Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-NY) did not mince his words in a statement on the floor of the House of Representatives on December 17th, before adjourning for the year. In his statement, Rep. Gutierrez said:
I can’t vote for the omnibus bill because it doesn’t give the people of Puerto Rico some hope for a better future.
The omnibus bill does not provide a path forward amid budget cuts, cuts in services, growing unemployment, and the greedy banks and bondholders who demand more and more, even as the people of Puerto Rico have less and less.
Puerto Rico is a colony of the United States. Its sovereignty rests here in the Congress of the United States, and we will not do anything to help them.
So tomorrow I tell the people of Puerto Rico, I will be with you. I will vote against this omnibus budget because if there are no schools in Puerto Rico, if there is no law enforcement to protect the people on the streets, if there are no doctors or nurses healing the sick, there won’t be a vote on this budget until there is justice for the people. And I tell every Representative that votes in favor of this budget, you are denying a future for Puerto Rico and you are betraying the people of Puerto Rico.