Biden calls Bongbong Marcos to congratulate him on presidential win, questions about contempt order in U.S. go unanswered

·2 min read

Having garnered over 31 million votes and nearly 60 percent of the ballots cast, the victory of former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. in Monday’s presidential election seems inevitable, even though the official canvassing of votes has yet to conclude.

With Marcos Jr. presumed to be the winner of the election, world leaders are already lining up to congratulate him — including US President Joe Biden, who gave the presumptive president-elect a call yesterday morning, Marcos spokesman Vic Rodriguez confirmed.

The White House also confirmed that a call between Biden and Marcos Jr took place in a statement.

“President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. spoke today today with President-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. of the Philippines to congratulate him on his election. President Biden underscored that he looks forward to working with the President-elect to continue strengthening the U.S.-Philippine Alliance, while expanding bilateral cooperation on a wide range of issues, including the fight against COVID-19, addressing the climate crisis, promoting broad-based economic growth, and respect for human rights.”

Marcos Jr.’s win marks a historic comeback for the Marcos’ family image after the 1986 People Power Revolution toppled his father, Ferdinand Marcos Sr. and his 21-year regime.

Biden’s courtesy call with the presumptive president-elect marks an interesting development in the Marcoses’ history with the United States. Bongbong, in particular, faces a standing contempt order in the US worth US$353 million issued by the District Court of Hawaii in 2011 for not answering a judgement against Marcos Sr in a 1995 human rights class action lawsuit.

As executors of Marcos Sr.’s estate, Marcos Jr. and his mother Imelda are liable.

Marcos Jr.’s spokesman Rodriguez ignored questions by Rappler reporters on the presumptive president-elect’s standing contempt order, asking how Marcos Jr. would be able to travel to the United States even as chief diplomat.

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