Claim: Former senator and 2019 senatorial candidate Jinggoy Estrada slammed opposition senators during a campaign rally by saying he filed hundreds of bills during his time at the Senate.
In response to criticisms casting doubts on the ability of actors like him to serve in the Senate, Estrada said he has "filed 600 bills" during his term. He then took a shot at opposition senators, wondering how many Senate bills they have filed.
The Philippine Daily Inquirer reported on Monday, February 18, that Estrada made the remark during a campaign sortie that day with the administration-allied Hugpong ng Pagbabago slate in Vigan City, Ilocos Sur.
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The facts: Estrada has indeed filed or co-authored over 600 bills from 2013 to 2016 alone, but only a few of these bills have been signed into law. More than 500 of them, or 83%, remained pending at the Senate committee level, while the rest remained at different stages of the legislative process.
Estrada, a son of former president Joseph Estrada, was elected senator in 2004, and served two 6-year terms until 2016. His terms spanned 4 Congresses – the numbered designation of 3-year legislative terms – from the 13th Congress to the 16th Congress.
In the 16th Congress, or from 2013 to 2016, Estrada filed 633 bills, according to the Philippine Senate website. These include bills he introduced, along with the consolidated or substituted bills where he is a co-author.
A majority of these, or a total of 527 bills, remained pending at different Senate committees. These constituted 83% of the bills he filed or co-authored in the 16th Congress.
On the other hand, 21 Senate bills where Estrada was listed as a co-author had been enacted into law. In addition, 26 bills Estrada filed were consolidated with, or substituted by, these bills that became law, or were taken into consideration for them.
Two more Senate bills filed by Estrada were considered in other bills that became law, but he was not listed as a co-author of these approved bills.
The rest, which he either filed or co-authored, had the following statuses:
Historically, Estrada has been prolific in filing or co-authoring many bills, but many of them have stayed at the committee level. The Senate website also shows that some of Estrada's bills were refiled in each Congress, with varying results in the legislative process.
– Michael Bueza/Rappler.com