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  • Puerto Rico Democracy Act – Legislation Biased in Favor of Statehood

    According to Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), the House will vote on H.R. 2499, the Puerto Rico Democracy Act, later this week.  The legislation provides Puerto Rico a two stage voting process and makes some non-resident Puerto Ricans eligible to vote on Puerto Rican statehood.  This legislation has rigged the process in favor of making Puerto Rico the 51st state and is not a fair way to force statehood on a Commonwealth whose people may not want it. Furthermore, this may be an expensive proposition for the American people who are already on the hook for approximately $12.9 trillion in national debt.

    This bill attempts to rig the voting process and denies the American people a real say on the issue of whether they want to allow Puerto Rico to be granted statehood.  The fact of the matter is that Puerto Ricans have rejected statehood numerous times and this bill seems to have been written in a way to fast track statehood without a majority of Puerto Ricans favoring the idea.  Furthermore, the people of the United States should be allowed a vote on whether they want to admit Puerto Rico as a new state.  If the people of Puerto Rico can vote, the people of the United States should have a vote.

    The legislation contains many questionable provisions.  First, the legislation sets up a voting process rigged for success.  The legislation sets up a preliminary vote and the voters are given two options.  If a majority of Puerto Ricans vote in favor of changing the status of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico to “a different political status,” then a second vote would be scheduled to poll voters on the following three options:

    1. “Independence: Puerto Rico should become fully independent from the United States;”
    2. “Sovereignty in Association with the United States: Puerto Rico and the United States should form a political association between sovereign nations that will not be subject to the Territorial Clause of the United States Constitution;” and,
    3. “Statehood: Puerto Rico should be admitted as a State of the Union.”

    Clearly, a plurality of the people of Puerto Rico could vote for “Statehood” without a majority of the people voting ever supporting the idea.  The people of Puerto Rico have rejected statehood three times and it seems that this vote is set up to allow a simply plurality of the people to carry the day.

    Another odd provision allows non-resident Puerto Ricans to vote on statehood for the Commonwealth.  The bill states that “all United States citizens born in Puerto Rico who comply, to the satisfaction of the Puerto Rico State Elections Commission, with all Commission requirements (other than the residency requirement) applicable to eligibility to vote in a general election in Puerto Rico.”  Residency requirements may be waived, because Puerto Ricans living in the states would naturally favor statehood for the Commonwealth.

    This provision allows non-resident Puerto Ricans to undermine the will of the residents of the Commonwealth.  According to the U.S. Census, there are more Puerto Ricans residing in the 50 states, than in the proposed 51st state.  The estimates as part of the American Community Survey estimates that out of the 301 million people in the United States, 4.13 million are of Puerto Rican descent.  The Census also estimates that the population of Puerto Rico is a mere 3.97 million.  This would allow for the will of the residents of the Commonwealth to be overridden by people who have chosen to move one of the 50 states.

    The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) put out a report dated July 28, 2009 on H.R. 2499.  The CBO report estimated that there would be no score for this bill, because it only authorizes a vote, but if Puerto Rico was granted statehood the cost would be massive.  My boss, Edwin Feulner wrote in 1997 piece titled Do We Need a 51st State? “in an era of government downsizing and balanced budgets, it would increase entitlement spending (welfare, Medicare, Social Security) by an estimated $3 billion per year, according to the Congressional Budget Office.”  Those arguments still hold water today.  The Lexington Institute argues that “Puerto Rico, which received $18 billion in direct federal expenditures in FY 2008, has a population with a median national income of $17,741, nearly a third below that for the United States. While eligibility for many major federal social programs is the same in both jurisdictions, others, like the Food Stamp Program, include different eligibility requirements. This would likely result in increased federal expenditures should statehood be achieved, but a lack of comparable data makes cost projections for such changes difficult.”  It is clear that the cost of statehood to the taxpayers will be high.

    The Puerto Rico Democracy Act has some serious flaws.  The votes seem to be set up in a way that favors statehood.  The two provisions that allow a plurality of Puerto Ricans to vote for statehood to be ratified and the allowing of non-resident Puerto Ricans to vote in the plebiscite is of deep concern to those who favor a fair vote and referendum on statehood.  A vote by members of Congress is not enough to indicate consent of the American people for Puerto Rican statehood.  If the Obamacare vote and secretive procedure is instructive, many Members of Congress are willing to defy the will of their own constituents.

    Posted in Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    170 Responses to Puerto Rico Democracy Act – Legislation Biased in Favor of Statehood

    1. Rob, Richmond, VA says:

      With all due respect, the "rigged" argument is off. Everybody knows that the popularity of admission into statehood goes up and down from majority to plurality. Furthermore, you paint residency status as a black and white legal issue when it clearly is not. For example, students temporarily residing in a different state than home for the fulfillment of their college requirements are not considered void of their original state citizenship just because they reside in a different state. I'd wager that there are similar instances with respect to this vote outlined by the laws of Puerto Rico. To twist that into saying that this bill is completely contrived without respect to law is a bit of a blind statement. At least research the laws of Puerto Rico with respect to citizenship "abroad"! How can you attest to the absolute outcome if you aren't citing standing Puerto Rican citizenship laws? Are you arguing that a "fair vote" is irrespective of Puerto Rican laws?

      Regarding "entitlements" [bad word to use if you have ever benefited from Medicare, Medicaid or Social Security, by the way], I agree that costs (and, thus, spending) will go up. I don't contend that for a second and, in fact, that's my argument against the legislation.

    2. Calvin Llorén says:

      "In my opinion, Congress has no existence and can exercise no authority outside of the Constitution. Still less is it true that Congress can deal with new territories just as other nations have done or may do with their new territories. This nation is under the control of a written constitution, the supreme law of the land and the only source of the powers which our government, or any branch or officer of it, may exert at any time or at any place. Monarchical and despotic governments, unrestrained by written constitutions, may do with newly acquired territories what this government may not do consistently with our fundamental law. To say otherwise is to concede that Congress may, by action taken outside of the Constitution, engraft upon our republican institutions a colonial system such as exists under monarchical governments. Surely such a result was never contemplated by the fathers of the Constitution. If that instrument had contained a word suggesting the possibility of a result of that character it would never have been adopted by the people of the United States. The idea that this country may acquire territories anywhere upon the earth, by conquest or treaty, and hold them as mere colonies or provinces,—the people inhabiting them to enjoy only such rights as Congress chooses to accord to them,—is wholly inconsistent with the spirit and genius, as well as with the words, of the Constitution." – Justice John Harlan, dissenting in the Insular Cases, 1901

    3. Anglo resident Hatil says:

      If $18 billion in direct federal expenditures in FY 2008, went to PR for the population of Puerto Rico is a mere 3.97 million that's ??? million a head you do the math and laugh. Where did the money go ? It has not gone to the people, or infarstructure repair, replacement > i have been watching HWY 10 being built to Ponce for 15 years and it's not complete.

      Maybe if they become a state, US Federal Income taxes would be collected on income. That would go over great with the people. There was a near revolution to impose a sales tax a few years back. PR residents want all the hand-outs from the US mainland but don't want to make a tax contribution. PR has their own constitution and a different legal system that does not require a jury of 12 to be in agreement before finding one guilty. It requires a majority only.

      This is another insane idea just to get the Hispanic vote for the Democrats.The residents of PR have realized in their last election that the socialistic type of government thay had been under for so may years was not working. This is why they changed courses and elected the Republican, business friendy, personal responsibility candidate Fortuno who is now the Executive of PR. While the mainland has returned to the Socialistic Obama type government. The PR people have realized that was a failure that kept them slaves to the government, and living on the crumbs that were given them from their leaders. They made a change.

      I have been in PR for over 20 years and have seen more growth in the past 2 years them in the previous 18. My praise to Fortuno.

      PR residents will never want statehood if it requires paying US taxes>>

      • Luis Arroyo says:

        Whenever the pro commonwealth party wins, they pass laws contrary to US constitution with the only intent of making a hostile political enviroment between the US Congress and Puerto Rico. All to make PR ineligible to statehood. The 46-55% for Statehood understand and are willing to contribute federal taxes. Even the 1-2% for independence know taxes must be paid. Its the pro commonwealth supporters im the" PPD Popular" Democrat party ( typical currupt 3rd world political party name, adding " popular" to their name to imply to newcomers that they are the"it " party.) PPD voter supporters 45% are deceived into thinking they can have permanent union with US,yet somehow seperate associated nationhood(!?? ) perpetual US citizenship, no fed taxes at all to US, all benefits near statehood parity. This dream commonwealth will go into a" mutual pact" with US over what US laws to follow, which to ignore!! Commonwealth IS the welfare state. Congress allows this charade to continue only because if it puts its foot down and imposes federal taxes, PR automatically becomes incorporated territory. Taxation without representation is a statehood promise.



    5. Tom, Pennsylvania says:

      The lib-dems are currently engaged in "vote-herding" for the November elections. Most of all legislation "pushed" to the forefront right now, as with immigration, is for political purposes. Redistribution of wealth to a "country/state" in need goes a long way.

    6. Dwyer Arce, Pittsbur says:

      1. There has never been a nationwide vote on the admittance of a state. The Constitution gives the power to admit new states solely to the Congress as representatives of the nation.

      2. The bill would allow those born in Puerto Rico living stateside to vote, not those of Puerto Rican descent. There may be more people of Puerto Rican descent living stateside than on the island today, but those actually born on the island is going to be much smaller.

      3. Mississippi has a much lower median income than the US average, and likely takes up billions of federal dollars in social welfare programs, I have yet to hear anyone object to Mississippi's statehood.

      4. Pro-statehood candidates have consistently won territory-wide elections (such as the current governor, elected in 2008).

      5. The fact is that the people of Puerto Rico have been US citizens since 1917. They pay all federal taxes with the exception of federal income tax. The people of Puerto Rico have enlisted in the US military in numbers disproportionate to their population, and have fought and died in every US war since 1898. Yet the US citizens living in Puerto Rico don't have the right to representation in Congress, nor the ability to vote for President, nor the right to trial by jury (and all other constitutional rights that Congress hasn't seen fit to allow US citizens in Puerto Rico). It is an unjust arrangement that must be remedied, this country has consistently rejected notions of second-class citizenship.

      • Antonio Rivera says:

        you have to be blind not to see it p.r citizenship is second class unfair unjust we should hold a referendum on citizenship not on status. Citizens residing in p.r want our citizenship with equal rights privileges and benefits,as well as the same duties and obligations of all other U.S. citizens, including the right to vote for president etc.(excerpt from ex governor Romero Barcelo, Caribbean Business paper of October 6, 2011).

    7. Omar, Washington, DC says:

      It was a splendid little war.

    8. Pingback: Anonymous

    9. Mike, Chicago says:

      Pure political maneuvering by the Democrats to add more Senators and Congressmen to their Party. America cannot handle this financially as well. Message to Congress and the President…Leave Puerto Rico alone!

    10. Pingback: BlueRidgeForum » What Are They Thinking? GOP Puerto Rico Statehood Fans

    11. Gilbert says:

      In your article you say: "the people of the United States should be allowed a vote on whether they want to admit Puerto Rico as a new state"…when has that happened before?, why should it happen now?, you have representatives who will make that decision for you already…after all you are not the ones living under 112 years of colonial undemocratic rule, why would it matter to you?. You say: rigged the process in favor of making Puerto Rico the 51st state…not a fair way to force statehood on a Commonwealth whose people may not want it, examine each and everyone of the processes for statehood of the current states, which of them had commonwealth status as one of their options?, clearly Puerto Rico's 112 years self determination process is not rigged but tainted by people like you who designed and offered such option as a way to keep PR from achieving full democratic rights, then again: why would it matter to you?. The thing about PR economy, you should learn that the REASON why PR is high on poverty levels is the Commonwealth status, that the Commonwealth is highly indebted because Local + Federal funds do not suffice on the coverage of it's citizens needs and its been on recession 3 years before the US got in recession, all we need is a big injection of better paying jobs thay may come with a full Federal government presence in PR, full economic integration that has NOT happened because Commonwealth is NOT a permanent status, rather unstable vs statehood, for higher wages to be paid all over the economy and less people to depend on government help of any kind,but then again, why would it matter to you?, yes it would mean more money to expend but why such a speech? when you clearly waste billions, sorry trillions of dollars on wars on foreign countries, and fight along your fellow PR citizens while denying them their right to become part of he Union for the country for which they have fought for and ARE citizens for about 100 years?

