Teaching Current Events with Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico is a territory belonging to the United States. It could become a state, or it could declare its independence from the United States and become a new nation. While most schools in the continental United States do not include Puerto Rico in history lessons, the current unusual position of this island territory could… Read more »

Citizenship Transition for an Associated Republic of Puerto Rico

On July 20, The House Natural Resources Committee passed HR 8393, The Puerto Rico Status Act, and sent it to the full House of Representatives for further consideration. A number of amendments were proposed, but none were passed. One of the amendments, introduced by Rep. Tom Tiffany (R-WI), asked to strike the U.S. citizenship transition… Read more »

Steny Hoyer’s Remarks on The Puerto Rico Status Act

House of Representatives Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-NY) took the unusual step of presenting remarks before the markup of HR 8393, The Puerto Rico Status Act. “As a principle, America supports strongly across the world, self-determination. We support in almost every region of the world the opportunity of peoples who are in a region or… Read more »

The Votes Against the Puerto Rico Status Act in Committee

Although The Puerto Rico Status Act (HR 8393), was approved by the House Natural Resources Committee two weeks ago, the vote was not unanimous. Support for the bill was bipartisan, but so was the opposition. The criticism against the bill mainly focused on the process – notably the relatively short amount of time the committee… Read more »

Concerns about U.S. Citizenship Noted in Status Proposal

On Wednesday, July 20, the House Natural Resources Committee approved The Puerto Rico Status Act and forwarded the bill for consideration by the full U.S. House of Representatives. The proposal, reflecting months of collaboration among the congressional leaders of Puerto Rico related issues in the House of Representatives, provides a process for the people of… Read more »

Citizenship and Sovereignty: An Old Debate That Echoes Today

In 1998, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee held a widely anticipated hearing on two bills (H.R. 856, S. 472) to determine the political status of Puerto Rico. It was as it has remained to this day a U.S. territory, a status quo that has failed to reach political resolution for the people of… Read more »

State Department Rejects U.S. Citizenship in a Sovereign Puerto Rico

One of the most critical questions inherent in the debate over Puerto Rico’s future political status is the the fate of U.S. citizenship for people born in Puerto Rico. While some supporters of independence may accept the loss of U.S. citizenship, most Puerto Ricans cherish their U.S. citizenship. Although statehood would provide permanent U.S. citizenship… 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 »

Telecommunications Progress in Puerto Rico

Telecommunications — the ability to use phone or internet for communication — was a major challenge in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. A 2021 article in the Journal of Critical Infrastructure Policy bluntly stated that “The hurricanes revealed the fragility of Puerto Rico’s telecommunications infrastructure, which failed, leaving the majority of Puerto Rican citizens without a… Read more »