Posts Categorized: Top Stories

Lessons from the Philippines for Puerto Rico

The United States acquired both Puerto Rico and the Philippines from Spain following the Spanish–American War in 1898. In 1946, the Philippines ended its status as a territory of the United States and became an independent nation. During the roughly 50 years in which the Philippines was a territory, U.S. law recognized Filipinos as U.S. nationals, granting them special… Read more »

How Predictions on Philippines Independence Played Out

In 1927, when the Philippines was a U.S. territory, Philippines Governor Leonard Wood sent a proposal to President Calvin Coolidge seeking his approval to hold a referendum on Philippine independence. The Philippines Assembly had already approved a resolution on November 19, 1924 demanding “full and complete independence” from the U.S., and the distant U.S. territory… Read more »

Puerto Rico Status Act Introduced in Congress

Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ.), the chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee, introduced the Puerto Rico Status Act in Congress today. The Puerto Rico Status Act is a compromise bill negotiated by the sponsors of two different status bills for the U.S. territory, with input from field hearings and meetings held in Puerto Rico. “Finding… Read more »

House Democrats Propose Up to $1.4 Billion for Puerto Rico

Click here to see the House Democrats' legislative proposal

The COVID-19 response bill that U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) released this afternoon as an alternative to the bill put forward by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) as the third major piece of response legislation proposes up to approximately $1.4 billion a year in additional assistance for Puerto Ricans. The territory… Read more »

Letter from House Leaders to DOJ Calls for Puerto Rico Statehood Vote

Congressional leaders have written a letter to U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker asking for a federally-sponsored plebiscite in Puerto Rico. The letter  – signed by House of Representatives Committee on Natural Resources Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT), Chairman Emeritus Don Young, Subcommittee on Indian, Insular and Alaska Native Affairs Doug LaMalfa (R-CA), and Puerto… Read more »

Rep. Jenniffer Gonzalez Introduces Puerto Rico Admission Act of 2018

Puerto Rico Resident Commissioner Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon introduced legislation today that would set Puerto Rico on the path to statehood. The bill, HR 6246 or the Puerto Rico Admission Act of 2018, begins with a summary of the history of the relationship between the United States and Puerto Rico, from U.S. acquisition of Puerto Rico from Spain through… Read more »

Former AG Explains Why Puerto Rico Should Be a State

Jose Fuentes, former Attorney General of Puerto Rico and Chairman of the Puerto Rico Statehood Council, shared his views on Puerto Rico’s status in an NBC news “Think” segment. “The United States cannot continue to be the force for democracy around the world and still maintain this colony in the Caribbean,” he began. “It’s time… Read more »

U.S. Senators React to Puerto Rico Visit

U.S. senators who visited Puerto Rico Saturday had differing reactions to the requests and the territory’s needs. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) called for “a plan, a type of ‘Marshall Plan, no matter what it takes.” Fellow Democrat Richard Blumenthal (CT) contended that, “We need a financial plan immediately.” He suggested that it be developed among… Read more »

How Mississippi is Catching Up — and Puerto Rico Is Not

Incomes in Puerto Rico have historically lagged behind those in the states, but the difference is steadily increasing. Puerto Rico’s per capita income – as represented by the blue bar at the left of each cluster in the graph above – has grown since 1970, but it hasn’t kept up with the states. Puerto Rico’s per… Read more »