      • Luis Arroyo says:

        Agreed. The major reason for Puerto Rico's economic underdevelopment, poverty, lack of major small busineses, limited english proficiency….is Congress's failure to incorporate the territory.Had Puerto Rico been incorporated, non hispanic Americans would have moved in large numbers to the island. Today PR would be 75% hispanic, not 98%,as is the case now. That 25% would attract American companies to seriously consider Puerto Rico,since incorporation leads to statehood. Instead, Congress did nothing to encourage Americans to consider giving PR a look. PR's Irish,German,French,Italians and Corsicans today were there BEFORE the US invasion. When visiting the island, keep in mind these are NOT non hispanic tourists, they are nordic Puerto Ricans. Some stupid Americans think we were taken from mexico!

    12. Nick, Rochester, NY says:

      I agree with Rob. And if costs do indeed go up, then the people of Puerto Rico would be paying their fair share in taxes.

      This is a matter of civil rights. We had the right to declare our independence from the UK. Puerto Rico has the right to either declare independence from us or join us as a full and equal member. And independence/statehood may have been rejected 3 times, but opinions change with generations.

      They have a right to decide what they want to do. This sort of half-way commonwealth situation shouldn't be permanent.

    13. Pingback: Is statehood for Puerto Rico coming soon? - Politics and Other Controversies -Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, Conservatives, Liberals, Third Parties, Left-Wing, Right-Wing, Congress, President - Page 2 - City-Data Forum

    14. Kurier Radek, NC says:

      Puerto Ricans themselved have voted down on multiple occassions any legislation regarding statehood in the U.S. This bill is written and supported by the New Progressive Party (Marxists) and radical leftist control freaks. Just another power grabbing, gerrymandering, voter stockpiling for the Dems. Any Republican supporting this bill are being misled, lied to, and completely duped. This is ALL about POWER & CONTROL…nothing more, nothing less. Giant government elitist…in the guise of "democratically elected" officials. Hmmm…America is a representative republic…NOT a democracy in the true sense of the word. All the tyrannical despots of the world in Iran, Venezuela, etc. were "democratically" elected. America is not based on MOB RULE…America is all about ther RULE OF LAW…you know, that pesky thing called the Constitution which seems to always get steamrolled by Progressive, anti-freedom, leftist, radical Marxists hell-bent in "fundamentally transforming" America into a Euro-style socialist wellfare state. Statism is KILLING America…where are all the people who believe in the common sense conservative values that made this country the greatest the world has ever known? STAND UP against tyranny. STAND UP against the Obama Agenda!

      • Luis Arroyo says:

        Wrong! The new progressive party is NOT MARXISTS! They are the conservative historic Republican Party. Current New Progressive/Republican ultra conservative Governor Luis Fortuno is giving the liberal "popular " democrats hell with austerity cuts similar to Wisconsin.The "popular "democrat party controlled local media ( who love commonwealth)demonized the Republican Statehood party so badly,in the 1960's, they had to change their name to "the new progressive party" or NPP/PNP. PROGRESSIVE in ths case means progress towards statehood and equality with the responsibilities. The name was used years before democrat liberals hijacked the word" progressive".

    15. Justin, WV says:

      A vote(gained) by any other means, would smell as foul…

    16. jerry, Orlando says:

      I hope Peurto Rico becomes a state. The current status just keeps Puerto Ricans in limbo and the islands undeveloped. Companies want the security statehood provides, better education, less corruption, English language would be advanced, etc.

      Independence will create another 3rd world country in the Carribean area. No one will want to invest in an unstable, corrupt situation.

      It is unfair for American taxpayers to subsidize Puerto Rico. As a state, Puerto Rico would become like Hawaii, a beautiful paradise.


      Smoke and mirrors, lies, greed, corruption, need for power for the elitists abound in the Obama regime. Americans are standing up and speaking up.

      Read the book Reagan's War by Peter Sweitzer, when Reagan visitied the

      wall and saw the treatment of citizens by soldiers he was in dispair. He totally understood communism and the effects of elitist power over the people.

      We the people must keep standing up. They are afraid of us and are now

      in process of throwing anything against the wall in the hope that it sticks.

      Be brave my fellow citizens, Truth will Prevail and America will be won

      back. We have all learned a lot I'm sure from all of this at least I can surely

      speak for myself. God Bless America. Have No Fear. Patriot Louise

    18. Steve Ohio says:

      Forget the technicalities the legalities, plurality, democratizing and EVERYTHING ELSE!!!! Why in the name of all that is Holy would we want to admit a prinicipality whose primary export is poverty stricken hobos into our once great UNION?!?!?! In fact I don't understand why the sacred tie to P.R. in the first place! What is wrong with you people? How can this even be up for a casual discussion let alone a debate in Congress?!?! Do we not have enough common sense and a single spine among all of us to stand up to Congress and say No more damn self-serving insanity?!?!?!?! While we're at it maybe we should ask Haiti, Somalia, and Zimbabwe to be new states!!! I'm relatively sure that would raise their standards of living. Also, the president's brother would be granted citizenship next week… This is about cobbling together another voting block for progressives (democrats)!!

    19. Sharon in NJ says:

      YES…leave Puerto Rico alone. They dont need the USSA sticking their fingers in their business too!

      God Bless you Louise for your Constructive Encouragement~! Yes- They are AFRAID and we must press on! They are clutching at Straws! They thought

      the American People were Stupid! We will Win America Back!


    20. Ken, Texas says:

      They might as well call this for what it is: The Democrat Voter Replenishment Act.

    21. Caleb Hays, Kansas says:

      I support the right of the ~4 million U.S. citizens who live in PR to decide for themselves if they want to achieve statehood, just like those who founded our own states.

      Those millions of U.S. citizens have no voting representation in Congress and cannot vote for President. They are, for all intents and purposes, the largest disenfranchised group in modern U.S. history.


      I don't understand why we should vote for them to become a state…? Did the other 48 states vote when Alaska wanted to join, or the other 49 when Hawaii did? I'm confused. Congress controls U.S. Territories, so why shouldn't they and the people of the territory have the final say?

      Perhaps this Act *is* biased toward statehood, and we should be for a fair process, but the fact is that this is one of Congress's duties. Let's be for a fair act that helps the citizens of the territory of PR determine for themselves what they want to do. Apparently, the margin has moved ever closer to statehood in every referendum on the matter.

    22. Caleb Hays, Kansas says:

      However, there should be an option: "retain status quo"

      • Luis Arroyo says:

        Yes,Caleb,there is. The first question…." should Puerto Rico's status be changed?" A "no" answer win is a vote for status quo. No second vote.

    23. John B. Oklahoma says:

      More of the Democrats and Progressives buying power and votes with taxpayor dollars. They may be good salesmen but stink at pragmatic solutions to promote the well being of the average US Citizen and the Country!

    24. Mike E. Coon, Pt.Pla says:

      Demonrats, are so power hungry and filled with hatred for the Rule of Law. They blatantly break laws and coddle criminals.

      If this isn't evident to even the most stupid Demonrat, this ought to convince even them of it !

      After all, criminals vote with the Demonrat Party, 92 % of the time…

    25. Lyle, Indiana says:

      My thought is that Obama wants another vote in the Senate to help him push along his socialistic "transformation" of the U.S. The lust for power by the current bunch of Democrats is unbelievable. Every day they turn up the temperature under the pot just another degree or too…until pretty soon we'll all be a bunch of boiled frogs in the pan. Wake Up America!

    26. JoeInVegas, Vegas ba says:

      "Anglo resident Hatillo PR on April 27th, 2010 at 1:15pm said:

      If $18 billion in direct federal expenditures in FY 2008, went to PR for the population of Puerto Rico is a mere 3.97 million that’s ??? million a head you do the math and laugh."

      18 billion divided by 3.97 million = $4,534 per resident.

    27. Dee, Utah says:

      Seriously, how much more corruption do we have to show America before the rest get their heads on straight?

      And thanks Louise, for your words of encouragement. Stones of truth can bring down any giant.

    28. Ramsey Caraballo says:

      Being a Puerto Rican does not make me a liberal! I am a conservative who wants PR to become the 51st state of the US. Like most of you, I hate Obama's liberal agenda! We the people of Puerto Rico, are tired of hand outs and political manipulation. We want to be fiscally responsible too. It is very easy to make judgements without knowing the facts!!

    29. phillip rivera bethp says:

      it's about time

    30. Pat says:

      I am Puerto Rican. My father served 30 years in the navy – my family members have served in various military branches, loving and protecting our nation because we care deeply. Still, my island is not fully recognized as part of the United States, though we pay taxes and social security and are ruled by federal law like any other citizen of the United States. It is by far time that Puerto Rico become a state – and fully part of the United States.

    31. James says:

      The American people should not vote on statehood for the Commonwealth. No other state has been put to popular vote nor is it mandated in the Constitution.Article IV section 3 clearly states that not only may Congress admit new states to the Union, but all rules regarding territories are theirs to make. The Commonwealth has been taking tax money for years. They should be given statehood or independence. My only complaint is that remaining a Commonwealth shouldn't be on option.

    32. Wayne says:

      Few folks seem to get what this is going to accomplish INSIDE the other 50 states. By law Congress is limited to 435 seats. If this goes thru some of the other states will be forced to give up seats for Puerto Rico.

      Do you think with Nancy Pelosi that any of these seats will be in Demonrat-controlled states?

      Couple this with the 2 seats they are about to get for DC (again from where?).

      Add in votes for felons and prisoners. How do you think those votes will change the election balance?

      Finally, throw in voting rights for all the illegals.

      When you put all of this together, you are talking like a 20 seat shift from "red" states to "blue" states. This is nothing less than a (possibly multi) generation takeover of complete political power in this country by the Demonrats.

    33. Larry Sheldon, Plane says:

      Of course Puerto Rico must be made a state. Washington, DC as well. And what ever it takes to get to the 60 he said were in existence when we elected him.

      If we don't there won't be enough people to get him re-elected!

    34. Cory S. in Manitoba, says:

      I understand that there may be some tricks being played by politicians in this particular instance, and I may be getting off on a tangent here, but I have to wonder why countries like Canada and the U.S. still have "territories" like Yukon and Guam. Why not make these jurisdictions provinces and states so they can look after their own local issues without interference from Ottawa or Washington, D.C., while at the same time allowing them to partcipate in the decision-making process for military and other federal matters?

    35. Steve from Wisconsin says:

      Tom from Pennsylvania nailed it on the head earlier – the Democrats are now in the process of "vote-herding", and they would give the right to vote to dogs and cats if they believed they were likely to support liberal candidates!

