Con Ass – a devil advocate’s point of view

When the infamous House Resolution 1109 begins to hug the headlines across the tri-media environment, strangely, not one TV, radio, or print organization bothered to spell out, at least, the very title of HR 1109 which precisely reads as –

“A RESOLUTION CALLING UPON THE MEMBERS OF CONGRESS TO CONVENE FOR THE PURPOSE OF CONSIDERING PROPOSALS TO AMEND OR REVISE THE CONSTITUTION, UPON A VOTE OF THREE-FOURTHS OF ALL MEMBERS OF CONGRESS.”

That stated, it gives us quick tab to check what its textual or contextual theme really is. Are we then in agreement that, after the House of Representatives moved to approve HR 1109, it can subsequently convene, presumably as a Constituent Assembly, to rewrite the fundamental law of the land?

If the protagonists and the antagonists agree to rewrite the Constitution, half of the work is done.

Problem is, the anti-Con Ass do not want it done now – not when GMA, whom they don’t trust, still sits as president. So they rather that it undergoes revision or amendment after her end of term in 2010. In short, if only they trust or are satisfied with GMA, they will not mind that it be rewritten now. Is that the only beef?

Not few think the devil is in the details.

For more than the chronic distrust and distaste of GMA, anti-Con Ass want that HR 1109 be voted upon by ¾ of the members of Congress, voting separately. Following logic, they can bid for time hoping Senate snuff it off – dead on arrival.

How the Senate will respond is beyond us at this point. Nor will it stop House of Representatives to convene next month as hinted on – with or without the Senate counterpart – before GMA’s supposed-to-be last and final State of the Nation Address. Only God knows what will happen in the days and weeks to come.

But what at bottom, seems to be the real crux of the matter? Can the losers in this ‘power struggle’ validly claim HR 1109 was railroaded as to cry wolf? Are they going to take their cause in the streets as the best next battlefront? Should they now demonize the institution of the House of Representatives or GMA herself? Must there be another EDSA? Couldn’t Senate now fold tent?

End-game scenarios are in the works. Yes, there will be x number of them. The military might sponsor a coup d’ etat. There will be street demonstrations from the broad cross-section of body polity. Priests and nuns will come out of their sacred enclaves to agitate the people. Propaganda will flood – offline and online – media?

But before it reached that level, shouldn’t it be best to let all institutions come to play? As soon as a justiciable controversy would have been created necessitating intervention from the Supreme Court, the same should be allowed to render judgment. That means no pressure should be applied or everything might be bursting at the seams.

Come to think of it, the whole imbroglio is not what it seems. Apparently, HR 1109 is well within the prescribed Constitutional lane if the legal scholar has nothing but the text of the Constitution to base judgment from. In short, it can be said to be breathing in the organic law.

There may be almost little need to understand why it is possible to propose HR 1109, it deliberated and debated upon, and then voted upon for adoption. The adherents find sufficient constitutional basis for their worldview in much the same way that the non-adherents find good enough ground for its invalidity or unconstitutionality.

While at this orgy, must it then be in the realm of the experts or the magistrates to now, once and for all, decide the so-called justificiable controversy as to whether or not, any revision or amendment to the Constitution should be by a vote of ¾ with HOR and Senate voting separately?

There is little doubt that where majority rules, Con Ass might pass the judicial litmus test of the High Court as regard its constitutionality. If this happens, the door is open for amendments or revisions of every kind and hue to come in. If this happens, the people’s future is running on a slippery slope.

Everything appears to have been pre-plotted. Malacanang will still be the port of call and the same men and women have become the passengers of the ship of State where GMA has the conn. So, ask now, where is the ship really headed to or are we all jumping ship?