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  • When we say Congress, we refer to both houses of the legislative branch of government in the Philippines.
    Congressmen in the Upper House are called Senators
    Congressmen in the Lower House are called Representatives
  • Article VI, Sections 2-4. Many of these stipulations reaffirm Article II, Section 26.
    Note on Composition: Election at large = nationwide
    Age requirement on election day: stipulated so as to avoid ambiguity. It is important to remember that Ninoy Aquino ran into problems when he ran for Senator precisely because of the age requirement.
    Note on term of office: if a Senator resigns mid-term, it does not entitle him to say that his term was interrupted (i.e. it is still taken against his full term).
    This means that a Senator on his second term cannot resign before his term ends and claim that he is entitled to run for the same seat again
  • Article VI, Sections 5-7
    Legislative Districts (Art VI, Sec. 3)
    Based on size and contiguity of territory
    “Uniform and progressive ratio”
    Population of 250,000 = 1 Representative
    Party List: To incorporate sectoral groups (civil society)
    Party list reps need not fulfill the residency requirement
    Party list groups: Labor, peasant, urban poor, youth, indigenous cultural communities, women, etc.
    No religious groups
    Youth groups are exempt from the age requirement
  • Article VI, Section 9
    Regular election: Example was May 11, 2001. The seat vacated by Guingona (?) had to be filled.
    Unexpired term
    Whoever is elected merely completes the term that was prematurely vacated.
    In a sense, therefore, this allows such persons to skirt the prohibitions as far as terms of office are concerned.
  • Article VI, Section 16
    Quorum: Minimum number of people for a meeting to be valid and binding.
    For Congress, majority is the basis, not majority of all members. The difference is that the former is more flexible (i.e. members who are out of the country or momentarily indisposed are not counted for quorum)
    A smaller number may meet to work out matters on a day-to-day basis
  • 1.) Article VI, Sections 17-19 (esp. 18)
    2.) Investigations in aid of legislation: Article VI, Section 21
    3.) Declaration of the existence of war and emergency powers: Article VI, Section 23
    4.) Treaties: Article VII, Section 21 (The Executive Branch)
    5.) Emergency Powers: Article VI, Section 23
  • 6.) Article VI, Sec. 24-5
    7.) and 8.) Article VI, Sec. 27
    9.) Article VI, Sec. 32
    10.) Article XVII, Sections 1-2
  • 1.) Article VI, Sec. 25
    2.) Article VI, Sec. 28 (4)3.) Article VI, Sec. 31
    4.) and 5.) Article III, Sec. 22

    1. 1. = =
    2. 2. = =
    3. 3. Principle of SEPARATION OF POWERS - each government branch is not permitted to encroach upon the powers confided to others. Arbitrary rule would result if the same body is to exercise all the powers of the government.
    4. 4. Principle of CHECKS AND BALANCES - authorizing a considerable amount of encroachment or checking by one branch in the affairs of the others. Each branch is given certain powers with which to check the others.    Pres.may disapprove bills enacted by Congress Congress may reject appointments by the Pres. Judiciary may declare unconstitutional laws enacted by the Congress
    5. 5. Overview Congress: the Legislative Branch of government in the Philippines Purpose, functions and structure of Congress Constitutional mandates with respect to Congress
    6. 6. The Legislative Branch From the Latin lex, legis meaning law The legislative branch broadly deals with the making, deliberation over, enactment, amendment and repealing of laws
    7. 7. Basic Structures There are two basic structures for legislative branches of government: 1. Unicameral The legislative branch consists of one chamber/house 1. Bicameral Legislative power is vested in two chambers/houses
    8. 8. The Philippine Congress The Philippine Congress is the country’s legislative department (Art. VI, Sec. 1) Congress is bicameral Upper House: Senate Lower House: House of Representatives N.B.: Senators are Congressmen
    9. 9. Supreme Court ruling on E.O. 464   Congress undoubtedly has a right to information from the executive branch whenever it is sought in aid of legislation. If the executive branch withholds such information on the ground that it is privileged, it must so assert it and state the reason therefor and why it must be respected. The infirm provisions of E.O. 464, however, allow the executive branch to evade congressional requests for information without need of clearly asserting a right to do so and/or proffering its reasons therefor. By the mere expedient of invoking said provisions, the power of Congress to conduct inquiries in aid of legislation is frustrated. That is impermissible.