    36. JG, USA says:

      Angelo brings out some good points. The people of PR have learned that it is bad to be dependent on the government. The government and the bankers create dependency to make it easier to control the people. A frog will jump out of hot water but will stay in cold water and boil as the heat goes up. The American people need to wake up and realize the politicians work for the global bank. The global bank wants a single currency through out the world and a single government in control of all the people of the world. The global bankers don't like the US Constitution because it was written to protect the people from what was then the central bank of Europe, now called the global bank. The Constitution was written to safeguard take over of the country by outsiders with loyalty to outside interests. That is why it says only "Natural Born Citizens" of the US can be President. All politicians, judges, lawyers, elitists, the big bankers and most of the media knows what that means. No one said anything, who could have done something about it, before or since the election. It should be painfully obvious to everyone in the US who was against the so-called health care bill that the congress does not care what we have to say. If they did the bill would not have been passed. People wake up! The USA and PR are about to get first hand experience to the same thing that happened in Russia, Germany, China and Cuba. The problem is not the Democrats or the Republicans. It is both and their loyalty to the global bank. The global bank take over started in the USA in 1903 and was established in 1913. The Federal Reserve is the American Branch of the global bank and is responsible for all the financial mess that has been going on in the USA from 1913 to the present. Wake Up People! Most of the US presidents from 1913 to present have been owned by the global bankers. The differences that you see and hear in public between the Democrats and Republicans is for your benefit. They want us to argue between our selves so we don't notice what they are doing. Most of us work all the time and say, "I can't keep up with what is going on. I have to work." We work like slaves because nearly half of the money we earned was taken out of our check before we got it. If we weren't taxed so much do you think we would be so dependent on the government? If you had all your money do you think you would be able to do more? Wake Up People!

    37. Bill Arizona says:

      Democrats will start granting statehood to as many places needed to generate a majority. My understanding is Uganda, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Mongolia are all meeting with Nancy Pelosi this week to negotiate a statehood deal.

    38. CRAMOS says:

      As a Puerto Rican and a Veteran and A TEA PARTY MEMBER

      I am pleased to see this happen……….by the way those of you who oppose Puerto Rico statehood……Do you know that Puerto Ricans have been drafted into the US military since World War 1?

      We deserve this all politics aside!!! We have earned our right with our blood!

    39. CRAMOS says:

      Do not take it for granted that we Puerto Ricans will vote Democratic……..We are Catholic, Pro Life and Pro Defense

      We hate Chavez and Communist

      God Bless America

    40. JG, USA says:

      Wayne, You are incorrect about the 435 seats. Article 1 section 2 3rd paragraph.

      As the population increases the number of representatives can increase. That is one of the reasons for the census every ten years. The census only needs to know how many people there are. It does not need to know anything else about those people.

      If anyone wants to disagree read the Constitution first.

    41. Pingback: Puerto Rico Statehood Being Pressed - INGunOwners

    42. Pingback: Weasel Zippers » Blog Archive » Unbelievable: Dems Push For Puerto Rico To Become 51st State

    43. Marc Colorado says:

      I say we do NOT need Puerto Rico as a state, commonwealth or anything else associated with the U.S. They should be treated as any other foreigner is treated…with respect…but get to the back of the line and wait on admission papers.

      • Luis Arroyo says:

        Mark, we are not foreigners. We are all Americans by birth! We are natural born US citizens in Puerto Rico. We don't need any stinking admission lines, or visas, you "ignoramoose" lol.

    44. Pingback: Glenn Beck’s dire warning of a vote tomorrow on making Puerto Rico a 51st State- The Right Scoop

    45. mike lyman says:

      I have been to Puerto Rico about 15 times, my daughters are 1/2 Puerto Rican, and I know quite a few from New York. Like the article says, three times they have voted, and three times they have voted to keep it like it is, a "commonwealth"! This is the Democrats ploy to get more liberal voters that are more dependant on government.

      I am against this charade.


    46. RTO Trainer says:

      None of this is a cut and dried as it appears.

      Congress has to pass this act. Then Puerto Rico has to vote, twice. Then Congress has to pass an enabling act authorizing Puerto Rico to write a Consitution. Then Puerto Rico has to write a Constitution, and then ratify it. (This is the big point–even if the process is begun with less than a majority vote, ths can't hapen wihtout it.) Congress has to approve the Constitution–then Puerto Rico becomes a state.

      Some have pointed out that there is a limit on the seats in the House of 435. That's a matter of Federal law (passed in 1911), not of the Constitution and can be easily changed at any time.

    47. Pingback: Glen Meakem | Conservative Talk Show Host » Puerto Rico - The 51st State?

    48. Will, NC says:

      The question is whether the people of Puerto Rico will have an honest opportunity to vote. What are the proposed choices on the ballot? Not as simple as voting without manipulation by those with agendas that run contrary to American values and the constitution.

    49. Dania, Michigan says:

      Your opinion and inclination on this issue rings loud and clear. You do not want Puerto Rico to become a state, period. Now my question is why? Beyond the numbers suggesting that Puerto Ricans will be a burden on taxpayers. I work with numbers and stats and I know they can be presented to support numerous perspectives. I have lived in Puerto Rico most of my life, and the economic situation is not what you think. It's primarily middle class and barely distinguishable, except for cultural elements, from any other state. If Canada wanted to become the 51st state, would you and countless others opposed to Puerto Rican statehood still be opposed?

      I also wanted to point out that in none of the incorporations of a state into the Union has the popular vote in the state (in this case, PR) or the popular vote in the other states (in this case, the rest of the US), ever been a determining factor. Ultimately, it's always been Congress' choice, like it or not. Fair or not, why should PR be any different? A popular vote in the US would only rally anti-"immigrant" (though we are not immigrants) and anti-Hispanic sentiments.

      I believe that the options presented in the legislation are fair. 1) Become independent, 2) Remain associated with the U.S. but NOT subject to the TERRITORIAL clause (as we currently are), and 3) Become a state (with rights equal to other states). The current political status of Puerto Rico renders us SECOND class U.S. citizens. We have some rights, but not others. And we live in what is essentially a territory, though some members of Congress and the Popular Democratic Party in PR like to call it a Commonwealth.

      With regards to allowing Puerto Ricans in the U.S. to vote, I have mixed feelings.

      I applaud the intent to limit it to Puerto Ricans born on the island because, in theory (assuming that you didn't leave PR as a child), we are more in tune with the social and political climate in Puerto Rico and can make a more informed decision. Puerto Rican-descendants, not born on the island, should not vote. They have never lived there and know very little of the realities of life there. Would the U.K. allow all of its descendants in the U.S. to vote on something that would have an enormous impact the U.K.'s economic, political, and social issues? Of course not.

      On the other hand, as you might guess from my previous comment, I believe that current residents of the island have the most to lose or gain from this decision and should be the ones to make it. If I chose to leave, I would accept not having a say.

      But remember, this "vote" in only a referendum, it is Congress that ultimately makes the decision.

    50. Carol - Spartanburg, says:

      Perhaps this should be done in the future but how convenient to do it right before the elections! Another Obama design!

    51. Hector from Brooklyn says:

      My grandfather won a silver Star Purple heart and various other medals and awards for his service in the USA Army during WWII . Being drafted off his farm in Puerto Rico .. Family members have gave the ultimate sacrafice in the US armed forces .. all this while NONE of them had the right to even vote for the president that sent them to war and some their death.. here is another as a school child in NYC public schools i learned that this country was made because of the taxation with representation.. remeber the boston tea party? In P.R. coffee which is made there cost more there.. Kinda sounds like America Is doing the same to Puerto Rico as England did to The original 13 colonies and how did they react?????? just food for thought

    52. Hector from Brooklyn says:


    53. Jim Florida says:

      I am an American and a conservative. Yet, I want statehood for my Puerto Rican friends! I think the Demonrats will be shocked if it happens and they see how many are upstanding, family valued, christians who by the way are NOT looking for handouts!

      What does it say for the Democrats opinion of these people, when they are obviously doing this assuming the majority of people in PR are looking for handouts and will help them get relelected for freebies?!?!?!?

      They are in for a surprise!

      Wake up people, the Dems need you poor and dependent to keep their power, while Republicans, at least conservative ones rely on self sufficient people for theirs….Both want power, but what one wants your status to improve to get it!!!

    54. George Maldonado says:

      As a US citizen of Puerto Rican descent I applaud statehood for the Island. It would eliminate the distaste of second class citizenship and give my fathers homeland a voice and vote in my Country. My Uncle who fought in the Korean conflict and was given the Purple Heart his son who went to Vietnam and their children would be full fledged citizens of the Country they fought and got wounded for! As far as we the citizens of the US being allowed to vote for such status would negate the US Congresses responsibility and would be unpresidented!

    55. kiel moore says:

      See mr obama people dont act for leaders thats great in every way but they would like ,you still have to understand a person is a person keep doing right an they will understand ,see know its time to take it up a level ,an what i mean is any means ('for everybody') all people,see people forget good over rules bad ,see people have to smile an that basic i know u will understand

    56. Peggy Martinez, Cali says:

      This is a deceitful power grab for Democrats and a blatant attempt to change the very makeup of the U.S Congress in order to MAINTAIN THE POWER AND CONTROL OF THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY and PREVENT their defeat on the elections of 2010.

      Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, and barack obama are now showing their true colors — THEY WILL DO ANYTHING TO MAINTAIN THEIR GRIP AROUND THE NECK OF AMERICA!

    57. PR Conservative, NY says:




      Dwyer Arce – you want another Welfare state – YOU PAY FOR IT.

      Dems don't give a d–n about people unless they can use them to consolidate power (see: African-Americans).

      Yours truly,

      Puerto Rican Conservative

    58. in_awe says:

      Lots to say about this:

      1. It is an election year act designed by the Democrats to force Republicans to support the measure or face the Democrats screaming about how "racist" the Republicans are to oppose: democracy and possible statehood for an Hispanic territory. A nice way to activate the Hispanic oter base in time for the November elections.

      2. The past plebiscites in PR allowed choices: a) remain a Commonwealth b) independence and c) statehood. Choices b and c have lost 4 times in 60 years.

      3. The proposed bill will have a two step process:

      – The first will ask if voters are happy with the status quo: "Yes" or "No"

      – If the plurality votes for "No", then a second election is called

      – In the second election the options exclude Commonwealth status, and force a choice between independence and statehood

      – Since the bill doesn't require a majority of all voters, merely a plurality of those who do vote, the ability of activists to force the statehood outcome in these circumstances is high

      The New Progressive Party of PR has a stated mission of forcing statehood for PR through a mechanism called the "Tennessee Plan". By emulating the actions of activists seeking to make TN the 16th state, the plan is to get the statehood vote on the second election then quickly elect or appoint Senators and Representatives and send them to the halls of Congress and demand that they be seated without a vote in Congress. Anyone in opposition would (again) be labeled a racist.

      So, this bill will enable a fast track to statehood for PR even when the majority of Puerto Ricans have voted time and again in opposition, and force Congress to prospectively act without real debate (again) against the wishes of the mainland American voter and acquiesce to activist tactics.

      As to the whole question of whether the citizens of PR have "earned the right" to demand statehood. It seems that federal tax dollars have been flowing in large amounts to PR without its citizens paying US taxes. Given the low per capita income of islanders and the fact that 47% of current US households don't pay federal income taxes, I don't see how some people can argue that PR will start paying its way under statehood. As to military service – I thank everyone who has served in the US military. I am sure that many Puerto Ricans chose to serve for the same reasons that mainland citizens did – patriotism, training, pay, an escape from their present circumstances, etc.

      This is a cynical action of the left to realize a goal that would further entrench the Democrats in power in US national politics for an extended period of time, and worsen the climate of politics in the US. It is a dangerous game the Democrats are playing and may set things in motion that have the potential to lead to unfortunate outcomes.

      • Luis Arroyo says:

        If you are so concerned with PRcans paying Federal taxes, and paying their own way…IMPOSE THEM! Oh wait…..that makes Puerto Rico an INCORPORATED ela/commonwealth. And all historical US incorporated territories become states. Congreses hesitation to admit PR as a state, is the reason it allows PR to mooch off of Mainland taxpayers. Some facts…98% of Puerto Ricans want permanent union and Citizenship with US. 46 to 55% want statehood and willing to pay their way. The other 45% are deceived into thinking the commomwealth territory can be " enhanced" to state powers, as well as semi dependence with special nation in nation status. This is unconstitutional. And the white house task force(started under Bush and Clinton) suggested that only Statehood/Independence w/or without free association are the ONLY constitutional options. It went on to suggest commonwealth will now be an incorporated US territory with federal taxes. No more freebies. My gut feeling is that Congress will upgrade the commonwealth to Incorporated territory. This makes PR a part of USA with US citizenship safe forever,but with federal taxes.Congress can then delay statehood indefinitely untill taxation w/o representation leads to a Tennessee plan.

