• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • VIDEO: Gov. Luis Fortuño Predicts Puerto Rico Will Become 51st State

    Puerto Rico has long flirted with the idea of becoming the 51st state. This year voters will once again have their choice at the ballot box. And for Gov. Luis Fortuño, the time is right.

    Fortuño visited the nation’s capital last week for a meeting at the White House on increased drug trafficking through the Caribbean. It’s one of many challenges facing Puerto Rico.

    When he took office in 2009, Fortuño inherited a poor economy and high unemployment. He has instituted reforms to balance the budget and reduce the overall tax burden. The Wall Street Journal recently featured his plans to switch electricity generation from oil to natural gas.

    During his visit to Heritage, we spoke to Fortuño about Puerto Rican statehood, his relationship with Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez, drug trafficking, budget reforms and why Hispanics should find conservatism appealing.

    The interview runs about 4 minutes. Hosted by Rob Bluey and produced by Brandon Stewart. For more videos from Heritage, subscribe to our YouTube channel.

    Posted in Featured, Scribe [slideshow_deploy]

    12 Responses to VIDEO: Gov. Luis Fortuño Predicts Puerto Rico Will Become 51st State

    1. Jose Figueroa says:

      Puerto Rico the 51st state? It will never happen. If the U.S. wanted to make that happen it would have happened many years ago. That's one thing both Republicans and Democrats agree on. They would like to perpetuate the colonial status of the island. Local politicians have been selling that dream for more than 60 years. The governor is the latest seller of lies. The U.S. is very interested in keeping those 4M American citizens in the island as 2nd class citizens with no representation in their destiny.

      • priscilla villalongo says:

        you should not think negativley about puerto rico becoming a state. these things take time it wont happen just in one day.

    2. West Texan says:

      The way various U.S. congresses and administrations have purposely ignored and subverted federalism, I'm not so sure Puerto Rico would fare any better than Texas did when it joined the union. Patriotic Texans are trapped by overreaching big government socialist wannabes. Governor Fortuno best heed the Lost in Space robot, "Warning! Warning! ….". Statehood is not all it's cracked up to be. Beginning with the 20th century, things have steadily gotten worse regarding limited government.

    3. juliorvarela says:

      Do you guys post actual real facts about Puerto Rico or just Luis Fortuño public relations campaigns? http://juliorvarela.com/2012/02/14/latest-poll-on

      Just wondering.

      Facts would be nice as well once in a while. Thanks!

    4. Hector Ramos Andujar says:

      After many years of territory is about time that Puerto Rico become no 51 State of the union. The 4m
      americans citizens do not deserve to live in the present colonial status with no representation in
      congress and participation in general elections to elect the president of the US.

    5. chuck says:

      We all should oppose making Puerto Rico the 51st state. Why should we add 2 additional senators for less population than live in the Dallas Fort Worth metroplex. We would simply be diluting our representation and if that is not good enough how about the welfare we would add to the already overburdened tax system. If that happens then i think Texas should exercise our option to divide into 4 additional states and have 10 senators representing the population of Texas instead of the 2 we now have.

      • TXBORICUA says:

        Chuck, do you understand why each state has two senators regardless of the size? Representation has nothing to do with senators..check out something called the U.S. Constitution and the The Federalist Papers No. 62.

        Texas has two senators like any state which have less people living in them like, hmmm, let me see..Montana or Rhode Island. Does that not prove your point and yet you do not call for their removal from the union? If you want to debate on something, get your facts, if you do have any to use against the continued denial of 4 million AMERICAN citizens the choice to be first class citizens.

      • John says:

        So you think we should revoke the statehood of all states that have population fewer than the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex? That's 33 states you were talking about.

      • boricua77 says:

        Hey u chuck Puerto Rico is same or most bigger than a state. Yes, that Rhode Island state is less than the island so what we are 4m of citizen so next time show more respect

    6. AU76 says:

      Bueno! Gov. Fortuno is correct. Puerto Rico has had all the benefits of being U.S. citzizens (including the welfare system in reply to Chuck's response) and they have contributed many citizens and ideas to the mainland. I wish them well as they go to the polls and vote. Of course, if our current president is re-elected and they vote to become a state they better "buckle up buttercups" because higher federal taxes are on their way!

    7. Capital Z says:

      Ruth Bader Ginsburg would probably advise them to adopt a copy of Denmark's constitution

    8. Luis says:

      As someone who lives in Puerto Rico, I can say that there are many inaccuracies, if not downright lies, in that interview. For starters, Fortuño has not exactly reduced the size of government. He has fired and encouraged a lot of people to retire, but that's not the same as reducing government. If anything, government is actually getting a little bigger. There is the project to make a tram in San Juan which will require the creation of a new entity to administrate it and there is a bill in the works to create another entity similar to Venezuela's El Sistema, which will create dozens of youth orchestras and choruses whose teachers will be paid by the government. And all those job positions that suddenly became empty? They had to hire thousands of people in order to fill them again because it turns out that they were actually needed.

      Second, taxes have not been lowered for the average citizen. Most people don't really benefit from the new tax policies that have been passed recently. And they haven't sparked job creation in the private sector, either.

      And finally, yes, Puerto Rico has had large numbers of its people working in the U.S. military. Probably in disproportion to its size, in fact. But the reason for this is not because of any deep-seated patriotic feeling for the U.S., in most cases. Most of the people that I know that have joined the military have done so in order to be able to afford graduate studies later because one that's one of the benefits of joining: the military pays a substantially large part of the cost, if not the whole thing.

      So this is a gross misrepresentation of Puerto Rico's situation. And can someone please explain what on earth is a "natural conservative", as if being either conservative of liberal were some kind of biological condition instead of something learned?

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.

    ×