Pro-admin solon says Teodoro-GMA tough team to beat in 2010 polls

November 10, 2009 9:35 am 

By Lilybeth G. Ison

MANILA, Nov. 10 — A pro-administration lawmaker on Tuesday said the tandem of Gilberto "Gibo" Teodoro and Gloria Macapagal Arroyo will be a "tough" team to beat in the May 2010 elections.

That is if President Arroyo will decide to run as vice president in next year's polls, said Quezon Rep. Danilo Suarez in an interview.

"If she (Arroyo) will run for vice president of Gibo, this would be a tough fight because Gibo and the President get very low rating in surveys," he said.

Suarez said the President can be a "good" vice president.

"If you would ask me if she (Arroyo) can be a good vice president, I can say that she is not a bad president except for her detractors," he said.

Suarez also said that members of the ruling Lakas-Kampi-CMD can stay united "if the President would run for a higher position than a congresswoman."

Former Surigao del Sur Rep. Prospero Pichay, Lakas-Kampi-CMD senior vice-president for membership, on the other hand, laughed off speculations the party is planning to draft the President as Teodoro’s running mate, saying that option is "unacceptable."

"Mas katanggap-tanggap pang tumakbo siyang (Arroyo) kongresista kaysa vice president (It's more acceptable if she runs for Congress than vice president)," he said.

However, Pichay said the President has not told him about her electoral plans.

Election lawyer Romulo Macalintal, legal counsel of the ruling Lakas-Kampi-CMD (Christian, Muslim, Democrats), earlier said that under the Omnibus Election Code, a President could run for vice president.

Section 67 of the Omnibus Election Code also states that "any elective official, whether national or local, running for any office other than the one which he is holding in a permanent capacity, except for President and Vice-President, shall be considered 'ipso facto' resigned from his office upon the filing of his certificate of candidacy."

Macalintal, however, said this provision has been repealed as early as 2001 when Congress passed RA 9006.

"The repeal was questioned in Rodolfo Farinas versus Comelec (Commission on Elections), and the Supreme Court said Congress has the power to repeal," he said.

As such, Macalintal said the President does not have to resign in case she files her certificate of candidacy.

Macalintal also said that while the President could run for vice president, seeking a position in a co-equal branch, like Congress, would be more appropriate for her.

"I am not saying that she is running, but in case she seeks an elective post next year, a congressional seat would be better since that is a co-equal branch of government," he said.

Meanwhile, Speaker Prospero Nograles, when asked to comment on the reported plan for the President to run in next year's election, said that "everybody is thinking of their political future, and decide on their political interest."

"It's a personal judgment call," he said. (PNA)

V3/LGI

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