RH Bill deadlocked at Senate?

Posted at 09/06/12 6:59 PM

MANILA, Philippines - The Reproductive Health (RH) bill has as many supporters as opponents in the Senate, based on some senators' unofficial count.

Sen. Jinggoy Estrada, who has yet to make a stand on the controversial measure, said a colleague told him 10 senators will vote for the RH bill while 10 will vote against it.

Three senators, including him, are undecided. The other two are running for reelection in 2013.

Estrada did not identify the source of his numbers, but said he heard the information from a fellow senator while they were in the executive lounge on Wednesday.

"Pinag-uusapan namin kung ano ang bilang. I was just quiet in one corner. I was listening to the discussion of other senators," he said.

The numbers are based on how senators interpellated the bill's sponsors and their "body language," Estrada added.

Estrada said he will make a stand on the measure only after hearing all the arguments and seeing all the amendments.

He said that he, too, will propose changes to the bill, but did not elaborate.

More than a year after it was sponsored on the Senate floor, the period of amendments for the RH bill began on Wednesday, September 5. The bill's sponsors vowed to put it to a vote within the year.