Pope calls Biden to congratulate him on winning US election
In this file photo taken on Sept. 24, 2015, Pope Francis waves next to US Vice President Joe Biden from a balcony at the US Capitol after speaking to a joint session of the US Congress in Washington, DC. (Photo: AFP)
Biden will be the nation's second Catholic president after John F. Kennedy
Pope Francis called President-elect Joe Biden early Nov. 12 to congratulate him on winning the US presidential election.
"The president-elect thanked His Holiness for extending blessings and congratulations and noted his appreciation for His Holiness's leadership in promoting peace, reconciliation and the common bonds of humanity around the world," said a readout on the call released by Biden's transition team in Wlmington. It also was all over Twitter.
Biden, it said, "expressed his desire to work together on the basis of a shared belief in the dignity and equality of all humankind on issues such as caring for the marginalized and the poor, addressing the crisis of climate change, and welcoming and integrating immigrants and refugees into our communities."
Biden will be the nation's second Catholic president, after John F. Kennedy, who was elected to the nation's highest office 60 years ago, on Nov. 8, 1960.
On Nov. 7, the media declared Biden the winner of the Nov. 3 election, but President Donald Trump has not conceded, and he and his campaign have filed several lawsuits in key battleground states, like Pennsylvania, disputing the election outcome, claiming voter fraud and irregularities in ballot counting.
While votes are still being counted, Biden has garnered 290 electoral votes while Trump has 217 electoral votes. It takes 270 votes to win the presidency.
In the meantime, Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris are working with their transition team.
Biden first met Pope Francis in 2013 as vice president, serving with President Barack Obama. In 2015, Biden and Obama welcomed Pope Francis to Washington, where he addressed a joint meeting of Congress Sept. 24 of that year.
Then-Vice President Biden also met Pope Francis' predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, including a meeting in the pope's Vatican office June 3, 2011.
While he was on the campaign trail for the 2020 presidential race, Biden invoked Pope Francis and quoted his encyclical, "Fratelli Tutti, on Fraternity and Social Friendship," released Oct. 4 by the Vatican.