Missing a great start




The Manila Times



COMMUNICATION is key in presidential politics. It clearly sets the national agenda, and crafting presidential directives becomes succinct with proper use of framing and priming. Framing is an extension of agenda setting, the “selection of a restricted number of thematically related attributes for inclusion in the media agenda when a particular object is discussed.” Priming, on the other hand, is “the impact that agenda-setting can have on the way individuals evaluate public officials by influencing thematic areas or issues that individuals use to form these evaluations.” The arc of any presidential communication can take three days for full impact, assuming the message has been defined and broken down to understandable pieces and amplified via quad media. On June 30, 2022, the 17th President took his oath of office and the inaugural speech was spot-on from language, diction, timber and cadence. The oratorical high was indeed a fresh start. There were goosebumps all over because the stirring delivery echoed that of the elder Ferdinand E. Marcos Sr. in his 1965 address. It should have taken a good three days of exposure had the communications team of President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. been on deck not as participants, but orchestrating its release from translating to Tagalog and major dialects, considering the major part of the inaugural was delivered in English. Clearly, the audience was a bigger group outside of those in attendance, and only three quotes and sentences were for class DE. These three were: “At pinakinggan ko ang tinig ninyo na ang sinisigaw ay ‘Pagkakaisa…Pagkakaisa… Pagkakaisa!” — 4th paragraph; “Pangarap niyo ay pangarap ko” — 26th paragraph; “Sa pangarap na maging mapayapa ang ating bansa! Ang pangarap niyo ay pangarap ko! Sa pangarap na maging maunlad ang ating bansa! Ang pangarap niyo ay pangarap ko! At sa pangarap na maging mas masinang ang kinabukasan natin at ng ating mga anak, ang pangarap niyo ay pangarap ko!”— 28th paragraph. There were no talking heads to explain the policy pronouncements laid out or even just discuss the broad strokes of the inaugural address. The transcripts came late, and even the official photo of the incoming President was not properly handled. Publicity materials came after the whole inaugural, and the livestreaming was not managed well to highlight the strengths and downgrade the weaker points. By afternoon, what was viraling were all about the First Lady, and by early news, it was all about the crowds that did not come, the street party that had more giveaways showed an early schism, those at Mendiola and those inside Malacañang. By July 1, the buzz was on the giveaways for the inaugural dinner despite the mass and the anniversary of the Air Force. By noon of the first working day, the presidential veto became the subject of hushed discussions among various circles and by evening, actual copies of the presidential veto and Memorandum Circular 1 were distributed like wildfire. From the looks of it, a presidential veto was issued with the date stamped July 1, appearing therefore that the transmittal and the veto message were already done. The speculation was, was the letter made prior to the change of administration or at the start? Certainly, the president can exercise the constitutionally granted power, but what is there to veto? The 18th Congress went on sine die adjournment from July 4 to 24, 2022. Though the Senate is a continuing body, the House is not. Hence, Congress for all intents and purposes has ended. This is crucial in looking at the first veto of PFRMJ. Technically, the 19th Congress has not been constituted. Even the addressees (Senate President and Speaker) were not named in the transmittal. What was PFRMJ vetoing then? House Bill (HB) 7483 was filed on Aug. 25, 2020 by Rep. Jose Antonio Sy-Alvarado and co-authored by Representatives Pancho, Silverio, Villarica and Albano (A). Two others co-authored the measure, Representatives Robes and Salvador-Tambunting. Sy-Alvarado, Pancho, Silverio, Villarica and Robes are all Bulacan representatives. It was referred to the committee on economic affairs on Aug. 25, 2020 and secondarily referred to the committee on trade and industry. Committee Report 468 was submitted on Sept. 2, 2020, recommending its approval as substitution for HB 7483. HB 7575 was approved on second reading on Sept. 9, 2020 and on third reading by Sept. 15, 2020, with 205 voting in favor of the measure, six voting no and one abstention. The measure was transmitted to the Senate on Sept. 17, 2020. The Senate passed it on May 26, 2022 with amendments. The House agreed to the amendments on May 31, 2022. The House concurred with Senate amendments received on June 1, 2022. The enrolled copy was received by the Malacañang Records Office on June 3, 2022 and transmitted to President Rodrigo Duterte on June 3, 2022. PRRD ends his term at noon of June 30. The 18th Congress adjourned beginning June 4. Per Article 6, Section 27 (1) of the Constitution, “xxx The President shall communicate his veto of any bill to the House where it