There’s no ‘destab’, no Ides of March, or May, or June, Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto stressed today.
“I think we should dial back the talks on conspiracy theories because there are none,” Recto said.
“Kung sino man ang bumubulong sa tenga ng Presidente na beware of the Ides of March, or April, or November, of December, is only whispering lies,” he said.
With the political climate “getting thermonuclear,” Recto said “everyone should be reminded that loud policy disagreements should be treated as healthy voices of democracy, and must therefore be welcomed.”
“When we start interpreting differences in opinion as destabilization moves, the exchange of ideas needed to better public policy or service suffers,” he said.
“This is the kind of labeling that destroys civil discourse and poisons dialogue,” Recto said.
He cautioned those in the administration to not quickly brand constructive criticism as part of a larger plot to replace the government.
“If a person, for example, simply wants to change a government regulation, it doesn’t follow that what he wants is to change the entire government,” he said.
Recto said realignments in the Senate structure won’t affect the individual stand of members on issues.
“There is no fixed majority-minority divide. The division expands or contracts depending on the issue. Sa isang isyu, 16 ang pabor. Sa ibang isyu, maaring 19 ang against,” he said.
“In the death penalty issue, for example, I see that some of the President’s staunchest defenders would rather be crucified than vote for it,” he said.
Recto said the Senate is an institution which has no tradition of one group exercising “political hegemony.”
“It has always been pluralist in outlook. It has always been a bulwark of free debate. It has always valued the contribution of the opposition as vital in the conduct of its business,” he said.