Now that the President has clarified his statement, it’s time to move on from the ugly Lopez episode in the Commission on Appointments.
While I do not regret my rejection vote as I will always maintain that I did the right thing based on my own evaluation and appreciation of the confirmation proceedings, I’m sorry that eventually, I was forced to bring out in the open the reasons why I decided to reject her confirmation.
I just felt that I needed to set the record straight, owing to the massive social media bashing and overreaction by the uninformed among our people who got carried away by massive disinformation and the noise created by what could have been a routine exercise of our constitutional mandate.
While I am sure the president’s “money lobby talks” comment does not apply to me and I have already cited my reasons for rejecting Ms. Lopez, I think it is unfortunate if not inappropriate and uncalled for. It is a sweeping assault not only on the integrity of the members of the CA who voted for rejection but the CA itself, being an independent constitutional body.
I am almost sure, those members who are his staunchest allies in both houses of Congress, will not cast their votes without first seeking his guidance. Just to be clear, I am not referring to myself in this regard.
Confirmation of a presidential appointee or nominee, especially a Cabinet member, by the Commission on Appointments always follows two basic criteria: fitness and qualification. Passion and enthusiasm do not automatically translate into the two criteria.
Ms. Regina Paz Lopez obviously has a lot of passion and enthusiasm, but evidently, in my own observation and analysis of her performance during the entire confirmation proceedings, she is not fit for the job nor is she qualified. Worse, she admittedly arrogated unto herself the authority which is not prescribed under the existing laws of the land. That makes her potentially dangerous as a department head. Further, she has authoritarian tendencies.
On a personal note, I hate being intimidated and pressured in the performance of my duties as a legislator and member of the CA. Her supporters can speculate all they want why I voted to reject her confirmation but these are my reasons and nothing more.