Transcript of excerpts from Sen. Francis Pangilinan’s comments on Senate Resolution 337

March 2, 2020

Mr. President, if we pass this resolution, Senate Resolution 337, it will therefore authorize the Senate President to bring the case before the Supreme Court.

Just to clarify, Mr. President, for the record, it is incorrect to say that this is the first time that such a case or the Senate would have brought a case before the Supreme Court involving the Executive Department.

Mr. President, I was chairman of the Committee on Rules when the EO 464 petition, Mr. President, was brought before the Supreme Court. I was Majority Leader then and I remember — I recall we even designated Sen. Joker Arroyo as one who would represent and argue before the Supreme Court.

Mr. President, EO 464 was the Executive Order of President Gloria Arroyo prohibiting or banning or preventing cabinet officials, military personnel from appearing before the Senate in its exercise of legislative functions without the President’s approval. And we felt this is an encroachment on the Senate as a legislative body in terms of being able to do its work. So that’s not the first time, Mr. President. We’ve done this before.

And I share the view of the Senate President, Mr. President, that the comparison with the Commission on Appointments would be, I believe, comparing apples and oranges. The CA is a separate body. It does not exercise legislative functions. It is a check on the Executive Department’s power of appointment. So, this is not the power to ratify treaties. This is not about — I mean the CA function is not about legislation but in this case, Mr. President, it is the exercise of our power to ratify treaties and our exercise of legislative powers, Mr. President, that are an issue in terms of Senate Resolution 337.

For the record, Mr. President.