Conflict between Puerto Rico Governor and the White House

Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello has been criticized for kowtowing to President Trump over disaster relief, but he has now taken a different approach. “It would be a mistake to confuse courtesy with courage,” he said in an interview with CNN in which he was asked whether he felt as though he were dealing with… Read more »

U.S. Presidential Elections and Puerto Rico Statehood

By Howard Hills Would Puerto Rico join the “National Popular Vote Interstate Compact” to impose national popular vote on Electoral College? Should states agree to nullify popular votes in states if different from national popular vote results? To participate in election of national vote winner will states give up right to vote against national winning… Read more »

The Enduring Legacy of “Commonwealth”

When Puerto Rico is referred to as a “commonwealth,” the term is often not intended to describe Puerto Rico’s current status as a U.S. territory.  Instead the word as used by its supporters refers to a combination of contradictory notions of independence and statehood that has been called “a letter to Santa Claus” (Rep. Jose… Read more »

Soto Introduces Puerto Rico Admission Act of 2019

Representative Darren Soto (D-FL) has introduced legislation that would call for the immediate admission of Puerto Rico as a new U.S. state. “You can see the island’s colonial status is not working,” Soto was quoted as saying in the Washington Post. “It’s time to end the 120-year injustice of Puerto Rico being a colony.” “This… Read more »

The Vote in Puerto Rico’s June 11 Political Status Plebiscite: Analysis

Puerto Rico’s most recent plebiscite, held June 11, 2017, had a very clear outcome: 97% of voters chose statehood from the territory’s three status options (nationhood in addition to territory status and statehood). The islands’ political factions supporting nationhood and an unprecedented “Commonwealth status” that Federal officials have said is impossible for constitutional reasons  had… Read more »

A Page from History: The Puerto Rico Statehood Act of 1977

The Puerto Rico Statehood Admission Act of 2019 was filed this week. But that was not by any means the first Puerto Rico Statehood Act. Consider the Puerto Rico Statehood Act of 1977, introduced by President Gerald Ford after he rejected a proposal for “perfected commonwealth.” The Statehood Act was designed to provide economic opportunity… Read more »

Rep. José E. Serrano to Retire

Rep. José E. Serrano (D-NY) has announced that he will not run for reelection in 2020, following his diagnosis with Parkinson’s Disease. His colleagues in the House have spoken about his long service, his tenacity, and his dedication to human rights. Serrano is also known for his work for Puerto Rico, where he was born. House… Read more »

Democratic Presidents Recognize Need to Move Beyond Puerto Rico’s Current Status

Both major national parties have recognized that Puerto Rico’s current relationship as a U.S. territory is untenable.  Republican presidents have unequivocally supported statehood, and Democrats in the White House have spoken about the need to determine Puerto Rico’s permanent “future status.” President Obama President Barack Obama noted in the release of the 2011 Report by… Read more »

Puerto Ricans in the United States: A Statistical Profile

The Pew Hispanic Center has for some time been keeping records on people living in Puerto Rico, and on people from Puerto Rico living in the States.  According to the most recent report, Puerto Ricans are the second-largest Hispanic subgroup in the U.S. after Mexicans, constituting 9.5 percent of the total U.S. Hispanic population.  They… Read more »

Republican Presidents Support Statehood for Puerto Rico

George Bush, Ronald Reagan and Gerald R. Ford all made ads favoring statehood in preparation for the 1993 status referendum in Puerto Rico. Mr. Reagan tells voters that “the United States will welcome you with open arms” because “we believe firmly that our strength is our diversity.”  He emphasizes that he personally favors statehood for… Read more »