December 11, 2008
ALL 23 SENATORS SIGN RESO DECLARING HOUSE ONLY CONASS ILLEGAL
Senators are crossing party lines to oppose any attempt at amending the Constitution via Con Ass; expressing the Senate’s sense, through a resolution stating that any attempt by the House of Representatives to unilaterally propose amendments to, or revision of, the Constitution without approval by three-fourths of the Senate voting separately is unconstitutional.
“Article XVII of the 1987 Constitution provides that any amendment to, or revision of the Constitution may be proposed by: (1) of Congress, upon a vote of three-fourths of all its members; or (2) a constitutional convention. The provisions of our Charter are clear that any change in our Constitution requires approval of the Senate and House of Representatives voting separately,” Kiko said.
Introduced by Independent Senator Kiko Pangilinan, the resolution has been signed by all 23 senators of the 14th Congress.
“To amend the Constitution, we need 196 votes or ¾ vote approval. It will render the Senate inutile and irrelevant when joint voting of the two chambers is implemented since all the 196 votes may come from 238 members of the House of Representatives. The composition of the Senate, will not, in any way, allow this to happen as it is our constitutionally-mandated task to preserve the Constitution,” Kiko added. “This is the first time in my 7 years in the Senate that a resolution carried the signatures of all senators. This sends the strongest message yet that the Senate stands united against attempts by allies of the President in the lower House to subvert the Constitution for dubious ends. We oppose the unilateral Con-Ass action of the House of Representatives, that it is, to borrow words from the SC ruling on the case of Lambino vs. Comelec on people’s initiative: ‘No one can trivialize the Constitution by cavalierly amending or revising it in blatant violation of the clearly specified modes of amendment and revision laid down in the Constitution itself. The Senate as an institution has spoken. To borrow the words of the Supreme Court, we will not tolerate this gigantic fraud being foisted on the people by desperate individuals in the House,”‘ Kiko ended. ###