Buencamino writes political commentaries for Action for Economic Reforms, where he is a fellow. This piece was published in the September 23, 2009 edition of the Business Mirror, page A6. 

“Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.”Mark Twain

So what if Rep. Mikey Arroyo said his money came from unspent campaign funds that he did not report in his 2004 and 2007 campaign contributions and expenses statement to the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

So what if he said his wealth came from wedding gifts that he never reported to tax authorities.

So what if Mikey’s Foster City property is still in his wife’s name and not, as he claims, under Beach Way Llc, a limited liability company not registered anywhere.

So what if he claimed he was new to filing SALNs (Statement of Assets and Liabilities and Net worth) in 2004 even if he filed his first in 1992 when he was a staffer for his senator mother.

So what if he claimed he amended his SALN even if investigative journalists found no records of his amended SALNs anywhere.

So what, so what, so what.

The real source of Mikey’s wealth is not the problem. The real issue is who are his role models.

In 2004, in a live television interview with the late Max Soliven, Gloria Arroyo, after pointing out that making deposits under fictitious names was not illegal at the time, said the money in the Jose Pidal account came from unspent contributions to her 1998 vice-presidential campaign. But that’s not the good part.

The good part is Mrs. Arroyo’s report to the Comelec. Her vice- presidential campaign contributions and expenses were as follows, “Campaign Contributions: P50,211,432.00/Campaign Expenses: P50,211,432.00 ”
So where do you think Mikey might have gotten the idea to cite non-existent unspent campaign contributions as the source of his wealth?

From 1992 to 2004 the joint SALNs of Mikey’s parents did not include four of their California properties.
There were two residences, one in Daly City and the other in South San Francisco. Both were bought in July 1992 within a week of each other, transferred to an Arroyo firm, LTA, on the same day, June 18, 1998, and then sold in Dec 1998 (Daly City house) and March 1999 (South San Francisco unit).

Two others were buildings in downtown San Francisco. One was bought four months after the houses were acquired, transferred to LTA also in June 1998 and sold a year later. The other was also transferred to LTA in June 1998 and sold three months later.

The Arroyo couple said they didn’t declare the properties and the transactions because they were only trustees for Ignacio Arroyo, the younger brother of Mike.

However, Bulatlat.com reported in May, 2005 :

“But the documents gathered show that the filing of LTA Realty Corporation in the Office of the Secretary of State of California was under the name of Mike Arroyo and the properties acquired and sold were done in the names of himself and wife now President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.”

Now where could Mikey have got the idea to claim that Beach Way Llc. owns the Foster City home when it is actually registered in his wife’s name?

Every child needs a role model. Mikey is lucky to have two.