Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile (Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism)
THIRD IN LINE. Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile (Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism)

The Senate was once dubbed as a training ground for the Presidency; thus, the significance of the esteemed position of Senate President is not lost on the 24-member Senate, who distinctly eye the post that is third in line in the presidential succession.

Senators simply cannot get enough of elections since even as early as last week there have been talks on who will be the next Senate President.

Incumbent Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile, 86, has announced his retirement from the said position.

The rules are simple: to lead the congress’s upper chamber, a senator must have at least 13 votes, a simple majority.

However, getting those 13 votes will prove to be a lot tougher now since there will only be 22 senators left after Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III vacates his seat when he is expected to assume the presidency in June (Aquino is currently the presidential frontrunner in the official national election canvassing).

In addition to Aquino’s expected departure, the seat held by Alfredo Lim remains vacant. Lim, elected Senator in 2004, was voted Manila City mayor in 2007.

It will eventually be a numbers game for contenders seeking the senate presidency via multi-partisan alliances that are, at best, temporary and unwieldy.


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