THE Senate gallery in the ongoing impeachment trial of Chief Justice Renato Corona is delighted with the “rock star” role of two octogenarians, presiding officer Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile, 88, and chief defense counsel and former Justice Serafin Cuevas, 83.
Enrile is hailed by both prosecutors and defenders for his even-handed, in some cases too liberal, handling of the three-week old proceedings.
Cuevas’ cogent logic and flawless delivery of his legal arsenal appear to disconcert House lawyers, who said they relish the public perception of being underdogs.
Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago is another gallery favorite.
When she rises to make a point, at the expense of the object of her ire, she evokes laughter from the crowd (which is not allowed but happens anyway).
In one exchange, she sneered at her fellow Ilongo and lead prosecutor Rep. Niel Tupas, who defers to her for the most part.
“Tumataas ang blood pressure ko sa inyong kakulangan,” she blurted out, saying her BP rises at the prosecution’s lack of preparation and so forth.
If Miriam is seen as being harsh to the prosecutors, Sen. Franklin Drilon, however, appears to take the cudgel for them, especially when witnesses seem to stray from the prosecution line.
Corona is so miffed with Drilon he wants to inhibit him from the trial.
Of course, Drilon won’t do that.
Corona also wants four other senators to similarly bow out.
That won’t happen too.
Even his motion to the Supreme Court to stop the Senate from trying him is not going anywhere, in my opinion.
If the SC rules in favor, that will create a constitutional crisis indeed.
Besides, the trial is well underway and the process should proceed on its course, preferably with speed and without undue delay.
If the prosecution thinks they can nail Corona with just one of the eight articles of impeachment, then do it.
Remember, Congress goes on recess March 23.
Will it be able to wrap up the trial on or before then?
Rep. Rodolfo Fariñas, a member of the prosecution, doubts it.
He took a jab at some of his fellow prosecutors who want their “15 minutes of fame” on national television.
Too bad TFC viewers on the East Coast can’t tune in on the live coverage due to time difference.
Congress holds daily sessions Monday to Thursday, in the afternoon, which is early morning Eastern Standard Time.
But TFC and GMA recap the session a day after.
Some feel it’s not worth losing sleep for.
And they may be right.