2014 (Political Law) Bar Exam Questions: Question 4

[Answer/discuss the question below. Or see 2014 bar exam Political Law Instructions; 2014 Political Law Questions: 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30; See also 2014 Bar Exam: Information, Discussions, Tips, Questions and Results]

IV.

Beauty was proclaimed as the winning candidate for the position of Representative in the House of Representatives three (3) days after the elections in May. She then immediately took her oath of office. However, there was a pending disqualification case against her, which case was eventually decided by the COMELEC against her 10 days after the election. Since she has already been proclaimed, she ignored that decision and did not bother appealing it. The COMELEC then declared in the first week of June that its decision holding that Beauty was not validly elected had become final. Beauty then went to the Supreme Court questioning the jurisdiction of the COMELEC claiming that since she had already been proclaimed and had taken her oath of office, such election body had no more right to come up with a decision – that the jurisdiction had already been transferred to the House of Representatives Electoral Tribunal. How defensible is the argument of Beauty? (4%)

5 comments

  1. The Court has invariably held that once a winning candidate has been proclaimed, taken his oath, and assumed office as a Member of the House of Representatives, the COMELEC’s jurisdiction over election contests relating to his election, returns, and qualifications ends, and the HRET’s own jurisdiction begins. The key point is that Beauty has not yet assumed office and thus, jusrisdiction is still within the Comelec.

  2. The argument of Beauty is not tenable. Jurisdiction is still with the Comelec and not with the HRET. For the HRET to assume jurisdiction over the case, Beauty must have been proclaimed, took her oath and assumed her office. In the case at hand, Beauty has not yet assumed her office. Thus, Jurisdiction still lies with the Comelec and Beauty lost her right to appeal.

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