Last senator standing is my PDI column for today. Do let me know if you think my analysis is on or off the mark.
An alternative to People Power by Ricky Carandang spins another scenario altogether:
The formula could go like this:Mrs. Arroyo, faced with the very real prospect that she will no longer be able to govern effectively because of questions about her legitimacy, simply does the honorable thing and resigns. De Castro becomes acting president, and working with Congress, finds a way to remove all the sitting Commission on Elecitions (Comelec) commissioners from office and replaces them with people of unquestionable credibility like Haydee Yorac, Christian Monsod, or even Cory Aquino. If De Castro is unacceptable or does not want to assume the role, he could also resign and Senate President Franklin Drilon could be made acting president, as suggested by Senator Aquilino Pimentel Jr.After purging the Comelec, the acting president calls for new presidential elections and simultaneously holds a referendum on whether or not Charter change should be accomplished though a constituent assembly or a constitutional convention.Meantime, Mrs. Arroyo and her family will be subjected to an honest-to-goodness investigation by the Ombudsman, charged, and if found guilty, made to share a cell beside Joseph Estrada.
The rumor mill, is in overdrive again. Sources I can’t attribute point to several things:
1. The James Bond-ish mutation of the story, what with an “Agent Doble” and his alleged detention in the seminary according to his alleged wife.
2. Radio reports, which other journalists have been unable to confirm, of two Armored Personnel Carriers (APC’s) at Rockwell, near San Carlos Seminary.
3. The continued threat of reformist elements in the Cabinet to resign if something isn’t done. This is in contrast to what administration officials reportedly told each other at yesterday’s independence day ceremony: that they’re over the hump and looking forward to the State of the Nation address.
4. The absence of former president Fidel V. Ramos, who is abroad, and whom at least one foreign source told another journalist is surveying foreign governments (about what?).
5. The decision of the hitherto lapdog-like broadcaster’s association (KBP) to challenge the NTC’s ban on playing the controversial tapes.
6. The Palace saying it’s ready to face impeachment when everyone assumes it’s an unlikely scenario.
Incidentally, the Palace says this. A man of the cloth I recently talked to, asked about Article VI, Sec. 32 of the Constitution, which states:
The Congress shall, as early as possible, provide for a system of initiative and referendum, and the exceptions therefrom, whereby the people can directly propose and enact laws or approve or reject any act or law or part thereof passed by the Congress or local legislative body after the registration of a petition therefor signed by at least ten per centum of the total number of registered voters, of which every legislative district must be represented by at least three per centum of the registered voters thereof.
But can, and does it, apply as something that can be used under present circumstances? (The entire Constitution is here. Read Article VII and Article XI). All I can find is that the Local Government code provides for the recall of local, and not national, officials.
So, at least for the next few hours, this blog will return to Crisis Mode.