The Jokers in the Senate


Many Filipinos said that of all Showbiz senators in the Philippine Senate, Sen. Manuel Lapid is a joke. But don’t you know that U.S. Senate also has one, he is Sen. Al Franken, Democrat from Minnesota.

Sen. Al Franken, Democrat from Minnesota.

He is now in the news for making theatrical gestures and whispered under his breath when Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Republican-Kentucky) laid out his opposition to Elena Kagan’s Supreme Court nomination.  Al Franken appeared moving around in his chair, gasping and rolling his eyes.  The Kentucky senator complained of distraction and even went up to the former comedian and said “This isn’t ‘Saturday Night Live,’ Al.”  Sen. Al Franken later apologized to the head of the (GOP) Grand Old Party for being rude.  

Elena Kagan  however was confirmed as the newest Supreme Court Justice of Obama administration.

Franken first achieved prominence as a writer and performer for the television show Saturday Night Live since its inception in 1975 before moving on to writing and acting in films and TV shows. He then became a political commentator, author of five best-selling books, and host of a radio show Air America. Franken was sworn in to the Senate on July 7, 2009.

Senator Franken’s first piece of legislation was the Service Dogs for Veterans Act. A service dog is a type of assistance, specifically trained to help people who have disabilities.

On the other hand our very own “Lito Lapid” is a famous actor, tried his luck in politics by running as Vice Governor in his province of Pampanga then governor before he became senator in 2004.  

Sen. Manuel Lapid & U.S. Pres. Obama

He earned the name “joker” in the Senate when he filed a bill that requires law to be written in Filipino and wants Senate Rules of Procedures be in Tagalog or Filipino language.  According to his fellow Senators, they can use Tagalog but it doesn’t mean it can be utilized for the business in the Hall of the Senate.

The latest Lapid Joke was when  the Senator asked former Philippine President GLoria Arroyo to include him on her U.S. trip to have photo opportunity with  U.S. President Barack Obama.

Sen. Lapid only finished high school due to poverty, the reason why he decides on becoming an extra for the movies. He was first a stuntman before he became famous action star.

Contrary to Sen. Al Franken who only authored one (1) law, Sen. Manuel Lapid  have three (3) famous bills enacted into law as Senator (2004-2010), naming “Arnis” as the Philippines National Sport, secondly a law that grants legal assistance to the poor and gives lawyers tax credits for legal services rendered to poor clients and as co-author of the Cheaper Medicines Law.

Let’s just say, they are the Jokers in the Senate but they have very useful piece of legislation.

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