Sample final exam in political law


Below are 17 questions (with sub-questions) in political law. These have been randomly selected from previous bar examination questions. Test yourself.

QUESTION I. Is “people power” recognized under the 1987 Constitution? Explain fully. (2003)

QUESTION II. The City of Cebu passed an ordinance proclaiming the expropriation of a ten (10) hectare property of C Company, which property is already a developed commercial center. The City proposed to operate the commercial center in order to finance a housing project for city employees in the vacant portion of the said property. The ordinance fixed the price of the land and the value of the improvements to be paid C Company on the basis of the prevailing land value and cost of construction.

(1) As counsel for C Company, give two objections to the City of Cebu’s action.
(2) As judge, decide the case. (2002)

QUESTION III. A law was passed against drunken driving. Under the legislation, police authorities may ask any driver to take a "breathalyzer test", wherein the driver exhales several times into a device which can determine whether he has been driving under the influence of alcohol. The results of the test can be used, in any legal proceeding against him. Furthermore, declaring that the issuance of a driver's license gives rise only to a privilege to drive motor vehicles on public roads, the law provides that a driver who refuses to take the test shall be automatically subject to a 90-day suspension of his driver's license.

Cite two possible constitutional objections and resolve each by explaining fully and discussing how such infirmities can be cured. (1992)

QUESTION IV. How may the following be removed from office?

(1) Senators & Congressmen;
(2) Judges of lower courts; and
(3) Officers and employees in the Civil Service? (1993)

QUESTION V. A, while serving imprisonment for estafa and upon recommendation of the Board of Pardons and Parole, was granted pardon by the President on condition that he should not again violate any penal law of the land. Later, the Board of Pardons and Parole recommended to the President the cancellation of the pardon granted him because A had been charged with estafa on 20 counts and was convicted of the offense charged although he took an appeal therefrom which was still pending. As recommended, the President canceled the pardon he had granted to A. A was thus arrested and imprisoned to serve the balance of his sentence in the first case. A claimed in his petition for habeas corpus filed in court that his detention was illegal because he had not yet been convicted by final judgment and was not given a chance to be heard before he was recommitted to prison.

Is A's argument valid? (1997)

QUESTION VI. Pedro Reyes is an incumbent Vice-Mayor of Quezon City. He intends to run in the regular elections for the position of City Mayor of Quezon City whose incumbent mayor would have fully served three consecutive terms by 2004. Would Pedro Reyes have to give up his position as Vice-Mayor

(1) Once he files his certificate of candidacy; or
(2) When the campaign period starts; or
(3) Once and if he is proclaimed winner in the election; or
(4) Upon his assumption to the elective office; or
(5) None of the above.

Choose the correct answer and discuss.

If Pedro Reyes were, instead, an incumbent Congressman of Quezon City, who intends to seek the mayoralty post in Quezon City, would your choice of answer in no.(1) above be the same? If not, which would be your choice? (2003) VII. Is cronyism a legal ground for the impeachment of the President? Explain. (2000)

QUESTION VIII. Can the Judge-Advocate General of the Armed Forces of the Philippines be appointed a Trustee of the Government Service Insurance System? Explain. (1996)

QUESTION IX. State your general understanding of the primary sources and subsidiary sources of international law, giving an illustration of each. (2003)

QUESTION X. Discuss what the baseline method is, what it is for and why it is constitutional. (2013)

QUESTION XI. Distinguish between pocket veto, item veto and heckler’s veto. (2010)

QUESTION XII. The 1 st Legislative District of South Cotabato is composed of General Santos and three municipalities including Polomolok. During the canvassing proceedings before the District Board of Canvassers in connection with the 2007 congressional elections, candidate MP objected to the certificate of canvass for Polomolok on the ground that it was obviously manufactured, submitting as evidence the affidavit of mayoralty candidate of Polomolok.

The Certificate of canvass for General Santos was likewise objected to by MP on the basis of the confirmed report of the local NAMFREL that 10 elections returns from non-existent precincts were included in the certificate. MP moved that the certificate of canvass for General Santos be corrected to exclude the results from the non-existent precincts. The District Board of Canvassers denied both objections and ruled to include the certificate of canvass.

May MP appeal the rulings to the COMELEC? Explain. (2008)

QUESTION XIII. Lawrence is a Filipino computer expert based in Manila who invented a virus that destroys all the files stored in a computer. Assume that in May 2005, this virus spread all over the world and caused $50 million in damage to property in the United States, and that in June 2005, he was criminally charged before United States courts under their anti-hacker law. Assume that in July 2005, the Philippines adopted its own anti-hacker law, to strengthen existing sanctions already provided against damage to property. The United States has requested the Philippines to extradite him to US courts under the RP-US Extradition Treaty.

(a) Is the Philippines under an obligation to extradite Lawrence? State the applicable rule and its rationale.
(b) Explain the effect of extradition request before or after criminalization of the act subject of the request. (2007)

QUESTION XIV. Candida has been administratively charged of immorality for openly living with Manuel, a married man. Candida argues that her conjugal arrangement with Manuel fully conforms with their religious beliefs and with the teachings of their church. In resolving whether Candida should be administratively penalized, which is the best test to apply? (2012)

QUESTION XV. What is the difference between judicial due process and administrative due process? Discuss fully. (PJP)

QUESTION XVI. An ordinance prohibits "notorious street gang members" from loitering in public places. The police are to disperse them or, if they refuse, place them under arrest. The ordinance enumerates which police officers can make arrest and defines street gangs, membership in them, and public areas. Challenge the ordinance. (2012)

QUESTION XVII. Several citizens, unhappy with the proliferation of families dominating the political landscape, decided to take matters into their own hands. They proposed to come up with a people’s initiative defining political dynasties. They started a signature campaign for the purpose of coming up with a petition for that purpose. Some others expressed misgivings about a people’s initiative for the purpose of proposing amendments to the Constitution, however. They cited the Court’s decision in Santiago v. Commission on Elections, 270 SCRA 106 (1997), as authority for their position that there is yet no enabling law for s uch purpose. On the other hand, there are also those who claim that the individual votes of the justices in Lambino v. Commission on Elections, 505 SCRA 160 (2006), mean that Santiago’s pronouncement has effectively been abandoned. If you were consulted by those behind the new attempt at a people’s initiative, how would you advise them? (2014)

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