Once more a meeting of the Nacionalistas in the house of Celestino Rodriguez. Quezon tells me he cannot help admire Osmeña’s serenity because, when he visited Osmeña at midnight last night to exchange views on the underhanded blow from the Democratas, he found Osmeña optimistic and even smiling.
In truth, Osmeña has now begun to work seriously, and he was not surprised to see the change in the Nacionalista representatives. In the meeting, strong words were crossed between Osmeña and Lozano. Osmeña delivered a brilliant and heated speech which produced an excellent impression. The vote was almost unanimous.
In the afternoon, at 1:30, Quezon came to the house to read to me the statement he is thinking of releasing before signing the Pacto de Inteligencia. In the evening, Roxas was elected Speaker.
Meeting of the Nacionalistas in the house of Celestino Rodriguez. The situation begins to improve. In the evening, the Democratas gave the fatal blow, voting solidly for Mariano Jesus Cuenco for Speaker.
In the morning, a call from Quezon, discouraged. He suspects that Osmeña is not helping him as much as he should. He makes an appointment for me to see him in the Intendencia Building. From there, we go to Osmeña’s office. There, Quezon begins to weep. “You have deserted me,” he tells Osmeña, wiping away his tears with a handkerchief. The situation is once more very difficult.
The meeting of the Comité de Intelligencia under my chairmanship. The platform drafted in my house last Sunday was presented and approved; but, upon being submitted to the meeting of the Nacionalistas, was disapproved, or rather, approved but with amendments.
All afternoon, Quezon and Osmeña were here at home preparing the terms of the political fusion. The discussions were very interesting. In the beginning, Quezon said he believed everything was bound to fail. There were mutual explanations. Osmeña, as always, smiling and observant.
[Note: In the book, this entry is only labeled “October,” and precedes the extracts of the October 22-26, 1922 diary entries reproduced in the same book; for the purpose of this website this entry has been assigned the date October 1]
The fight between the Nacionalistas and the Colectivistas is becoming very interesting. Quezon and Osmeña are once more playing the major roles. In view of the fact that no party has obtained a clear majority in any of the two chambers, the Democratas are now making love to Osmeña. The plan is to form a coalition between the Nacionalistas and the Democratas against Quezon. There are many fingers in the pie, it is said. Some belong to local Americans, among whom is an Auditor who has examined the accounts of the Manila Railroad and found there anomalies. Midnight meetings are being held with this American present, together with Sumulong, and several others. General Wood himself is suspected to be in on the plot.
Quezon has finally won victory for his party. All our efforts and those of the Speaker proved useless to stop the secession. This split has been worked for years, and planned behind the back of Osmeña. Technically, it is a bloodless coup d’etat. Quezon took advantage of the Speaker’s position to undermine him and pull him down. When the Jones Law was implemented by Governor-General Harrison, it was agreed to have a Filipino leader in the administration who would unobtrusively win away political powers from the Governor-General for the benefit of the Filipinos.
Osmeña fulfilled this assignment. For all practical purposes, he was the Governor-General. The most important matters of state weighed on his shoulders. The Governor-General could take no step without consulting him. Thus, Osmeña became so burdened with the study of important matters of government that he was forced to abandon the details of political party administration, a field which was immediately taken over and cultivated by Quezon.
The circumstance, besides, of Quezon’s being in the Senate and of his speaking English well, gave him the opportunity to deal the final blow with the aid mainly of the English speaking younger generation. Quezon took advantage of this advantage. The Speaker tried to heal the breach, even going so far as to give up all political power in favor of unity. As usual, Quezon remained indecisive until the last minute. We could all notice that he was under tension. But he had made serious commitments with the separatists. Thus, unity was sacrificed for them.
Quezon retained a greater part of the Nacionalistas who were formerly loyal to Osmeña.