      • Luis Arroyo says:

        I thought maybe you made a mistake when you wrote quote…."If a plurality votes yes for change, a second vote…." Er no. If a plurality votes yes…it means the MAJORITY voted no! Im on to your deceitfull twist of words. Elections are decided based on the outcome of those who voted. Puerto Rican voter turnout is 80% average. They are passionate for political status and other votes. Compare PR voter turnout with the pathetic 30 to50% at best US turnout for Presidential Elections. By your own plurality theory, Obama, our President, is illegitimate,since less than 60% of eligible voters showed up!

      • Luis Arroyo says:

        If you are so concerned with PRcans paying Federal taxes, and paying their own way…IMPOSE THEM! Oh wait…..that makes Puerto Rico an INCORPORATED ela/commonwealth. And all historical US incorporated territories become states. Congreses hesitation to admit PR as a state, is the reason it allows PR to mooch off of Mainland taxpayers. Some facts…98% of Puerto Ricans want permanent union and Citizenship with US. 46 to 55% want statehood and willing to pay their way. The other 45% are deceived into thinking the commomwealth territory can be " enhanced" to state powers, as well as semi dependence with special nation in nation status. This is unconstitutional. And the white house task force(started under Bush and Clinton) suggested that only Statehood/Independence w/or without free association are the ONLY constitutional options. It went on to suggest commonwealth will now be an incorporated US territory with federal taxes. No more freebies. My gut feeling is that Congress will upgrade the commonwealth to Incorporated territory. This makes PR a part of USA with US citizenship safe forever,but with federal taxes.Congress can then delay statehood indefinitely untill taxation w/o representation leads to a Tennessee plan.

    59. Patrick, AZ says:

      Dwyer Arce

      You make some legitimate points (right up until the end – Puerto Rico has voted 4 times and rejected statehood each time), but something seems fishy here. Why is Congress trying to push something this important under the radar? Why one vote to decide if they would like to change their status and then a second vote to decide on which change to make? And why three choices? Seems like the authors of the bill have a desired outcome and are trying to change the odds to their favor.

      • Luis Arroyo says:

        The reason we need a federal vote,is because only Congress will present the true real options it will consider. While the Republican PNP statehood party and the Independence parties submit true status options,…the self named" popular democrats party" refuses to back its own current commonwealth, insists on a lie that PR is already a "free associated state" now they admit it never was, so now they boycott or tell their blind followers to write in" none of the above" Most commonwealthers are so because they fear US rejection of Statehood, think its a pipe dream and will settle for" the best of both worlds" without US taxes.98% of democrat voters there in PR want permanent union with USA, that's why the popular democrats are now hiding their free association idea! And wont cooperate on a status vote. If forced to choose,between Independence and statehood, they will go for Statehood.

    60. Salvadore Lopez , Du says:

      And a little something for my fellow Puertoricans ' No se dejen engañar mas por un pequeño grupo de subversivos ignorantes de la isla que no ven mas alla de sus narices. Como estado tendriamos no solo el derecho a varias sillas en el congreso y senado sino que podriamos tener un candidato a la presidencia de los Estados Unidos y eso es lo que los asusta y usan su labia para engañar a los pocos ignorantes que ni siquiera quedan inscritos como partido en nuestras elecciones, como pais independiente nos tendriamos que asociar con otro pais para subsitir que pais Pues el mejor Estados Unidos no con chavez pa chavarnos. Entonces una republica asociada a los E.U. no tiene sentido porque estariamos igual que lo que estamos ahora sin poder de votar ni poder en el congreso. Una vez conoci un sur americano que me dijo que anualmente le enviaban a la iglesias catolicas y protestantes por trasmano millones de dolares para evitar que legalizen la mariguana, le pregunte por que y me dijo la gente se cansarian de las drogas si fuesen legal y nosotros perderiamos billones de dolares de ingreso. Esto es igual, si somos el estado 51 nuestra influencia con los latinos seria tanto que un presidente Puertoriqueño de los E.U. seria lo proximo y despues leyes mas justas para nuestros hermanos latinos seguirian. Boricuas es hora de que Puerto Rico sea un estado lla hemos deramado mucha sangre en sus guerras y conflictos y todavia muchos siguen ignorantes de quienes somos. Es hora de que nuestros hijos despierten y no sean engañados por educadores subversivos en nuestras universidades que no suman un porciento de nuestra poblacion. Se recuerdan de Vieques por culpa de unos cuantos perdimos a Roosvelt y otros puntos de defensa para nosotros, no todo PR estaba con vieques, yo se los hubiese dado al navy para que lo hicieran un queso suizo. Que van ha hacer cuando la isla se vaya a pique irse a venezuela con chavez para que les diga que pueden decir y que no. NO van a volar a los ESTADOS UNIDOS. no sean hipocritas, despierten lla.

    61. Pingback: Puerto Rico could soon get much more of your money too. - Nissan Titan Forum

    62. Ray Herrick Paradise says:

      I was born in Honolulu,Hawaii when it was a territory of the USA. We had laws that fit an island that saves its recources. Such as no buildings over Four stories high in most places. Land was affordable to the people of the island. It statehood affects the native people and their culture, this is always contested tell this day.

      I say if the people are residents of the island and wish to have statehood, thats their choice. However, I believe their choice would be to stay as a territory.

      Islands like these are GEMS OF THE EARTH


      Ray H. Herrick

    63. Brent says:

      I welcome PR if they vote to come in. It is my understanding that they pay less in federal taxes but this is made up for with higher territorial taxes.

      Will they vote democratic…maybe.

      Maybe they will be more conservative. The Republicans should court their vote.

    64. Ramon, San Juan, PR says:

      Interesting fact: every Republican presidential nominee since Reagan as far as I can remember has endorsed statehood for PR. The reason: secure our delegates to the GOP Convention. Although here in PR we cannot vote in presidential or congressional elections we do have Democrat and Republican primaries every 4 years for President.

      Last time the US Congress was serious about Puerto Rico's political status was in 1998 when a referendum bill introduced by Alaska Congressman Don Young. It passed the House by a single vote (218-217). The bill eventually died in the Senate.

      Before the Young bill there were efforts in Congress from 1989 to 1991 that were led by former Louisiana Senator J. Bennett Johnston which were stalled in conference committee.

    65. Deets McCullen, Nort says:

      If we admit Puerto Rico, it would be like admittilng Mexico. Another bunch of free loaders that would use Medicaid, Medicare, and Social Security benefits that the US Budget can not afford. It is a bad idea and should not happen. They would also use Free Food Stamps and all the other welfare programs. Forget making it a state.

      Deets McCullen

    66. Hall, Idaho says:

      I agree that Puerto Ricans should be allowed to vote on whether they wish to be a state. The question brought to a vote, however, should be a straightforward one such as "Do you want Puerto Rico to be admitted to the United States of America as a state?" The question under discussion is something like "Do you want to maintain the current status quo?"

      This question is a form of trickery: Almost no one wants to maintain the status quo about anything; that said, the changes to the status quo would postulate a huge spectrum of options depending on the desires of the individual.

      This question would throw out the current status of Puerto Rico and propose statehood as one of several undesirable options, so that Puerto Ricans would choose statehood as the only decent choice.. It's like asking someone "Do you want flat cola, weak tea or coffee?" But not mentioning that there is juice, milk, hot chocolate etc. Coffee is better than the other two options, so it will be chosen.

      The Dems have an agenda and are manipulating voters to get what they want. To ignore this is folly. Nevertheless, it may backfire on them.

      Vote No on this bill, insist that Congress phrase the question for a vote in a straightforward manner.

    67. Chisco, United States says:


    68. Jorge born in PR, lives in NM says:

      @Anglo resident in Hatillo, PR: Good point!

      Saw Glenn Back discussing this on Fox News and I couldn’t resist the urge to comment on this. First, I am a politically-Moderate Puerto Rican-American. I was born in Puerto Rico, but have mostly grown up in the states, in contrast to Anglo Resident in Hatillo, PR (whose perspective on this issue is highly valuable).
      Many are pairing this INCREDIBLY DYNMANIC, 112 year old colonial issue with the larger immigration problem and spinning them into a grand liberal conspiracy to secure the hispanic Democratic vote. If this is in fact the case, rest assured your US politicians, pundits and/or the media are doing this, not the residents of PR. I can assure you that equating Puerto Ricans and the broader Hispanic population is a BIG mistake; to do so flaws your argument and may make you APPEAR racist towards Hispanics, because this is the ONLY thing they fundamentally share in common.
      The fact is that Puerto Ricans on the island have dealt extensively with illegal immigrants from elsewhere in the Caribbean crossing onto US soil, causing the SAME problems and frustrations that most ARIZONA residents have been dealing with (jobs, crime, etc). Puerto Ricans don’t just instinctively and unilaterally sympathize with the Hispanic illegal immigrant’s “situation” because, like all of you, we were BORN American citizens and enjoyed many of the same privileges that go along with citizenship. We’ve faught and died alongside residents from every other US state to defeat Nazi Facism, deny Communist advancement and promote Liberty. Those that promote statehood in PR (most that have served in the US military and/or have lived state-side extensively) do so with a sense of national pride and with the belief that we, as Puerto Rican-Americans, have something to contribute to the American Union, even moreso than as a US Territory.
      I could go on and on, but believe me when I say that the people of Puerto Rico are NOT a politically-homogeneous population. They have political conservatives and liberals battling over the SAME issues the other states battle over.
      The facts of this issue have been spun and much of the information in this article is flawed. Please do your own research before taking some else’s word as fact, ESPECIALLY in politics.

    69. Pingback: H.R. 2499: Puerto Rico Democracy Act of 2009 - The Central Illinois 9/12 Project

    70. laura says:

      As far as Congress voting to allow a new state in – that was when reps in Congress were APPOINTED by the States. This Government is not the original design of the framers – and central government reps with no submission to state legislatures should NOT be allowed to vote on something so significant as a new state to the union. Those decisions should be by the STATE and the PEOPLE.

      Never mind. Major secession coming.

    71. Angel Vega says:

      If the arrogant Democrats have their way and force this upon the Island of Puerto Rico, I shudder to think of how the people on the island would react to this infringement. I have been there during elections, and they do take things seriously. The residents of the commonwealth may resort to civil disobedience in the worst way.

    72. Pingback: Hot Air » Blog Archive » House to vote on Puerto Rico statehood bill tomorrow

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    75. Debbie NC says:

      Why is this coming up in Congress right now? Why the rush? Why is Puerto Rico not the ones bring this up? Three times PR have voted no. They protested to rid their island of our military. Where is PR on the liberal news rallying for statehood? How come it takes years for congress to make any decision, but lately it is done over night? The trust in our government is gone by the citizens. If I were PR I would be afraid of a screw job. You know it is there somewhere.

    76. Luci, IA says:

      We the Puerto Ricans have serve the United States in war and lost our men to these wars. If we could fight for the state we should be part of the states. It has been a long time that we are only a Common Wealth Country of the states, it is time that politics and racism be left aside and see things as they really are, stop using people as pawns and give them their well deserve rights.

    77. Beth, Virginia says:

      Cramos and other Puerto Ricans who want to be annexed: I don't think any of us have anything against Puerto Rico itself — we simply see this as a ploy by the left to USE you for political gain for the left. NOTHING this administration does is simply for the good of the action — it's to deprive liberties, stifle free speech, quash rights, and harm our country.

    78. Beth, Virginia says:

      Luci, you've got it ALL wrong. Your statehood is being considered by Obama simply because of your race. He thinks if he annexes Puerto Rico, he gets more liberal votes and that your people will be a gateway for Mexicans and other hispanics. He's brought this out NOW, when Arizona toughened their immigration laws, in order to get people riled up on race. I don't CARE about the race of the people there — I don't like the dirty tactics used in order to try to secure political brownie points. Do you like being used ONLY so that you can further one party's cause instead of because you are held to be of worth? You're only valuable to Obama if you people vote for him and the left, and that's what he's counting on. You're being used, we're being duped, and they think we don't see it.

