Trump Calls Puerto Rico Response an “Incredible Unsung Success” and Velázquez Pushes Back

As Hurricane Florence nears the southeastern United States, ABC News is reporting that President Trump has called his administration’s response to Hurricane Maria an “incredible unsung success.” “I think Puerto Rico was incredibly successful.  Puerto Rico was actually our toughest one of all because it is an island,” Trump said. “I actually think it is… Read more »

Florida Must Provide Spanish-Language Ballots, Judge Says

U.S. District Judge Mark Walker declared last week that 32 Florida counties must provide Spanish-language ballots in the upcoming midterm elections.Walker singled out Florida’s Secretary of State, Kenneth Detzner, who claimed that he had no control over election materials in the individual counties in the state. Walker disagrees. In his decision he wrote, “As this… Read more »

New Study on 2017 Hurricanes and Wildfires Specifies Key Recovery Challenges

The federal General Accounting Office (GAO) has released a new report on the 2017 hurricanes and wildfires that contains initial observations on the Federal response and key recovery challenges. The report notes that in 2017, four sequential disasters – hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria and the California wildfires – created an unprecedented demand for federal disaster… Read more »

Senator John McCain on Puerto Rico

The nation is remembering Senator John McCain (R-AZ) as a statesman who served his country with valor and integrity. in 2011, Senator McCain’s website carried this statement demonstrating his sentiments about Puerto Rico and island’s proud tradition of military service: “Senator McCain has great appreciation and respect for the people of Puerto Rico, including the… Read more »

Reactions to the New Hurricane Death Toll

There is a new official death toll for Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico: 2,975. With previous estimates ranging from 51 to 4,645, the new official toll is closer to the midpoint, but more than 50 times as high as the most widely distributed number from Puerto Rico’s government, 64. A study commissioned by Governor Rossello… Read more »

Statehood Supporters Win Florida Primaries

Primary elections in Florida had been in the news as speculation about the influence of Puerto Rican voters increased in the run-up to the votes. It turns out several of the winners had one thing in common: support for statehood for Puerto Rico. Florida Governor Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum (D) will face Rep. Ron DeSantis… Read more »

Peter Gaynor, FEMA Nominee, Quizzed about Puerto Rico in Senate Hearing

“So Mr. Gaynor, how will you seek to prepare FEMA to be able to handle the next Puerto Rico-style emergency?” The question came as members of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs held hearings with Peter Gaynor, nominee for the position of Deputy Administrator of FEMA. Gaynor was the director of the… Read more »

Would Puerto Rico and DC Statehood Advance in a Democratic Congress?

Discussions of statehood efforts for Puerto Rico sometimes suggest that it won’t be possible with Republicans in the majority in Congress. Arguments taking this position sometimes suggest that it would make more sense to wait for the next time Democrats are in power before working toward statehood. As Matt Flowers @SunshineEmpire put it at Twitter,… Read more »

Puerto Rico Threatened by New Medicaid Cliff

When we talk about a government facing a cliff, we mean that the money funding the government’s costs will run out. In the case of Puerto Rico, Medicaid is expected to run through all available funding by September of 2019. According to the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Assistant Secretary for… Read more »

Guam Veteran Vote Proposal Confuses

By Howard Hills Honoring Veterans with Truth The Governor of Guam, Eddie Calvo, recently sent a letter to President Trump requesting that U.S. military veterans in Guam be given the same federal voting rights as Americans in the States of the Union. In doing so the Governor did not make it clear if this was… Read more »