Only four senators so far support federal Constitution — Zubiri | Inquirer News
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Only four senators so far support federal Constitution — Zubiri

By: - Reporter / @MAgerINQ
/ 11:59 AM July 16, 2018

Only four of 23 senators are either open to accepting or supportive of the proposed federal Constitution, Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri said on Monday.

Aside from him, Zubiri said the three other “federalists” in the Senate are Senators Aqulino “Koko” Pimentel III, Manny Pacquiao, and Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III.

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“There are four federalists in the Senate. Koko and myself because I’m being from Mindanao…Senator Pacquiao, also a Mindanaoan and SP Sotto, the SP, is open to it. But so far these four are the only ones that have said that they are willing to look into this, study it and push for it,” ,” the Majority Leader said in an interview over ABS-CBN News Channel.

“Where we are as its stands, the Senate is still iffy on the Charter change movements,” Zubiri said.

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The Consultative Committee tasked to review the 1987 Constitution has approved a draft federal Constitution, which was already submitted to the Senate and the House of Representatives.

President Rodrigo Duterte is expected to endorse the draft charter during his State of the Nation Address (SONA) on July 23.

Zubiri, in a text message, clarified that there are more senators who are supportive of amending the Constitution “but not for total overhaul.”

To amend the Constitution, the Majority Leader said the Senate has to muster a three-fourths vote or 18 of the 23 senators.

However, he was unsure if they could get the required votes, considering that there are only 17 members in the majority.

“The majority is only 17 and who among the opposition will join us kaya? Nobody from the minority will join us, definitely not Bam, definitely not Manong Frank, not Risa definitely especially Leila, she’s there at Camp Crame, lalong lalo na si Senator Trillanes. So kulang…” Zubiri said.

He was referring to the opposition members in the Senate— Minority Leader Franklin Drilon, Senators Bam Aquino, Risa Hontiveros, Antonio Trillanes, and Leila de Lima, who has been charged and detained over alleged involvement on illegal drugs. The other minority member is Senator Francis Pangilinan.

Even within the majority, Zubiri said not all its members were supportive of amending the Constitution.   /vvp

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