    79. Beth, Virginia says:

      Jorge in NM: I for one know this is a political ploy. From what I've heard, three different times PR voted on whether they wanted statehood, and three times they voted against it (though I don't know how long ago the last vote was). However, what THIS administration is doing is fiddling with the wording to almost force it to happen. Like Glenn was saying, the wording is, "Do you like the status quo." If people vote NO, then it opens the door for them to wiggle a "yes for statehood" vote out of it. They're being disingenuous in how they're going about it, which is typical. The left never seems to do anything above-board without some form of trickery and maniuplation.

      The timing of this is suspect as well. It's like he is fully intent of keeping our heads whipping all over the place as they try this shady tactic and then the next one. Their intent is to keep the people off balance so they can distract us on one thing while doing something else.

      My not wanting this has NOTHING to do with Puerto Rico whatsoever. I just don't trust my government or their intentions.

    80. Sharon in NJ says:

      OK Cramos and Jim from Florida…and Pat and Ramsey…you have enlightened me , and I believe you are Right also! I have known many PR families in my neighborhood and they are very warm loving God Fearing Families. And especially hard working too. Like Jim says — “What does it say for the Democrats opinion of these people, when they are obviously doing this assuming the majority of people in PR are looking for handouts and will help them get relelected for freebies?!?!?!?”

      THIS GOV’t thinks people ( other than themselves) are STUPID! I also think that most immigrants coming to this Country come here for Freedom and Liberty! And I think everyone on the Outside looking IN is more aware of their AGENDA than our own Koolaid drinking Democrats (even in my own family) who dont see Our party has
      been Hijacked by the Marxists! BO may just be in for a RUDE AWAKENING!

      God Bless you all and YES …you all do DESERVE TO BE US CITIZENS IF THAT IS WHAT YOU WISH!!!


    81. Sunnyr, the great No says:

      I am concerned about the tricks that this power-hungry administration may try to use to "force" statehood on PR, whether they want it or not. I have no trust in Comrade Obama or the Liberal/Progressive Congress. They are hungry for votes and will do ANYTHING, including manipulating words to mean something just the opposite of what they appear to mean. The Progressive Party in PR are planning on using the "Tennessee Plan" to achieve statehood, through the back door, with the full approval of this "president" and congress. The people of PR may have no choice in the matter. I encourage a NO vote on this Bill.

    82. Mary Kay Bachman- La says:

      If the Puerto Ricans want statehood, then why aren't they being given the vote before Congress votes on it for them?

      According to Congressman Luis Gutierrez of the 4th congressional district of Ilinois, "In my opinion, this bill is the political equivalent of a shady Goldman Sachs derivative: It's secretive. It lacks transparency. It's likely to blow up down the road and cause systemic risk to out democracy. And those who put this political derivative together don't really tell you what this is really about and will play dumb when it explodes."

      Rep. Gutierrez is also a native Puerto Rican.

      hen a similar Puerto Rico bill came up under Speaker Newt Gingrich's Republican controlled Congress a decade ago, it was the product of lengthy and thorough hearings and an open and fair process. Now, under Democratic Leadership, we get one hearing, no forewarning, no companion Senate bill, and a debate only a few seconds longer than a NASCAR pit-stop.

      Then, I was given time to offer seven amendments. Then I was able to clarify the bill for the Puerto Rican people. Then, each of my seven amendments got 30 minutes of floor time for debate. Flash forward to now. Now a Democratic Majority Congress is only allowing me two of the 16 amendments I offered in the Rules Committee on Wednesday. Now I only have 10 minutes to debate each one.

      Then was then this is now.

      This means Speaker Gingrich, not a Speaker I voted for, not MY Speaker, allowed me 210 minutes of debate on my amendments alone, and under Democratic Leadership I get two amendments at ten-minutes each.

      Sounds fishy to me!

      • Luis Arroyo says:

        Luis Guttierez is a left wing communist, anti American. He has publickly defended Fidel Castro spoke out against America" picking on dictators". Admired Sadaam Hussein and Momar Khadaffi!. He's a fanatic for Puerto Rico's Independence and has vocally supported the PR terrorists who shot up the very same Congress he sits in. He's a disgrace! He left PR to enjoy the rights and benefits of statehood. In Illinois,while denying island PRcans a vote! ! He'd. Never be a representative in PR…they have no representation in Congress!

    83. Pingback: American Glob » Blog Archive » Who Needs Jobs? We Need to Focus on Important Things Like Statehood for Puerto Rico!

    84. Eric M. Tampa, FL says:

      I have been on the island during one of the three mock referendums to chose between Statehood, independence and the current status. And let me start by saying that was the most flawed process I've ever seen. Miss-information from all three camps, unfortunately there are three political parties on the island that align with each choice.

      I heard some the most miss-informed politicians rattle off the negative changes that the Island would suffer during that time. Sadly, back then information wasn't available like it is today. There was no internet and Satellite Systems were out of reach for the common hard working citizen. Cable systems were sparse, except if you lived in the capital and it's outlying areas.

      Here are some examples that come to mind (remember it's been over 20 years since this event):

      * Property taxes will skyrocket – I've been looking at my tax bill for last year and I think the only non-state or local assessments are the water district and environmental impact fees (less than $80 last year). And I could be wrong about that as well.

      * Loss of Cultural Identity – While I agree that requiring that all communication be made in English may have a an impact on culture, it will not completely overwrite the culture of a people. Look at Hawaii, they needed to speak English and they transitioned just fine, while still keeping their identity. Besides, there are areas of Miami that haven't heard an English word in decades and they getting along just fine. Every state in the union still has some part of its own identity and culture, we don't even talk the same English from one state to the next.

      * You will have to pay sales tax "Just like they do in NY" – They do now anyway, enough said.

      * You will have to pay federal Taxes – This is true. But in an island of almost 4 million, my brother once told me that less than 500,000 returns were filed. Either there is an astronomical unemployment rate, the island is comprised of mostly retired elderly and children or (my personal favorite) no one pays their fair share. The truth is that most of the working class on the island does so for minimum wage, and this wage is instituted well after US fed rate has gone up. So if we apply the same IRS laws and rates scales we have today, some citizens would actually receive more money personally (income credits and such).

      The list continues, But I get board.

      What I'm concerned about this issue is the economics of either outcome.

      Let us start with the outcome of statehood, now they have full representation in the house and senate. Can anyone see our greedy little lobbyist salivating over this yet? Next, another one of my favorite parts of the US legislative process (sarcasm for those of you in the cheap seats), is pork barreling, If we send $18 Billion now, it will be twice that the year after they become a state.

      Let's talk about the other outcome. First off I'm a moderate conservative, with this said, it would be inhumane to cut ties with the island and set them a drift. If we did, we would have another Somalia, Haiti and Ethiopia all rolled up into one. Civil war, famine and anarchy. Yet another military policing action to stretch our armed forces and the additional costs that come with this. The island cannot sustain itself.

      There was comment about coffee in Puerto Rico earlier, I think they import most of it from Central and South America just like we do. Agriculture is gone, Industries are gone and to top it all off they kicked the military bases out as well. If memory serves me right, the island is 100 miles by 35 miles. Some of it is protected rain forest, mountainous regions and un-cultivatable (I think it's a word) land. First, I don't think you can feed almost 4 million people and produce enough to export and trade in this size area. Let alone the fact that the majority of the current residents can't plant a foot and I don't see immigrant rushing to a situation worse than the one they left behind.

      The separatist or "Independentistas" as they are called in Spanish, think of a form of life where they will provide for themselves, kidding themselves into thinking that they will be the leader master class. Oddly enough, those shmucks were educated with US grants and student loans, Money from a country they hate so much.

      While I agree, the choice to become a state should lie entirely on the hands of the residents of the territory. I would have to say, it's time to eliminate one of these options and make the process about a true choice (as true as it can be, given aftermath of either outcome). The current status should NOT be offered as an option. The people should choose one or the other. After all, when we vote for local amendments we don't get a third choice to vote "Maybe". Statehood, "Yes" or "No", period.

      If you haven't guessed by now, I'm of Puerto Rican decent, my family has served proudly in every branch of the armed forces and in every theater since WWII, They have sacrificed a lot for this country but make no mistake, this country has done more for them than they can ever repay. I am proud to be an american and love this country.

      I'm leaning toward statehood, with some concerns and everyone needs to pay their fair share.

    85. Lydia Rodriguez de C says:



    86. sbeihl says:

      You had my "only incumbent" vote until you co-sponsored this detrimental plan to encourage? Puerto Rico statehood. I will add that my stand on this issue has absolutely nothing to do with anything other than it is a ploy for the Demorats to gain additional votes. When will this ongoing nightmare end???

    87. Ramsey Caraballo says:

      People need to understand that the New Progressive Party in PR, is in most part a Conservative Party. Pro life, small goverment, strong defense, fiscal responsibility. Do not blame the American citizens of PR for wanting to have the same rights. We are Americans who happen to have been born in PR.

    88. Yoly, Florida says:

      Would the cost to bring Pr up to par administratively with other US states and the added financial burden to Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, etc offset the federal income taxes collected from PR? Probably not.

    89. secretazn, MidWest says:

      I have served with Puerto Ricans in the military and they are hard workers with more national pride for both PR and USA, more than others in this country. None of them want PR to become a state. Leave that decision up to their own country and not the Democratic Liberals who are trying to drag them in the same hole the Dems have already dug for themselves. The US is have too many issues dividing this nation (US) as is and can't drag PR into this.

    90. Eneida says:

      I am in favor of Puerto Rico becoming the 51st state. I have been in this country for 60 years and I love my country. My grandfather fought in WW1, my uncle in the Korean War and my husband in Vietnam. Many Puerto Ricans have shed their blood for the United States and it is about time we get recognized as first class citizens.

    91. EP Sato, DC says:

      This is a first for me. I'm a fairly progressive Puerto Rican and tend to support the Democrats. It's rare the writers for the Heritage Foundation and I are on the same page. We may have arrived at our conclusions for different reasons, but on this issue we are allied.

      I do have one minor point of contention with the article. The majority of Puerto Ricans who live in the US are actually opposed to statehood. Puerto Ricans who live in the US by far tend to identify as Puerto Rican first and as Americans second. If Puerto Ricans who reside in the US were eligible to vote on status, it's likely the commonwealth option would remain.

      Now, here's my ideas on how to stop this legislation:

      Back in 1998, a few progressive Democrats teamed up with the most conservative elements of the GOP to knock down HR 856, also known as "the Young Bill". The Young Bill was another attempt to fast track Puerto Rican statehood.

      To defeat this initiative, opponents of the legislation cast a shadow of doubt over the Puerto Rican Statehood Party's claim that statehood would allow Puerto Rico to maintain it's current identity while claiming all the goodies of statehood. The strategy of proving "you can't have it both ways" helped cast enough doubt on the Young Bill that it never came before the Senate even after passing the House by 1 vote.

      The statehood party in Puerto Rico often makes the argument that if Puerto Rico were to become a state, it would be possible for Spanish to remain the island's official language and that Puerto Rico would be still eligible to maintain a Ms. Universe contestant and Olympic team (don't laugh. Both of these are HUGE deals to every day Puerto Ricans on and off the island).

      One key to knocking down this legislation is to prove that the so called "estado jibaro" (the "jibaro state") is an impossible lie. Most important is to make a big deal about the language issue.

      Since the rule on this legislation is closed, amendments have to be specific to Puerto Rico's status. Thus, passing amendments that would require Puerto Ricans to officially speak English as a requirement for statehood would put a heavy rain over the statehood party's parade.

