To the LOSERS belong the spoils


THE spoils of armed or political conflicts normally belong to the victor. Alas, Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano learned the hard way that this isn’t always the case. While this political dictum is religiously followed in the House of Representatives, it’s not written in stone in the Senate.

Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez of Davao is reaping the fruits of the victory of his party’s presidential candidate, Rodrigo Duterte. Alvarez is just one of only three PDP-Laban congressmen in the incoming 17th Congress but his lifeline to Duterte is enough to convince an overwhelming majority of his colleagues to back his quest for House Speaker. Well, this is to be expected in the House. After all, congressmen certainly know which side of the bread is buttered. Or, as the more cynical among us would say, “Where the carcass is, that’s where the vultures are.”

We can’t blame Senator Alan for believing that senators are like-minded. He’s the only senator who ran in the ticket of president-elect Duterte. If Alvarez can do it in the House, he can also do it in the Senate. What’s more, only a true follower of Duterte can push for his legislative agenda in the Senate. Thus, clothed with this link to Duterte, he made a pitch for Senate President.

Unfortunately, his colleagues in the Senate don’t share his thinking, especially on the composition of the Senate leadership.

He is unbending in his belief that to the victor belong the spoils. In a legislature, what better spoils are up for grabs than choice posts and committee assignments? Reelected Sen. Vicente “Tito Sen” Sotto 3rd told reporters he got the impression that Cayetano didn’t want choice committees to go to those who had opposed Duterte in the recently concluded campaign.

Sen. Ping Lacson was all-out for Secretary Mar Roxas so he shouldn’t get the Committee on Public Order and Illegal Drugs. He had also opposed, rightfully so I must add, Duterte’s proposal to impose capital punishment by hanging, and has expressed doubts on Duterte’s campaign promise to eradicate crime in six months.

Sen. Manny Pacquiao was in the ticket of Vice President Jejomar Binay. Why then should he get the Committee on Games and Amusements, which has jurisdiction over jueteng and professional sports? If you ask me, Pacquiao’s “inheriting” of this committee from Sen. Lito Lapid would make him a more than able replacement of the former action movie star. Let him be, but I guess Pacquiao’s being in the ticket of Binay was enough for Cayetano to see red.

Former Justice Secretary Leila de Lima was not only in the ticket of Roxas but also a pain in the ass for Duterte. For these reasons alone, Cayetano is convinced she shouldn’t head the Committee on Justice.

Ah, but it seems Senator Alan’s impositions on the Senate leadership did not sit well among those whose votes he was courting. Eight senators led by Tito Sen and six Liberal senators plus two allies headed by Sen. Franklin Drilon are not sold on Alan’s ideas on disqualifying some senators who were against Duterte.

Thus, the Senate in the 17th Congress will have Drilon, a Roxas supporter as Senate President Pro-tempore, Tito Sen, who is with the Binay camp, as majority leader, and Lacson as head of the committee of his choice. They are all with the losing candidates but they’ll get plum posts because the Senate is so unlike the House where only the victors get the spoils.

Now, the only chance of Cayetano’s bagging the Senate presidency is the direct intervention of Duterte in his behalf. However, this means Duterte will be going against the aspirations of Sen. Koko Pimentel, president of PDP-Laban. Perhaps, it’s best for Cayetano to just cool his heels and wait till next year when he’ll get the promised Cabinet post as foreign affairs secretary.

P15 rice a pipe dream?
Reader Jose Samilin believes that it will take a long process to achieve Duterte’s goal of lowering the price of rice to P15 a kilo, “or it will never be attained at all depending on the extent of government support for farmers.”

He also said that the lowering of the price of rice should not entail risks of greater poverty and starvation to rice farmers.

Samilin doubts that the price of rice will go down to P15 a kilo just because it is decreed by the government. Among other things, the government must provide free irrigation, subsidize seeds, fertilizers and other inputs, complete all necessary farm-to-market roads and field trained technicians and agriculturists. I note that many occupying these positions are political appointees and have no training in agriculture at all.

Samilin, who grew up in a farm in Mindoro, also batted for mechanized farming with assistance from government.


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  1. alfredo cumadcad on

    P100 million DAP and Ilo-ilo Bogus Senate FRANKLIN DRILON Faces Plunder Casekaya pala marami ang dishonest na mga judges, lawyers, police, businessmen ay dahil sa mga corruption na iyan.
    kaya pala marami ang mga unfinished road sa cities and towns ay dahil sa mga corruption na iyan.

