Posts Categorized: Opinion

The Statehood Petition in a ‘Do-Nothing’ Congress

Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory by action of the Government of the United States — not by the free will of its people.  Its status is undemocratic — Puerto Ricans do not have votes in the government that makes their national laws.  It — and its residents — are treated unequally in some important… Read more »

Is Puerto Rico Too Foreign for Statehood?

One of the arguments against statehood for Puerto Rico is that Puerto Rico is too foreign to be a state. Part of the discussion focuses on the possibility that Puerto Rico is really its own nation. The Associated Press considers its Puerto Rican writers foreign correspondents. Puerto Rico has a team at the Olympics and… Read more »

Boston Globe Commentator Calls for Statehood vs. Independence Choice

In a Boston Globe opinion piece published today and reprinted below, a political commentator who was born in Puerto Rico but lives in Massachusetts notes the lack of national government democracy in the U.S. territory and its poorer Federal treatment than the States. His solution is a statehood vs. independence plebiscite. In the thoughtful op-ed,… Read more »

The Simple Truth: Puerto Rico Is a Territory

What’s in a name? In William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, Juliet asks “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” The titular character uses the rose comparison to explain that putting another label on a “rose” would not change its taste or smell. The exact… Read more »

Pierluisi Sets the Record Straight on Puerto Rico Plebiscite

On May 20, 2013, Puerto Rico’s Governor, Alejandro Garcia-Padilla, wrote an article for The Hill entitled “Moving forward together.” In the article, the governor expressed his opinions surrounding the results of the November 2012 plebiscite; specifically, Governor Garcia-Padilla wrote “[t]he results of the Nov. 6, 2012 [plebiscite] are inconclusive — none of the options for… Read more »

Full Citizenship for Hispanic Americans

Puerto Ricans in the United States sometimes get tired of being included and even featured in discussions of immigration reform. “We may be Hispanic,” the weary response goes, “but we’ve been citizens of the United States for nearly a century. Immigration doesn’t affect us any more closely than it does any other Americans.” A Washington… Read more »

New Budget Throws Out Previous Vote?

In its report on a $2.5 million White House appropriation for a new plebiscite vote in Puerto Rico, the Huffington Post concluded that the funding “indicates the Obama administration has rejected the argument that Puerto Ricans voted to become the 51st state in a two-part referendum held in November.”   We disagree. The Huffington Post supports its characterization of… Read more »

New Study of U.S. Ocean Freight Law and Puerto Rico Inconclusive

A major Federal study released today that examines the application of the primary Federal ocean freight law to Puerto Rico — and exempting the territory from it, as some in the islands have advocated — raises as many questions as it answers. The law, known as the Jones Act, requires that shipping between U.S. ports be on vessels… Read more »

Puerto Rico Law Enforcement Funding Included in Legislation

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed legislation to fund the Federal government from March 28th through September 30, the rest of Federal Fiscal Year 2013. A separate bill has been introduced in the Senate and a compromise is expected to be reached, although there are differences between the House bill written by the House’s… Read more »

Puerto Rico, Not States, Losing Healthcare Funds

The Fiscal Year 2014 budget proposed by U.S. House of Representatives Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) would cut Federal healthcare funding for low and middle income individuals living in Puerto Rico and other U.S. territories while just eliminating increases for healthcare assistance in the States and the District of Columbia.