      The closed rule may prevent this, but an amendment to include statehood for ALL territories at once (Guam, DC, Virgin Islands, Samoa, etc) might help knock down this bill as well.

      Members of the right side of American politics, you're our only hope at stopping this bill. Unless you act now, you will soon see a new state with two Democratic Senators, five Democratic Congressmen, 3.5 million Spanish Speaking US residents with full voting rights, and five electoral votes for the Democrats for the next few Presidential elections.

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    93. Rivertownjack, Minne says:

      I say yes, let them achieve statehood after we reduce our debt to an acceptable level and balance the federal budget. Are we not in enough trouble as it is?

    94. Liquidsnake says:

      I'd have no problem with Puerto Rico becoming a state if they were not being lied to about the whole process and further do not take away representation from the 50 states who don't have any representation in congress in the first place. Yes, if Puerto Rico becomes a state they should receive 2 US Senators. But to take 6 congressional districts away from the 435 fixed congressional districts in the US is immoral. The solution increase representation in congress. Puerto Rico can add the 6 congressional seats they do not take seats away from Montana, California, Kentucky, Hawaii, etc. Can you see why congress doesn't care about you, me, or Puerto Rico? Check out http://www.thirty-thousand.org an you'll know why.

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    97. Greg, Abita Springs says:

      The United States, can not protect the boarders it has now. What reason would it have to add new ones.

    98. J. Serrano, Puerto R says:

      Its interesting to see so many people believe this is going to be a Dem. State. They thought the same about Hawaii and Alaska (Hawaii for GOP and Alaska for DNC) and look at what happened. To those who do not know the full history, almost every president of the US was in favor of statehood if so people wanted it (including Reagan and the Bushes). The people pushing this motion from PR are not Marxists or leftists. As a matter of fact it is the other way around. The people against the democracy act on the island are the ones openly in favor of Marxists and leftists agendas even admitting they would love to follow the Hugo Chavez agenda on PR. That is why they don't want this or any project coming out of US Congress trying to solve the issue. They want to keep pushing their agenda without loosing the money sent by the US. It is time for the US to finally put an end to this shameful chapter in our history.

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    101. Reality Check says:

      This is a specially designed process carefully crafted to gut the long standing requirement that a majority of those voting must vote for statehood in a simple up or down vote.

      Attempts to confuse the issue with vague statements about what "might" be true is just static and noise to distract from the true intent of this bill.

      A minority will be able to force the entire Island of Puerto Rico to join the United States as a state.

      The political party pushing statehood in Puerto Rico intends to use a minority vote in Puerto Rico and a proven short cut method to make Puerto Rico the 51st state. The voters of Puerto Rico have repeatedly refused to give statehood a majority vote – but this will eliminate the need for a majority vote for statehood entirely from the process.

      This written short-cut plan for statehood eliminates several requirements:

      1. They will need less than 50% percent of the votes cast by the people of Puerto Rico to be in favor of state hood for Puerto Rico.

      2. They will elect two ( 2 ) U.S. Senators and six (6) U.S. Representatives after a MINORITY has voted for satehood.

      3. The Senators and Representatives will travel to Washington D.C. and demand to be seated.

      2. The Democrats who run Congress will avoid the need to have the U.S. Congress vote to accept Puerto Rico's application and instead the Democratic leadership of Congress will simply seat two ( 2 ) Senators and six ( 6 ) U.S. Congressman from Puerto Rico without Congress actually voting to accept Puerto Rico as a state.

      This same method allowing Congress to avoid voting to accept Tennessee's application for statehood was used to make Tennessee a de-facto state and Tennessee remains a state with all the rights and electoral votes that go along with being a state.

    102. Albert, California says:

      As a Puerto Rico born, I would like Puerto Rico to become a state. I believe it's time for Puerto Ricans living in Puerto Rico, to contribute with taxes, not only taking tax money as it has for so long. Now, let me understand this, lot of you, most likely republicans, are using this issue to attack democrats and President Obama. Lets really concentrate on the actual issue. I did not hear you all complaining about George Bush presidency when he send us to Iraq war when there was not a threat from Iraq. It was just a way to finish what daddy did not get to finish. The culprit of the attack of Sept 11, 2001 still at large. All military resources were put in Iraq to get rid-off Saddam Hussein. Well bravo, Mr Bush accomplished that. Saddam Hussein removed from this planet. Let me ask you, where's Osama Bin laden? He is the one behind Sept 11, not Saddam Hussein. Let me ask you this, was Obama responsible to make more enemies for this country, no…was Bush, by using lies and deception to go attack Iraq, and by spitting on the Geneva Convension that we, United States co authored, something that every or at least great mayority of other countries respected us for being the most fair and humane country in this planet. Now think a little bit more, Obama is the one making this countries that under Bush became our enemies come back onboard as our friends. Now with that out of my chest, let me get back to the Puerto Rico issue. Puertoricans like myself, I may add, very proud to serve this nation in the military can serve, protect and even die for this country but the puertoricans that reside in Puerto Rico cannot vote for congress and/or President even though we can join the military directly from there. The puertoricans that now reside here on main land do have that priviledge and right to vote for President and Congress, but not from there. Don't you think that by having more tax payers be beneficial to United States. I believe it wil make our nation, yes.. I claim United States of America as my nation, more stronger both economically and as a democracy. That's of course, if you want another communism like Cuba, or Venezuela. Oh, hell I forgot, Hugo Chavez, the one that hated Bush, even called him "The Devil", now he is friends with USA thanks to who……? Obama.

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    104. Albert, California says:

      Greg, no new borders be added, it's "borders" been protected for long time now, lets see, since 1898.

    105. Gino WI says:

      The bottom line is they do not what this But as always the politicians think they know better so they will try every trick to try and legally manipulate the vote. Why should they want this they get all the benefits they want, don’t have to follow the laws they don’t want to All without paying federal income taxes. I wish my state of Wisconsin could get the same deal. They will never vote for it. (Progressives reed the posts here by the people that live in Porto Rico but then you probably think you know better then them)

    106. Salvadore Lopez , Du says:

      well my last two comments were deleted because they hit the target. Puertoricans are already american citizens. We already receive medicaid, medicare, food stamps, section 8, wic and everything else we just do not pay federal taxes. So does it not make more sense to make it a state and pay our share of federal taxes too. We have a governour on the island, our president is the President of the United States and when we live on the mainland that is in any of the 50 states we automaticly have voting rights. So the over 8-10 million american puertoricans already vote. And the majority of the over 6 million american puertoricans on the island are republican. Clean enough to leave my point of view darling.

    107. ken, blythe says:

      why not bring Guam in the fold while we are at it.

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    109. Pat, GA says:

      What is the U.S.government doing? I don't recall hearing Puerto Rico asking the U.S. Congress to admit PR as the 51st State. As I recall, the people of PR have on previous ocassions, voted and rejected statehood. When the people of PR want statehood they will let us know. Until then, the U.S. government has many other issues they need to be spending time working on. What's that, unemployment is still above 10%? You'd think that would take presidence over trying to force another group of people into something they clearly don't want. Change you can believe in! Yeah right. At one time I believed in Santa Claus and the Tooth Fair. Today, all I get for Christmas are more bills and the Tooth Fairy has come to visit for 40 years…..

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    111. Aracelis Dreher, PA says:

      My father is American, born in PA and my mother is Puerto Rican, born in Humacao. I was born in PA. Am I Puerto Rican? Well, I mean enough to vote on this? When I visit PR, will I be allowed to speak Spanish? Leave PR alone. It is fine how it is. Don't forget to ask the people of Guam, Samoa, and the Virgin Islands if they want statehood. Anybody living in the Mariana Islands? 51 states, NO! 56, YES!

    112. Romero, Ft. Lauderda says:

      I have read. with great interest, most of the bloggs that have been written. I was born in Puerto Rico and lived most of my life in Ohio. I am 64 years old. Served during the Vietnam War. I knew many Puerto Rican friends from Puerto Rico and the United States that died in Vietnam.

      When I when to college in Cleveland Ohio, I recall discussion in history classes concerning the idea of Puerto Rico becoming a state. One thing that came out loud and clear was that many American Citizens did not want a Spanish speaking state to become a state. Another was the fact that Puerto Rico with such a large population would have more representives than some larger states who did not have a large population.

      I can see the ugly face of racism and politics showing its face in many of these bloggs. It is no wonder why this country is still so divided and people do not trust each other.

      If any of you have been following the census of this country you know that the make up of this country is quickly changing. Should we continue to be a divided country? It is time to grow up and work together to united this country.

    113. politicaljules tx says:

      Not many people are aware of this, but the governor of PR JUST LAST MONTH passed a law that all of the birth certificates were invalid. He is forcing the people to reapply saying that identity theft is rampant for his excuse, but that is a lie. He has stacked the deck so the people of puerto rico will not be able to vote down statehood like they have in the past.

      The governor claims to be a republican but he is the worst rino you have ever seen. He supports every obama initiative and supports obama himself.

      This is illegal corruption at it's finest and no one will do a thing about it. Mark my words, obama will get a second term. It sickens me that this corrupt group of individuals is running our country and there is not one lawful person or group willing to take it on and make it stop. We just run around throwing tea parties and they just laugh.

    114. M.J.O'NEill says:

      Puerto Rico is not welcome as another member of the State of the Union of 50 states.. They, not of their own doing, would be another liability on my country's limited and severly stretched financial reserves. Recent P.R. news opinions page coverage, indicates that most Puerto Ricans prefer to remain automonous. Besides, an issue on this order of national importance should allow for the opinion of the American people.

      The whole national security structure, currently being developed for the protection of the United States, would have to be re engineered to cover various unknowns relative to the inclusion of this tiny country as another State of the Union. We, as a nation, have much more important cultural fixes fo concentrate on before we open another potential can of worms. this is definately not the time. I would vote no.

    115. Anton in Cascadia says:

      This is a job for approval voting.

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    117. face-palmer says:

      I say not to worry Anglos.

      First many peeps don't know PR is a commonwealth let alone a US territory, that most of its residents since 1917 are American citizens. That seats can change with population shifts.

      That PR will never become the state even if it gets 98% of the vote, highly unlikely, it'll be struck down by congress. So fear not status-quo will remain and they'll proudly remain ignorant as second class US citizens.

    118. Alfred, Puerto Rico, USA says:

      Current Governor of Puerto Rico is REPUBLICAN!!!!! and won by wide margin over Democrat former candidate. We pay USTAXES, Social Security, serve in the Army, and our blood has been present in WORLD WAR 1, WORLD WAR 2, KOREA, VIETNAM, IRAK 1, IRAK 2, AFGANISTAN, KOSOVO, I WANT TO BE FULL AMERICAN….PROUDLY TO BE AMERICAN!!!…LIKE HAWAII, ALASKA, GEORGIA, UTAH….

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    121. Chris, USA says:

      Why should non-Puerto Rican Americans get a say whether Puerto Rican residents want to be subjected to statehood? That makes absolutely no sense. I also don't agree that Puerto Rican non-Puerto Rican Resident Americans should vote with Puerto Rican residents. It makes NO sense.

      This seems to be the same Conservative BS that is so prevalent when a Democratic majority. Are you Conservatives upset, that Puerto Ricans will increase the Democratic Majority so you have to complain about a 51st state? If the Puerto Rican residents WANT statehood, they should get a say.

      Of course Conservatives want to keep people from voting because they are scared their chances of a majority will go down. It's such a game.

    122. Constance, Minnesota says:

      Someone up above wrote "This bill is written and supported by the New Progressive Party (Marxists) and radical leftist control freaks. Just another power grabbing, gerrymandering, voter stockpiling for the Dems"

      Actually, the NPP is the conservative party of Puerto Rico. Its President, the very popular Luis Fortuño, is a member of the US Republican Party. The party itself is strongly aligned and affiliated with the GOP. Perhaps one reason why Reagan, Bush Sr. , and Bush Jr. all spoke in favor of statehood for Puerto Rico.

