House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) talked about Puerto Rico during a conversation on the House Floor.
“Puerto Rico, of course, is an integral part of the United States of America,” he said. “Its citizens are citizens of the United states of America. Like other jurisdictions who have from time to time, whether they be in California or New York or in the Midwest or the South or the North, found themselves in deep fiscal trouble. Puerto Rico now finds itself in that position.” Hoyer went on to say that he appreciated Speaker Paul Ryan’s setting a deadline (March 31st) for a resolution of the problem, but also asked whether it was possible to get more information on the possibility of allowing Puerto Rico to use chapter 9 bankruptcy.
Republican Whip Steve Scalise said he felt that it was important to allow the upcoming hearings to take place before discussing the question further, so that the committees could do their jobs in an orderly fashion.
Hoyer has spoken before on this issue, saying that “Congress has a responsibility to ensure that Puerto Rico’s debt crisis does not turn into an economic catastrophe for the millions of Americans living there.”