"We are studying the names of 30 potential senatorial bets. We started calling them if they are really serious in running so we can give our support and start floating their names," Lambino said over the phone.
"We have to start floating their names to find out who would pick up let's say, after a year," he said.
Lambino said they did not want a repeat of the last elections where they were caught unprepared because they were "so engrossed" with other issues.
"We don't want to experience the same fate in 2007. Our political party was so engrossed in Cha-cha [Charter change] that everybody thought there will no longer be elections," he said.
"That's the reason why none of us had really prepared for the senatorial elections," he pointed out.
But at this point, Lambino said Zialcita was the only one so far who had agreed to float his name in the media.
"Zialcita has already said yes. He was the only one who said yes when I asked him if I can now mention his name in the media," the spokesman said.
"Yung iba, hayaan ko na lang na sila ang magsabi. Tingnan nyo na lang kung sino ang maingay na [As for the others, let them tell you. Just see who among the] Cabinet members [are making a lot of noise]," he said.
Asked if that included Justice Secretary Raul Gonzalez, Lambino said no, citing Gonzalez's age and health condition.
Lambino said the long list of Lakas also included governors and private citizens but no one else from show business, except for Revilla and Lapid.