      A little knowledge, or barring that a little google, is your friend.

    123. Leonardo, Mayaguez, Puerto Rico says:

      Mr Brian Darlin. You seem to be a well educated person but you are not a puertoriquen living in Puerto Rico. You know nothing of our political reality. All you know is based on history written on paper that in no way tells the truth and the circumstances of the results in the rigged elections during the three times that we “voted” for statehood. The majority of our people do want statehood. We are born American citizens and yet cannot vote for the president. He can send our children to war and we have no say in those issues. Open minded puertoriquens have no problems paying federal taxes. The democratic party in Puerto Rico always (using fear mongering) would use taxes against statehood and yet two years ago implemented a 7 % tax on everything you buy, even services. Is that hypocrisy or what? Take for example what the New York congress woman, Nydia Velazquez said about the the puertoriquen women and how they had more kids in order to get more public funds from government. Wow! Throw our women under the bus just to fight against statehood. Way to go Nydia. You sound just like President Obama when he threw his grandmother under the bus just to make his racial comment. Buy the way, ex-commissioner in Washington from Puerto Rico and later Governor, Anibal Acevedo Vila said the same thing as Nydia Velazquez. He to threw his mother under the bus in a similar speech to congress. Way to go Anibal. What love you have for your women. There might be some women who do have more children for getting more money (take a look at the octomon in the states) but they are a minority. To use that as a reason for rejection so congress can deny Puerto Rico statehood should ring a bell to the press but the media does not have thinkers these days. Where have all those true non-biased people gone to? Anyway, I have to go. the Wife is waiting. By the way she had four of my children. We raised them and educated them. They are hard working citizens and we never got any money from the gov. to feed them, thanks God. The majority of our people work hard and are proud to do so.

      • Luis Arroyo says:

        Lenardo, you are right about the Puerto Rican democrats using stereotypes to fight Statehood. The" popular" Democrat party of Puerto Rico, with the help of Sila Calderon, Hernandez Mayoral,Anibal Acevedo Villa, and other lobbyists, went out to every openly racist Democrat and Republican Congressperson, and showed them videos from the 1950's when the island was a hellhole of poverty. PPD convinced these already ignorant Republican Congressmen that Puerto Rico in 1998 had mules and horses in the streets! PPD also showed videos of violent Mexican 3rd world towns, edited to say it was Puerto Rico. The PPD played to racism as well, claiming islanders were nonwhites with babies on welfare.(Puerto Rico actually has a mediterranean white 80%majority),and like all white populations of late, Puerto Rico birthrate is now below replacement level. In fact, PR lost population in 2010 Census! Birthrate no longer keeping up with natural deaths and outmigration.Mainland "nuyorican"Puerto Ricans tend to be mainly mixed, liberal and anti Statehood. They have many babies, love welfare and are an embarrassment to the rest of us Puerto Ricans. For example,I still find myself explaining to Anglos that Island Ricans are nothing like the Nuyorican savages that sexually assaulted the tourist women in Central Park.

    124. ron and debra postey says:

      We are Canadian and we are happy to see you reporting the truth about what is going on with Puerto Rico – we didn't know until we watched Glenn Beck as no news channels have covered this – even this morning there was nothing on that this bill had passed.

      What makes this even more secretive is what you revealed – that Puerto Ricans in the States can vote for statehood – I am guessing that this has never been allowed before.

      We find it unbelievable what is happening in your country – and are watching closely as you become more and more like us – a socialist country – we are still asleep up here and we definitely do not want you heading in the same direction that our country has gone – one is definitely afraid to say anything that is politically incorrect – so unless your opinion agrees with those in power, you run the risk of being fined (for now).

      Sorry for the rant – just wanted to say THANK YOU for informing the public as to what is really going on in the USA and Puerto Rico. Keep up the good work. d&rp


      As Puerto Rican mainland American(living here 65 years,7 years military of service to this nation);I believe that its time for all Puerto Ricans to make a final choice.Notice,I said all Puerto Ricans,for only they can make the choice.Being well versed in American history,I know of no time in its history where all of the American people where given the choice to vote as to whether or not one of the territories being considered for statehood should should be allowed to become part of the union as a state. In the past,when a vote was taken,they also were given the option of maintaining the current status as a common wealth.Well,you can’t have your cake and eat it to,commonwealth status should not be a option.you either want to be a complete citizen of this nation or you don’t,the time to decide is now. Again it’s a choice that all Puerto Ricans and only Puerto Ricans can make.It’s a choice that will affect all Puerto Ricans,whether they reside on the island or mainland. I’m not surprised by the rhetoric coming out of this this The Heritage Foundation,an utltra right wing conservative organization. I’m referring to some of the negitive and sometimes racist responces your opinions have solicited a from that I cautiously refer to as my fellow americans. One such comment comes to mind from a mister AJ O’Neil ,who describes himself as a Native who would vote against Statehood for Pueto Rico.My question to mister O’Neil;”what Reservation do you live on”?.And just for the record Mr.O’Neil,two thirds of Puerto Ricans have the blood of the natives who greeted Columbus when he set foot in the new world;flowing thru ther veins.Furthermore,you need to get in touch with your roots begfore you go passing yourself off as a native. Well ,Heritage Foundation,I think you get my drift.the word Heritage in your foundation title is a misnomer,for you certainly don’t represent the Heritage of this naion.


    127. Ramsey Caraballo says:

      How many times do we have to hear, “The people of PR rejected the statehood option three times”? Let us talk about the present!! New generations with new opinions and new ambitions!! Stop dragging the past!!!

    128. politicaljules tx says:

      The PR situation is even worse than we know. Just last month the RINO governor of PR declared all their birth certificates as invalid. The citizens now have to reapply for new birth certificates. The fraudulent excuse he gave was that identity theft was rampant. How convienient that he did this right before a vote of the people for statehood would occur. Could it possibly be because they voted it down three times before? Could he possibly be stacking the deck so they can defeat the will of the people by not allowing them to vote? Could it possibly be that he is also opening the door for millions of illegals to now apply for free birth certificates? I think it is possible.

      He is one of the worst RINO’s than we have ever seen here in the states. He supports everything obamacorn is about and is vocal about it. He wants to help obama get a second term, and this is all part of his plan.

      I cannot believe that I am the only one talking about this, but here is the link:

      In March 2010 Puerto Rico declared all their birth certificates invalid!!!!!

      Voter fraud & illegals get free birth certificates. You betcha.


    129. Colony14Author, Mt Prospect, Illinois says:

      If Puerto Rico becomes the 51st state, its resident will have to pay federal income tax. Of course, most of them don’t earn enough to pay income tax.

      More than half the residents of Puerto Rico would immediately become eligible for food stamps if it becomes a state.

      Why stop with Puerto Rico? Heck, make India and Bangladesh the 52nd and 53rd states! They could probably use the food stamps too. And just think of all the new Democrats Obama would have in Congress!

      Read The Obama Timeline to learn how we got into this mess.

    130. MaGioZal, São says:

      Wait a minute.

      All other American states admitted after the independence of the 13 colonies were admitted by the US Congress. So why should only Puerto Rico be submitted to an all-American national referendum as the article suggests?

      And we must remember that the form of eventual accession of Puerto Rico as a state would be similar to the previous accessions of Vermont and Texas to the Union.

      Sometimes it seems like behind the opposition to the Puerto Rican statehood and full congressional voting rights for the residents of Washington DC looms the somehow racist fear into admitting more non-white, non-protestant states and voters to the United States, in the same manner that happened to the arduous process of the accession of the Hawaii in the 40’s and 50’s of the past century.

    131. Rey boricua from Cal says:

      We owe this to all Puertoricans who died in the military defending our nation and the ones proudly and actively serving the Armed Forces.

    132. Sal, Iowa says:

      Mr. Raul Acevedo, I can’t agree more you are so right. It is like Ex president Bush said “With us or Against us” But don’t aggravate yourself with this blog anymore because as you can read many do not even know we are already citizens. But it is not their fault because many Puertoricans do not even know their history, but for those honestly curious visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Puerto_Rico and learn about who we are. In fact it is weird that we are called minorities by many who do not even know their own ancestry and that their etnicity might be british, irish, scottish, french, german, russian, italian, which by the way they do not even get along with each other. A vivid example would be if I were born in Idaho, I am not from the country of Idaho, I am an american. Well so are people born in the commonwealth of Puerto Rico WE ARE AMERICANS ALREADY. But I agree it is time to be a state or go on your own way and become a third world country. With us or not?

    133. Linda California says:

      I've noticed a lot of cries of racism in the comments section on this issue. Are the Puerto Ricans who have preferred the status quo for all these years racist? Against whom?

      My grandmother was ripped from her family and hauled off to a concentration camp when my mom was 4 years old. I never had the opportunity to meet my grandmother. My parents raised my siblings and me to hope the best for everyone regardless of race.

      My father (a hardworking accountant) was transferred to Puerto Rico when I was in high school. I can't believe that I only lived there for two years. It was a beautiful time in my life. I loved the Puerto Rican people and culture. Later, I minored in Spanish in college, studying the cultures and language of many Spanish speaking peoples. My favorite professor was a Mexican woman who is an expert on the Renaissance. She was the most accomplished professor I had, giving lectures and papers around the globe continually. She encouraged me to get my doctorate, but I opted to have a third child at the time. Now I'm a songwriter with two kids in college and one in high school.

      When I studied for my masters degree (M.A. English) I actually chose two non-English texts for my emphases, one Italian and one Spanish. I taught Spanish at the high school level in a largely hispanic area in California. Many of my students were racist against other minorities. I called them on it on many occasions. When they mocked a Vietnamese classmate who had limited English speaking skills, I asked them to recite for the class their best sentence in the Vietnamese language.

      I personally do not know the particulars of the statehood issue, but I LOVE Puerto Rico and remember weeping as the airplane made its circular landing upon my first visit there several years after leaving her. Let the Puerto Ricans decide on their own island's status. If you've made your permanent home in the US, what business is it of yours to determine what the people who live there desire? That's odd to me. But maybe that's just me?

      And a little food for thought . . . I speak fluent Spanish, though no one would EVER guess, based on my appearance. Now, when I lived in Puerto Rico, I made every effort to speak Spanish, even when my ability to speak was somewhat shaky. I believe it to be the height of respect for another culture to do ones best to speak the native language of the country where one visits or resides. What I find more and more in California, is people who obviously know how to speak English, purposely speaking a foreign language in public, assuming that nobody understands them but "their people." I find that to be very disrespectful, and have started to converse with such people (to their shock) in fluent perfectly accented Spanish.

      I will never understand the hatred and contempt being taught in homes and schools to a generation of children who have the privilege of living in this great country. My mother was an immigrant at the age of 17. Her dad died shortly thereafter. After divorcing her 'wayward' husband, she took care of my 7 year old brother and me (4yrs.) by working the night shift at a diner, where she met my future dad. After raising us kids, she followed her childhood dream of becoming a nurse. I think she set a record for speeding through the 'self-paced' nursing program at warp speed with straight As. I never heard her complain once or express disdain for the American people nor country. How fortunate I was to be raised by such hard-working, positive, appreciative and caring parents.

      Thank you Heritage for doing this report on Puerto Rico. Your conservative ideals give me hope for America. Our eldest child is looking forward to her summer internship in your organization.

    134. HECTOR GARCIA says:


      i was born in the island,after graduating from high school(yauco) joined the

      US MARINES (VIETNAM VET) when i got out decided to stay here in the

      states(LOS ANGELES-CALIF) Got married 3 kids and decided to stay

      here for good,went back to visit my dad&mom several times during the

      last 35yrs and enjoy every minute.So my point is that Commonwealth,

      Statehood,Independents,I will allways love my ISLA DEL ENCANTO

      and will keep going back home no matter what.

    135. bigdave ocala fl says:


    136. Ramsey Caraballo says:

      It's all fake anyways!! If they want the Puerto Rican people to decide about their status, only two options should be given, statehood or indepence. Other than that, it's just a political game!!