    10. 10. Executive privilege covers all confidential or classified information between the President and the public officers, including:     Military, diplomatic and other national security matters which in the interest of national security should not be divulged Information between inter-government agencies prior to the conclusion of treaties and executive agreements Discussion in close-door Cabinet meetings Matters affecting national security and public order
    11. 11. ARTICLE VI Legislative Department
    12. 12. Legislative Power - power to make laws, and subsequently, to alter and repeal them
    13. 13. SECTION 1. The legislative power shall be vested in the Congress of the Philippines which shall consist of a Senate and a House of Representatives ….
    14. 14. SECTION 3. No person shall be a Senator unless he is a natural-born citizen of the Philippines, and, on the day of the election, is at least thirty-five years of age, able to read and write, a registered voter, and a resident of the Philippines for not less than two years immediately preceding the day of the election.
    15. 15. SECTION 4. The term of office of the Senators shall be six years … No Senator shall serve for more than two consecutive terms. Voluntary renunciation of the office for any length of time shall not be considered as an interruption in the continuity of his service for the full term for which he was elected.
    16. 16. Year Kind of Election 1992 Presidential Elections (1st Election after enactment of 1987 Constitution) 1995 1998 Midterm Elections Presidential Elections 2001 Midterm Elections 2004 2007 2010 2013 2016 2019 Presidential Elections Midterm Elections Presidential Elections Midterm Elections Presidential Elections Midterm Elections No. of Senators Elected 12 Term of Office Year End of Term 6 1998 12 3 1995 12 12 12 1 12 12 12 12 12 12 6 6 6 3 6 6 6 6 6 6 2001 2004 2007 2004 2010 2013 2016 2019 2022 2025
    17. 17. SECTION 5. (1) The House of Representatives shall be composed of not more than two hundred and fifty members… who shall be elected from legislative districts … (2) The party-list representatives shall constitute twenty per centum of the total number of representatives …labor, peasant, urban poor, indigenous cultural communities, women, youth, and such other sectors as may be provided by law..
    18. 18. 1.) District Representative – elected directly and personally from the territorial unit he is seeking to represent. 2.) Party-list Representative – chosen indirectly, through the party he represents, which is the one voted for by the electorate. This is to give an opportunity to weak sectors to have their voices heard.
    19. 19. SECTION 6. No person shall be a Member of the House of Representatives unless he is a naturalborn citizen of the Philippines and, on the day of the election, is at least twenty-five years of age, able to read and write, and, except the party-list representatives, a registered voter in the district in which he shall be elected, and a resident thereof for a period of not less than one year immediately preceding the day of the election.
    20. 20. SECTION 7. The Members of the House of Representatives shall be elected for a term of three years … No member of the House of Representatives shall serve for more than three consecutive terms…
    21. 21. Composition Qualifications Term of Office Senate 24 Senators elected at large Natural-born citizen At least 35 years old on election day Literate (can read and write) Registered voter Philippine resident for 2 years prior to election day 6 years Maximum: 2 terms
    22. 22. House of Representatives Composition Qualifications Term of Office 200 district reps, 50 party list Natural-born citizen At least 25 years old on election day Literate (can read and write) Registered voter of the district District resident for 1 year prior to election day 3 years Maximum: 3 terms
    23. 23. In Case of Vacancy… Vacancy can be filled through regular election Special elections can be called for the purpose of filling the vacancy In either circumstance, the one elected merely sits for the unexpired term
    24. 24. SECTION 11. A Senator or Member of the House of Representatives shall, in all offenses punishable by not more than six years imprisonment, be privileged from arrest while the Congress is in session. No Member shall be questioned nor be held liable in any other place for any speech or debate in the Congress or in any committee thereof.
    25. 25. FREEDOM from ARREST  offenses punishable by not more than six years imprisonment  while Congress is in session FREEDOM of SPEECH and DEBATE  remarks must be made in connection with the discharge of official duties.  while Congress is in session
    26. 26. Reason for the congressional privileges… To enable members of Congress to discharge their functions adequately and without fear. It is true that the privileges may be abused. However, the harm which would come from its abuse is considered slight compared to that which might arise if the privileges were not given.
    27. 27. SECTION 12. All Members of the Senate and the House of Representatives shall, upon assumption of office, make a full disclosure of their financial and business interests… They shall notify the House concerned of a potential conflict of interest that may arise from the filing of a proposed legislation of which they are authors.
