Suarez’s refusal to step down will tarnish legislative process — lawmaker
Caloocan City Rep. Edgar Erice said that Quezon Rep. Danilo Suarez’s refusal to step down as House minority leader will not just tarnish the legislative process but will undermine checks and balances in the Chamber.
“’Yong pagpipilit ni Cong. Suarez at [Rep. Lito] Atienza na sila’y minority, ito’y ‘di lamang pagsasalaula ng legislative process, pagnanakaw ito sa karapatan ng mga mamamayan na magkaroon sila ng karampatang tinig na magbibigay ng check and balance sa Kongreso,” Erice said on Thursday in an interview over DZMM.
(Congressmen Suarez’s and Atienza’s insistence that they are the minority is a blatant disregard for the legislative process. This is like taking away the right of our people to have a voice in Congress. )
The feud on the leadership of the minority bloc at the House of Representatives started when Suarez refused to step down as minority leader despite voting for Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo during the House coup on Monday.
Erice, a Liberal Party member, stressed that the House rules are clear that those who voted for the winning Speaker will constitute the chamber’s majority. Suarez voted for Macapagal-Arroyo.
Hence, he said Suarez’s move to hold on to his position as House minority leader would destroy the credibility of the laws that Congress will pass.
“Lalong masisira imahe ng Kongreso at mawawalan ng kredibilidad mga batas na ipapasa dahil ‘di mahahasa ng check and balance (This will tarnish the image of Congress further, and the laws it will pass will lose credibility because there will be no more check and balance in the Chamber),” he said.
The LP lawmakers have reiterated that they are the “real” minority at the House of Representatives, citing a Supreme Court decision which states that “all those who vote for the winning Speaker shall belong to the Majority and those who vote for other candidates shall belong to the Minority; (b) those who abstain from voting shall likewise be considered part of the Minority; and (c) the Minority Leader shall be elected by members of the Minority.”
They also pointed out that the process that allowed Macapagal-Arroyo to be elected as Speaker were the same rules that would determine the members of the minority bloc. /ee
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