    137. CJ, Washington State says:

      Do any of you recall that under President Eisenhower, Alaska & Hawaii were given statehood..????

    138. Ramsey Caraballo says:

      I would not dare to make any comments about the people of Oregon or Indiana, NY, Hawai, Texas, Arizona, ect., ect. What do I know?? They are Americans like I am, that I know!!

    139. Ramsey Caraballo says:

      Ignorance is daring! I can’t believe how some people dare to make any comments without knowing the political facts of a country! If you do not know anything about PR and it’s people, please do not make a fool of yourself!!

    140. Eligio Soto Sr. says:

      First, the terms and conditions stated in this plebiscite are for the good and prosperity of dying pearl laying in the Caribbean Sea. Unless we as “AMERICANS” work together to embrace a better future for the next generation, who as we did, will otherwise suffer the same consequences of a political disappointment and lack of values in a government system that simply does not work nor has it work since the honest administration of Mr. Luis Munoz Marin in the early 1950th. I have spent 25 years in the mainland and 20 of those years serving in the military. Although I am considered by some of my family members as an outcast. I fully embrace the idea of Puerto Rico becoming the 51th state of this great nation. As a soldier, it is very hard to put into words my profound loyalty to this nation and the appreciation for the many opportunities this county has given me… A great writer once wrote “My only regret is that, I only have one live to give for my country”. These words are the backbone of the many Puerto Rican men and woman whose life has been given as the ultimate sacrifice to defend the United States and the Colony of Puerto Rico. Very respectfully, Eligio Soto, SFC, US Army (Retired).

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    145. Lou, Orlando, FL says:

      Red State! Puerto Rico will become a Red State, the current governor of PR is a Republican and both chambers of government in PR are controlled by Republicans!

      Puerto Ricans are for the most part Catholic, Pro-Life and Pro Family Values. This is a very interesting fact that most Republicans dont know. But let me tell you the truth if Puerto Rico becomes a state PR will most likely add seats in Congress to the Republican Party. I can assure you that!

    146. Allison Sears says:

      Democracy demands Wisdom. PBS is continually saying: it is so very important of us to have the facts – all of the facts, so that we can make a good decision. That is all well and good, but we are NOT given all of the facts. I accidentally found out about Puerto Rico possibly becoming a state. I didn't hear about it not even once on the TV. Why are we being left out in the dark about so many things? How can we possible stand by our country and our Constiution when we are not told the facts? Puerto Rico has been approached several times to become a state, but has always turned it down. Now I guess the voting was worded in such a way that it was hard for the people to truly distinguish what they were actually voting for. How misleading is that?

      Why is it our government has become: "Oh, by the way, but, we didn't tell you that…….The situation of Puerto Rico is just one more example of "Oh, by the way. Just like the Health Care Bill and the G-20 meeting in Philadelphia.

      (We all need to be concerned whenever there is a G-20 meeting, because such meetings are a threat to our sovereigny, our great Democracy)

      America needs to be well educated so that we know all of the choices that we have, so that we can keep America Strong and KEEP OUR CONSTITUTION STRONG!

      Thank you for allowing me to express myself.

    147. bella boston says:

      texans consider themselves texans first and americans second so what's the dif with puerto ricans doing the same? i have no problem with them deciding to end the forced 19th century imperialism and join the rest of us in the more enlightened 21st century and as equals in the american experiment.

    148. maximillian, Texas says:

      First and foremost, in absence of better words, your argument that the piece of legislation is rigged, is repetitive and to a certain degree, not intending to insult you, but boring. Let's go to the heart of the matter, and it is not if Congress will pass this piece of legislation or not, the House did, will it pass the Senate? That will be a good bet for Las Vegas, or the soon to be new numerous casinos in Puerto Rico.

      Something a lot of my peers are missing, and of course the current party governing the Island takes advantage of, is that Puerto Rican electorate is EXTREMELY vindictive and reactionary. Each 4 years they will vote according to how happy or unhappy they are with the past administration, and that is exploited by the 2 party system (there are 3, but frankly everyone how knows a little bit of Puerto Rican politics knows that the independentistas are less than 5% of the voting population), especially the New Progressive Party that advocates for Statehood. Of course, they will take the results of a general election in Puerto Rico and attempt to present such results to some Congressmen in order to persuade them that Puerto Ricans want statehood, which is far from the truth. Puerto Rican voters switch every 4 years from party lines more often that they can switch ice cream preference. This by no means can be construed as a mandate to change status. Example, last election the electorate voted out a governor that was going through a serious federal investigation and trial, they were just fed up with his particular governing style. Same thing can be concluded in previous elections with the rare exception of Carlos Romero Barceló, who won 2 elections in a row, one of them questionable in 1980; Rafael Hernandez Colon 1984-1992; Pedro Rosello Gonzalez, 1992-2000. If we take for example, the "mandate" that Dr. Rosello Gonzalez won in 1992 and present it to Congress as a vote for statehood it will certainly invalidate and contradict the consults that, under Dr. Rosello's own administration (who had the false impression of having a mandate in such matters) in which Puerto Ricans rejected statehood. They killed their own argument. Now, more than a decade later, history repeats itself with basically the same protagonist, a governor of the New Progressive Party attempting to convert a mandate to FIX primarily the problems of a sour Puerto Rican economy, sky high unemployment, rampant crime, massive government debt, budget deficits and corruption and substitute it for a mandate for statehood, a total delusion on his part and of course on his close advisers as well.

      To add salt to injury, the current Governor has managed to do everything on his hand to upset the people, (not entirely his fault, the man has a budget to balance) but maybe he could have done something better than laying off thousands of government workers during a bad economy in a place where unemployment is always higher than 10%, crime has skyrocketed, and the economy is as bad as it gets, not to mention the budget is still a nightmare. Even some members of his own party have already voiced their concerns that the people is so fed up that he has sabotaged his own chances for re-election. Why? As I said before, Puerto Rican voters are vindictive. It is as simple as that, as much as many 'intellectuals" would like to deny and argue against it, but that is how we vote. The New Progressive Party is given a chance to ADMINISTER the government, not to change the status quo, which a lot of Puerto Ricans, a simple majority enjoy. The best of 2 worlds, as they say, the benefits of citizenship, without the requirement of paying taxes and other perks, like their own language, Olympic representation, etc. In synthesis, Puerto Ricans vote to whoever they think can do a better job than the previous one, regardless of status affiliation, and as I said unfortunately politicians try to manipulate local election results in an attempt to fulfill their agenda, no more no less.

      Now, let’s discuss the obvious, is the United States, under the current recession and economic downturn, is this the right time to add another state? Don't we already have enough problems that, (no offense intended to my peers in Puerto Rico) have a HIGHER priority than integrate another state that will certainly add an additional burden to an already strained American tax payer? You don't need to be a Harvard grad to figure the answer out. Plus, it takes the will of the Senate to address it and in the middle of a mid-term election when many incumbents face imminent annihilation by their already frustrated voters, and obviously they are running to grab their parachutes, does anyone honestly believe they are in the mood of attending this status issue?

      A valuable lesson I have learned, Congress (both House and Senate) have had since 1898 to figure out what they want to do with Puerto Rico. If they REALLY wanted to change it, they would have done so already. What does this translate into? That in reality, (as much as what I am going to say bothers those who advocate for statehood for Puerto Rico) they do not mind the status quo, it does not bother them, in other words, they assume that if it is not broken, why fix it? Last but not least, after the next mid-term election, will they be willing to incorporate the Island as a state with so many challenges ahead of us? Chances are I will bet no, it is not going to happen. But, as my father always says, you don't loose anything by asking, correct?

      One day, 19 years ago, I woke up and smelled the coffee I explained to you all, and ended up moving to Texas. Because I knew statehood for Puerto Rico is a pipe dream that reality and the dynamics of economics and politics are stacked against up. We live and learn.

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    152. TLM New York, New Yo says:

      I say no statehood. I feel the governor should manage the island to the best of his abilities keeping focus on illegal immigration along with drug and weapons trafficking that occurs via the west side of the island, specifically via the Mona passage.

      If social and economic equality is what they suggest will be gained from a union I'd reckon the governor focus on educational and healthcare initiatives along with the afore mentioned issues, which, for the most part are already heavily funded by the United States in any case.

      I think it's naive to think that statehood would be the simplest way to address any shortcomings the island might have. In fact, tying the island up with bureaucratic red tape that is synonymous with continental US politics is quite frankly the wrong move.

      Puerto Rico’s governor should simply manage his constituents and represent their interests before congress and not the interests of big business and real estate developers; those entities which he is all too well acquainted with. While it’s good publicity to convene and have photo ops with US state representatives Fortuno needs to understand the island and the mainland are two equal but separate things. He must have confidence in the fact that he already occupies the highest "statutory" title so so much for his ambitions. We don't do “President” of the state in America. Nice try.

      Que viva un Puerto Rico libre pero con fronteras protegidas por los Estados Unidos.

    153. Juan Perez, San Juan says:

      The greatest obstacle that statehoold for Puerto Rico has is called the NEW PROGRESSIVE PARTY (PNP). For the first time in the electoral history of Puerto Rico a statehood party controls the three branches of government. Fortuno's victory was the largest that any statehood party has had. The NNP does not need that U.S. Congress dictates the kind of plebiscite that we want. Fortuno could order a Statehood vs. Independence plebiscite right now. They don't do it because they like the status quo as much as the Populares do. They are milking the cow that is called ELA. Fortuno and the NNP are worse than the Populares. Statehood vs Independence plebiscite, NOW!

    154. Ivelisse, Florida says:

      It is not about becoming a state…it is called having your pride taken away from you so that others that have nothing to do with you, come in and do whatever they want. This is what Puerto Ricans that are/were born, raised and still live there believe. The pride of the culture will deminish as soon as the "mainland" gets their hands on it, this is from the perspective of the natives. Of course, those that have lived in the mainland all their life would rather have this precious island become a state, so they can have full benefits, yet in the eyes of those that live there, becoming a "sellout" is not an option. Let those that reside there come to the conclusion to what the island wants.

    155. joey aguadilla puert says:

      i live in puerto rico, but i can not vote for the president?.we do not need your food stamps. we do not need your social programs. as most puerto ricans i would vote YES for statehood.we are americans and will demand to be seated. yea i know we voted three times for this but things here are changing.the day of old time jibaros are gone.politically we are niether gop nor dnc. i dont see either party getting a advantage of us becoming a state.we have no problems paying taxes.its our choice not yours.remember tennessee?.it all boils down to this ,we as americans can demand to be seated .pr51 get used to it . its going to happen fortuno promised us this "and thats why we elected him".unless of course some of you just frankly dont like hispanics. plausable and probable.its simply a matter of taxation without representation.we are not second class people.we are a proud american people. whats your gripe?

    156. joey aguadilla puert says:


    157. Jose M. Lopez Sierra says:

      Dear Friend:

      My name is José López from Bayamón, Puerto Rico. I am contacting you to see if you could help.

      The United Nations' (UN) Decolonization Committee is in its third decade of trying to eradicate colonialism in the world. In that effort, it holds a hearing every year around June (the month New York City holds its Puerto Rican Day Parade) to discuss Puerto Rico's colonial situation.

      It would be helpful if in next year's discussion there could be a full house in the hearing room with people interested in the decolonization of Puerto Rico. This hearing is not well publicized since some people would like to maintain the status quo forever.

      Could your organization spread the word out to your people so that those interested in attending the June 2012 hearing could do so? The exact date has not yet been determined by the UN.

      Thank you for your time in this matter!


      José M. López Sierra

      United Partners for the Decolonization of Puerto Rico 2012 http://todosunidosdescolonizarpr.blogspot.com/?v=

    158. Ruben a puerto rican says:

      no no no we cant afford it the US is in too much debt right now to pay out more welfare are we crazy keep it like it is or the US will go broke.

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