    28. 28. SECTION 13. No Senator or Member of the House of Representatives may hold any other office or employment in the Government… during his term without forfeiting his seat. Neither shall he be appointed to any office which may have been created or the emoluments thereof increased during the term for which he was elected.
    29. 29. INCOMPATIBLE OFFICE Office which mat not be held by a member of a Congress outside the legislative department. There is a need for members to devote their time and attention to the discharge of their legislative responsibilities. FORBIDDEN OFFICE Office which a member of a Congress may not be a beneficiary by reason of being a participant when said office was created. Hence, a member of Congress shall not be eligible for appointment to such office even if he resigns.
    30. 30. SECTION 15. The Congress shall convene once every year on the fourth Monday of July for its regular session, …and shall continue to be in session for such number of days as it may determine until thirty days before the opening of its next regular session, exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays. The President may call a special session at any time.
    31. 31. SECTION 16. (1) The Senate shall elect its President and the House of Representatives its Speaker, by a majority vote of all its respective Members. (2) A majority of each House shall constitute a quorum to do business…
    32. 32. (3) Each House may determine the rules of its proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly behavior, and, with the concurrence of two-thirds of all its Members, suspend or expel a Member. A penalty of suspension, when imposed, shall not exceed sixty days. (4) Each House shall keep a Journal of its proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such parts as may, in its judgment, affect national security…
    33. 33. QUORUM - a number of membership which is competent to transact its business; is at least one-half plus one of the members of a body. LEGISATIVE JOURNAL - the official record of what is done and passed in a legislative assembly and the proceedings occurred from day to day.
    34. 34. SECTION 17. The Senate and the House of Representatives shall each have an Electoral Tribunal which shall be the sole judge of all contests relating to the election, returns, and qualifications of their respective Members…
    35. 35. SECTION 18. There shall be a Commission on Appointments… shall act on all appointments submitted to it…
    37. 37. SECTION 21. The Senate or the House of Representatives or any of its respective committees may conduct inquiries in aid of legislation in accordance with its duly published rules of procedure. The rights of persons appearing in or affected by such inquiries shall be respected.
    38. 38. SECTION 26. No bill passed by either House shall become a law unless it has passed three readings on separate days, and printed copies thereof in its final form have been distributed to its Members three days before its passage… Upon the last reading of a bill, no amendment thereto shall be allowed, and the vote thereon shall be taken immediately thereafter, and the yeas and nays entered in the Journal.
    39. 39. Steps in the Passage of a Bill First Reading - reading of the number, title of the measure and name of the author Second Reading - the bill is read in its entirety, scrutinized , debated upon and amended when desired Third Reading - members merely register their votes and explain them. No further debate is allowed.
    40. 40. SECTION 27. Every bill passed by the Congress shall, before it becomes a law, be presented to the President. If he approves the same, he shall sign it; otherwise, he shall veto it and return the same with his objections to the House where it originated, which shall enter the objections at large in its Journal and proceed to reconsider it. If, after such reconsideration, twothirds of all the Members of such House shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent…to the other House by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two-thirds of all the Members of that House, it shall become a law… The President shall communicate his veto of any bill to the House where it originated within thirty days after the date of receipt thereof; otherwise, it shall become a law as if he had signed it.
    41. 41. 3 ways when a bill may become a law 1.) When the President approves the bill by signing it. 2.) When the President vetoes the bill and the same is overriden by 2/3 votes of all the members of both Houses. 3.) When the President does not communicate his veto within 30 days after the date of receipt.
    42. 42. Structure and Dynamics Senate President and House Speaker elected by majority vote Other officers, procedures and the discipline of its members is at the discretion of each house Quorum: Majority Each House maintains a journal and record of proceedings Neither House can adjourn without the other’s consent while in session
    43. 43. Powers of Congress 1. 2. 3. 4. Appointment of Public Officials Legislative inquiry and investigation Declare the existence of a state of war Ratify the country’s international treaties (Senate) 5. Authorize limited emergency powers for the President
    44. 44. Powers of Congress 6. Approve the government budget 7. Undertake projects under the CDF 8. Propose, review, and adopt bills for enactment into law 9. Overturn a Presidential veto with respect to proposed legislation 10. Allow for referenda 11. Propose amendments to the constitution and call for a constitutional convention
    45. 45. Legislative Limitations Congress may not: 1. Increase appropriations recommended by the executive branch 2. Pass tax exemptions without the concurrence of a majority of its members 3. Grant titles of nobility 4. Pass ex post facto bills 5. Pass bills of attainder