A RESOLUTION will be circulated among senators to gauge support for Senate President Vicente C. Sotto III’s continuing leadership in the chamber in the 18th Congress, Senator Panfilo M. Lacson said Friday.

“Nag-draft ako ng resolution. Para magkaalaman sa kasamahan namin sino ang alanganin,” Mr. Lacson said in an interview with DzMM.(I drafted a resolution, so we would all know who among our colleagues do not fully support [Mr. Sotto].)

The pronouncement followed speculations of a possible leadership change in the Senate when the 18th Congress opens on July 22.

“Ngayon may 1-2 na baguhang papasok na panay ang parinig may tinutulak na iba. E simple lang yan. Galing ka rin diyan. Mahanap ka 11 kasama kayong dalawa at sa iyo na. Kung wala kayong 13, ganoon lang kasimple,” Senator Lacson said. (There are one or two newcomers who are hinting that they’re supporting somebody else. It’s simple….If you two find 11 more, then [the leadership is all] yours. If you don’t have the 13 [votes], it’s that simple.)

Mr. Lacson said the draft resolution may also be signed by incoming senators who support Mr. Sotto.

Senator Emmanuel Joel J. Villanueva, for his part, said in a mobile message to reporters: “We continue to support the leadership of Senate President Tito Sotto. We look up to his manner of managing the legislative work of the Senate, especially the way he works both sides of the aisle. He has always kept the spirit of fairness and collegiality in crafting laws.”

“The Senate as an institution will always be (an) independent constitutional body, contrary to some who fear otherwise, and no doubt the leadership of SP Sotto will maintain this independence in the 18th Congress.” — Charmaine A. Tadalan