Former Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. is open to running for vice president again in 2022, and the ruling PDP-Laban said he is welcome to join the party.
"I want to maintain my presence in the national level," Marcos said Friday in a forum organized by the National Press Club of the Philippines.
"Wala akong dini-discount, wala akong sinasabing hindi puwede [tumakbong vice president]. Depende sa sitwasyon."
Marcos, son of the late President Ferdinand Marcos, earlier said he may pursue a presidential bid in 2022 if he has enough support.
"In my heart of hearts, I have a preference, but we will see," Marcos told the forum.
Marcos, however, did not directly address if he is willing to wage an election battle against President Rodrigo Duterte, who is being pushed by PDP-Laban to run for vice president in the 2022 elections.
"Until it is clear what it is they intend to do, it is very hard to respond, it is very hard to speculate," he said.
Marcos lost his 2016 vice presidential bid against then-Camarines Sur representative Leni Robredo by 263,473 votes. He protested his loss before the Supreme Court sitting as the Presidential Electoral Tribunal, which ruled in favor of Robredo.
Marcos' spokesperson, Vic Rodriguez, also said it is not in Marcos' place to comment on decisions of PDP-Laban since Marcos is not a member of the party.
"Former Senator Marcos does not belong to the PDP-LABAN, thus, it is improper for him and for anyone outside of that association to comment on what is essentially an internal dynamics of the party," Rodriguez told GMA News Online.
In for a good fight
Senate President Vicente Sotto III also refused to comment on the possible Go-Duterte tandem in 2022, saying he is focusing on his own election plans.
“We'd rather not dip our fingers into other political groups' nominations. We are also focused on what we can to offer to the people,” Sotto told GMA News Online.
Sotto earlier announced that he will run for vice president with Senator Panfilo Lacson as his running mate.
Lacson had said the Senate President is “in for a good fight” against Duterte should the president decide to run for vice president in Eleksyon 2022.
In his sixth and last State of the Nation Address, Duterte said Sotto could become a good vice president.
However, Malacañang clarified that the president did not endorse the Senate chief.
Welcome in PDP-Laban
Meanwhile, at a press briefing, PDP-Laban Secrerary General Melvin Matibag said Marcos is welcome to join the party.
"If he is willing to join the PDP and embrace the principles of the party, I think he will go through the process. Then if they will accept that and he is willing to go through the process and we feel that he is worthy to be a PDP-Laban member, then why not?” Matibag said.
Matibag noted that politics "is based on alliances."
"You increase your base, your alliances, and that is how you win an election," he said. —KBK/RSJ, GMA News