Pakistan is awash with black money now, as always, and quite a big chunk of it goes into buying political influence. And nothing fills this bill better than to be a member of the Senate of Pakistan, a position which on mere touch opens doors to the country's highest offices. Unlike election to the assemblies, both National and provincial, for this, one doesn't have to go from door to door and spend nights on election trail. The briefcase does all the talking, and result comes from the secret ballot. This then is a high-stakes ballgame, played every third year when half of the members vacate the mahogany-panelled chamber making way for the newcomers. How many of the newcomers win their way to the Senate courtesy the briefcases no one bothers to know, and the newly-composed upper house gets going. But this was not going to be anymore. Somehow, two of the principal political leaderships thrown up by the 2013 general elections, Nawaz Sharif and Imran Khan, tend to portray themselves as the magnets which brought victories to their parties. They want to decide who should be elected as Senator, as against constitutional position that it is the concerned provincial assembly members' exclusive prerogative. This is their common fear, and hence their unanimous call to amend the constitution so that there is open voting in the provincial assemblies for the election of Senators. They say such a move would stop horse-trading and add to the much-desired electoral transparency, exposing their distorted interpretation of both 'transparency' and 'horse-trading'. In electoral context, transparency doesn't mean you should know who voted for whom but just the opposite of it, and it is simply unacceptable to dub a voter's freedom to follow his judgement and conscience on a certain issue as horse-trading. We believe it bodes well for the cause of provincial autonomy that other main political parties have denied support to the proposed 22nd constitutional amendment and thus saved federalism from obsessive control of autocratic political mindset.