VERA FILES FACT CHECK: NO U.S. bashing of Bongbong Marcos, as video claims

A YouTube video claiming that the United States (U.S.) government recently criticized former senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., continues to gain views from netizens three weeks after it was published. This is incorrect.

Uploaded by channel BANAT NEWS TV on Sept. 11, the video carried the headline: “JUST IN: HALA! AMERICA NAGPASAB0G ng PANINIRA kay BONGBONG MARCOS! PRES DUTERTE NAGULANTANG (Just in: Oh no! America unleashes attack against Bongbong Marcos! President Duterte is shocked)!”

The thumbnail showed unrelated photos of President Rodrigo Duterte, Marcos, former U.S. leader Donald Trump, and current U.S. President Joe Biden edited together with a text saying that the U.S. “will prevent” Marcos from pursuing the highest elective position in the Philippines.

Neither Trump nor Biden made comments towards Marcos recently, as shown by the lack of official record from the U.S. government or any report from legitimate media organizations.

BANAT NEWS TV’s video cited an Aug. 6 report by’s Interaksyon regarding a documentary on the Marcoses’ ill-gotten wealth. It was produced by U.S.-based media company Bloomberg.

Quoted in the article was Robert Swift, an American human rights lawyer who championed the class action suit filed against the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos Sr. over “the alleged torture, summary execution, and engineered disappearance” that happened under his regime.

In the documentary, after being informed that Bongbong Marcos will run in the upcoming polls, Swift said he is “confident” that some of the ill-gotten money of the Marcoses will “find its way into the 2022 elections in the Philippines.”

No official source shows any affiliation between Swift and the U.S. government.

Aside from the supposed objection of America in the younger Marcos’ bid for the presidency, BANAT NEWS TV’s video also made three other inaccurate claims: that Marcos confirmed his presidential run in 2022, that his running mate will be Duterte, and that his family never stole anything from the Philippines during the term of his father.

All of these are false.

Marcos has yet to confirm his presidential bid for 2022

Marcos declared his intention to run in the 2022 elections as early as January 2020 and reiterated this just last Sept. 1. However, he has yet to proclaim categorically which position he will be vying for.

On Sept. 24, after the Kilusang Bagong Lipunan — the political party established by his late father — officially endorsed Marcos for the presidency in next year’s polls, the former senator shared he is “very close” to coming to a decision regarding his electoral bid.

Duterte is not Marcos’ running mate

It is also not true that Marcos’ official running mate is Duterte, who on Sept. 17 officially accepted the vice-presidential nomination of his party Partido Demokratiko Pilipino–Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban).

There has been no pronouncement from either camp confirming the supposed tandem. PDP-Laban also endorsed Sen. Christopher “Bong” Go, not Marcos, as its presidential bet — an offer the senator declined.

Court rulings prove Marcoses’ ill-gotten wealth

Lastly, at least three Supreme Court (SC) decisions and two Sandiganbayan rulings could belie BANAT NEWS TV’s claim that the Marcoses never stole anything from the Philippines:

BANAT NEWS TV’s false video came just three days after Bongbong Marcos expressed confidence in defeating Vice President Leni Robredo in a “one-on-one fight” in next year’s elections.

It has been viewed over 173,000 times and could have reached more than 85,000 netizens, according to social media monitoring tool CrowdTangle.

A reupload of the video by Facebook page PH Batang Maynila has 11,000 views and around 1,300 engagements from users.

(Editor’s Note: VERA Files has partnered with Facebook to fight the spread of disinformation. Find out more about this partnership and our methodology.)

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