  2. ibang klase talaga tong si sotto at drilon ginawa lang galamay nya si coco pimentel para magkaruon sya ng posisyon sa senado

  3. malaki ang tiwala namin sayo senator nakikita namin na karapat dapat ka maging isang senate President ikaw ang makapagsasabi kapag may mali si Digong isa kang malaking parte sa senado Kaya mo yan Senator Cayetano may Tiwala kami sayo
    Yan ang mga galawang Yellow sus kitang kita naman e pilit n pumapasok ang mga Dilaw sa Administrasyon ni Duterte tama yan Drilon umepal ka lang jan ka yayaman

  4. alam na namin ang plano nyo Drilon,di kayo mag tatagumpay sa plano nyo.mga wala talaga kayong konsensya.mas karapat dapat na maging senate president si Sen Alan.

  5. hindi nyo ba napapansin n ang mga knukuha ni pimintel s senado ay ang mga klaban ni pres duterte kaya malamang ang nkakatakot dyan ay hahadlangan nila ang mga gusto n patupad n batas ng pres. ntn

  6. kung hndi man si sen cayetano ang maging sen pres. parang mababalewala ang mga batas na gugustuhing ipatupad ni pres duterte dahil sa hahadlangan lang yan nila pimintel n yan n wala nmn ginawa

  7. walang iba at tunay na magaling madaming nagawa si senador Cayetano kaya karapat dapat lamng siya na maging senate president.

  8. kaya ka cguro putak ng putak drilon kc may balak kayong mga yellowtards talaga eh.. di kayo titigil hanggat ndi ninyo nakukuha gusto ninyo.. halatang hatala talaga sa inyo n may balak kayo eh.. kaya sana manalo c Sen cayetano.. para matigil n yang mga binabalak ninyo

  9. sana si Sen Cayetano n lang maupo sa senate presidency.. at ikaw manahimik k n lang drilon.. tapos n ung pag upo mo sa senate presidency n yan.. kaya tumigil k na..

  10. shut up k n nga lang drilon… di kayo mag tatagumpay sa balak nyu mga dilawan.. pati kayo sotto and lacson… masyado kayo marami cnsbi.. sus.. kung kmi lang boboto nyan eh c Sen Cayetano gugustuhin nming iboto sa pagka Senate President..

  11. c drilon maka dilaw yan.. loyal yan dun kay panot.. kaya khit anu gagawin nyan mapunta lang ulet sa knila ung mga mahahalagang pwesto sa gobyerno.. kaya nga puppet din nyan c KOKO… sus.. mas gusto talaga nmin manalo c Cayetano sa pag ka Senate President..

  12. mawawala nga lang pinag hirapan ni President digong… ndi kmi naniniwala sau drilon.. masyado kang madilaw sa tingin nmin.. tuta ka ng nakaraang Administration.. kung c Alan pa maging Senate president.. mas mapapabilis ung trabaho ni president digong malamang..

  13. mga yellowtards tumigil n kayo sa kabaliwan nyu.. ndi kayo mag tatagumpay n pabagsakin ang susunod na administration.. mas gusto nmin manalo c Sen Cayetano..

  14. mr danao, what reader samilin is saying that the gov’t must subsidize is what pinol, the da sec, is saying in his interview with dzrh’s joe taruc. i do not remember the P15 a kilo of rice but free irrigation is sure to be done. of course not now but in the next fiscal year since the current budget of nia is tied with irrigation fees. pinol went around the country and talked with farmer and fishers groups to find out their concerns coz du30 is determined to improved their lot

  15. Jose Samilin on

    About the P15 per kilo Rice a pipe Dream of the Duterte administration, thanks Mr. Danao, well said.

  16. Itong talunang si Allan Cayetano, kung umasta akala mo ay isang victor. Siya itong buntot nang buntot kay Duterte at pilit na isiniksik ang sarili para maging vice-president candidate siya ni Duterte, akala niya mananalo siya kapag dumikit siya kay Duterte.

    Sooner or later ay titirahin ni Cayetano si Duterte. Ganyan ang character ni Cayetano.

    • i agree with you regarding the character of cayetano. i remember my friend who is married to a former congressman. he told me that mike arroyo gave campaign funds to cayetano for his congressional seat quest. when arroyo got into corruption mess, the first to attack arroyo was cayetano and he used this to gain a senate seat.

  17. mario moreno on

    walang duda na ikaw ang nararapat para sa senate, ikaw mag dadala nang senado para sa mabuting patutunguhan,

  18. Cecilia Villanueva on

    Hanga ako sayo sen alan dahil kahit hindi ka pinalad ay nariyan ka parin nakasuporta kay president digong. Dapat ikaw talaga ang maging senate president para mas lalo mo pang masuportahan si president digong

  19. Noon palang nakikita ko ng the best tandem si presidente digong at kuya alan kaya naman sinusuportahan ko sila. Ipinapakita lang ni kuya alan na nandyan lang sya palagi kay mayor kaya dapat siya ang maging senate president para magabayan nya ng mabuti si presidente digong