Rubio Addresses Puerto Rico Status, Calls for a Two-Option Ballot Plebiscite

Following a ceremony honoring Puerto Rico’s Borinqueneers earlier this week, Sen. Marco Rubio stated his support for a two-option ballot to guide Puerto Rico’s next plebiscite.  Answering a question from a reporter about his position on Puerto Rico statehood, Sen. Rubio first  emphasized the importance of deferring to the people of Puerto Rico regarding the islands’ status and then turned to talk about his position on the best format for the next plebiscite ballot.

“Ultimately, the people of Puerto Rico will have to decide” the territory’s status, explained Rubio, but, he added, any upcoming referendum should include “a ballot question that allows them two choices – not three – but two very clear choices” given the disputes that followed the 2012 vote.

(Click here to see the interview.)

In raising the two-option ballot idea, Rubio highlighted an idea that has gained increasing support in the U.S. Congress.  Puerto Rican Resident Commissioner Pedro Pierluisi has introduced legislation calling for a vote in Puerto Rico in which the electorate would be asked to vote “Yes” or “No”on statehood.  In the Senate, Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-NM) has introduced an identical bill.  The legislation has the support of the nation’s largest Latino organization, the League of  United Latin American Citizens (LULAC).

Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla has announced plans to hold a status plebiscite before the end of his current political term in 2016.  The structure of that ballot remains uncertain.

Rubio’s remarks do not represent the first time that the Senator has expressed an interest in Puerto Rico.  In a 2011 hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere, Peace Corps, and Global Narcotics Affairs, Senator Rubio questioned a witness about the U.S. response to the growing epidemic of drug trafficking and narcotics in the Caribbean.  Focusing on Puerto Rico, Rubio stated: “This is a domestic obligation of ours.  This is not another country.  This is under our jurisdiction, and these are American citizens. And so what is our plan there?  How are we working that?  How is that developing?  Are we looking at some new things that we can do?”  (See video here at the one hour 30 seconds mark)

 

 


3 Comments

Luis Arroyo

The current territorial status was rejected by 54% percent in 2012.
Senate committee of Finance and Federal taxation Chairman Ron Wyden has stated clearly; “Present commonwealth cannot be included because it IS THE PROBLEM.”
Wyden went further;….”Inclusion of the commonwealth, especially the impractical unconstitutional Enhanced Commonwealth option only serves to delay and confuse the debate.”

My Opinion;….. Any vote between statehood and “Present Commonwealth” WILL BE SEEN AS A VICTORY BY THE COMMONWEALTH PARTY.

The “commonwealth” party will make the following false points in the plebiscite campaign commercials and rallies……

1. US will never grant statehood to a Hispanic population.
2. US wont grant statehood,thats why Congress rejected a Statehood vs Seperate National Sovereignty plebiscite.
3.Since Congress rejected a Statehood vs Undependence vote ,Congress is obviously seeking to avoid a statehood victory.
4. Commonwealth can be “Enhanced” . Otherwise, why include it alongside statehood?
5. Congress wont grant statehood. They’re giving us a chance to reverse ourselves and VOTE FOR COMMONWEALTH. WE CAN LATER IMPROVE COMMONWEALTH.

HOW CAN I OR ANY OTHER PRO STATEHOOD ADVOCATE EXPLAIN CONGRESS DELIBERATELY REINSTATING THE COLONIAL COMMONWEALTH AS AN OPTION? I WILL ADMIT IT…IT…MEANS…CONGRESS WANTS COMMONWEALTH TO WIN!! Congress would avoid the guaranteed statehood victory if it forced a final US statehood vs Independence vote.

But there’s more. On top of Congress validating territorial commonwealth in the eyes of the Commonwealth party,
The PPD commonwealth party will air the usual threats against statehood.
1. Loss of language.
2. Persecution of spanish in the home.
3. Cultural genocide by “gringos”
4. “Gringos taking their land away”.
5. Loss of their homes by property taxes (PR already has property taxes under PR- CRIM)
6. Loss of the Puerto Rico flag (BS)
7. Name change to “Rich Port” from Puerto Rico.

A statehood vs Commonwealth is a VICTORY FOR COMMONWEALTH.,

1. Pessimistic Puerto Ricans will vote Commonwealth for fear of losing the US if Congress “rejects” a statehood win. (This is why any statehood yes/no vote should come with an admissions act like HR 2000/S 2020.)

2. ALL INDEPENDENCE SUPPORTERS WILL VOTE FOR COMMONWEALTH BY DEFAULT TO PREVENT A STATEHOOD WIN. (Under a statehood vs Independence vote, the seperatists will have no choice BUT to defend their independence option.)

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