With 3 Senate ‘pillars’ exiting, ex-VP Binay shifts eye to legislation


THE Senate will be losing its “three pillars” in 2022 with the end of the terms of Senate President Vicente Sotto III, Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto and Minority Leader Frank Drilon, even as at least four of its most active members will have to win reelection in order to return to the chamber.

This perceived gap in the upper house was one of the considerations of former Vice President Jejomar Binay in deciding to come out of retirement and throw his hat into the 2022 Senate race, according to eldest daughter Sen. Nancy Binay.

“Actually, I think when he [VP Binay] was just mulling over his running for senator, he asked me if I would mind if ever he runs and wins, the two of us would be thrown together in the Senate,” Senator Binay recalled in a DWIZ interview at the weekend.

“Of course I think he will be a welcome addition to us senators based on his experience. And besides, we know many of our peers, nine senators, will be graduating,” including those who have “extensive legal background and experience on policies on the ground,” Binay said, speaking partly in Filipino.

She said the exit of Senate President Sotto, Senate President Pro Tempore Recto, and Minority Leader Drilon “will be a big loss to us.”

Binay added: “They are deemed as three pillars…I think it’s crucial for the Senate that those who will be elected in 2022 also have the same level of capability and expertise “when it comes to, and especially in,  legislation.”

Asked if it was one of the considerations that prodded the former Vice President to shift from Executive official to lawmaker, Senator Binay replied: “I think that was also part of his considerations. Because when he left politics, he realized, I guess, that his talents would be more needed now in Congress.” She noted that her father started his career as a human-rights lawyer. “This kind of expertise, together with experience as an  Executive, that’s part of what he can offer if he wins a Senate seat.”

Binay noted her father had always been “with the Executive [branch], and then the judiciary as a lawyer, right?”

The Vice President, began his political career in 1986 as Makati Mayor, then also served as Metro Manila Governor, before assuming the vice presidency in 2010.

Asked if she was ready to have her father as a Senate seatmate, Binay told DWIZ: “Yes. I am ready,” even as she aired confidence that the Binay children were brought up to be independent-minded.

She acknowledged there could be a scenario that “I could be in the majority,” while her father would be in the minority, but added this wouldn’t be a problem as all of the Binay children were trained to be independent.

“We were raised to use our critical thinking” she added, but acknowledged that “I’m sure there would be more instances when we would be on the same line of thinking more than not. But, I’m independent from my father, in the same way that he’s independent from me.”

Besides the loss of the Senate’s so-called “three pillars”—with Sotto, Recto and Drilon graduating—five senators must win reelection to make it back to the Senate. They are Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri, and Senators Joel Villanueva, Risa Hontiveros, Sherwin Gatchalian and Leila de Lima. The first four have been among the most active in Senate deliberations and in conduct of inquiries in aid of legislation.

Read full article on BusinessMirror

Leave a Reply