Puerto Rican Statehood

One Year Since Hurricane Maria In Puerto Rico: A Total National Tragedy, And Time For Puerto Rican Statehood

It has been one tragic year since Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico, and its floods, winds, and the aftermath of very limited recovery efforts by the Trump Administration led to almost 3,000 deaths, making Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, Louisiana, with its 1,800 deaths look minor by comparison.

The main job of government is to protect its population, not just from foreign foes and invasion, but also from natural disasters, and the Republican Party has set a horrible record of lack of concern and ineptness in dealing with natural disasters.

Witness Hurricane Andrew in 1992 in Florida under President George H. W. Bush; Hurricane Katrina in 2005 in Louisiana under President George W. Bush; and now Hurricane Maria in 2017 in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands under President Donald Trump.

Trump’s lack of concern is worst than the disasters under the two Bushes, and his racism is totally apparent, and the gall of him to throw paper towels on a brief visit a few weeks after the disaster shows just how despicable he is as a human being.

It is time for Puerto Rico, which is still treated as a colony, to apply for statehood, and in June of 2017 the island voted for statehood overwhelmingly, but a small percentage voted, but it should move forward expeditiously, and become the 51st state.

There is a statehood bill, that would make Puerto Rico a state by January 1, 2021, 19 days before the next Presidential inauguration.

Of course, the Republicans, if they keep control, will not wish to do so, as Puerto Rico would certainly be a Democratic state, and likely have two Democratic Senators and a few Democratic Congressmen, but it is the right thing to do, and soon.

Puerto Rico Statehood Around The Corner–Or Is It?

For the first time since 1959, the United States is likely very soon to have another state added to the Union–Puerto Rico–or is it?

Puerto Rico has had special commonwealth status since 1952,and had rejected statehood by narrow margins a few times over the years, but on Election,Day, the voters chose to ask for statehood, which should be automatic next year under ordinary circumstances.

This would require a new 51 star flag; the addition of probably five House members; and two US Senators, based on the fact that the island has about 3.7 million population, and each Congressional district is about 750,000 population, making for a 440 member House of Representatives.

It probably means that both Senators and most of the five House members will be Democrats, at least initially, but also based on the overwhelming Puerto Rican vote for President Obama in New York, Florida, Illinois, and elsewhere, where Puerto Ricans have settled.

Puerto Rico would be the second island nation after Hawaii, which would not be part of the American mainland, and by its population size, would have greater input than Hawaii, with its two House members, and Alaska, with its one state wide Congressman.

The plebiscite vote was non binding, and came with the unusual defeat of the statehood Governor and loss of control of both houses for his party, and the victory of the pro Commonwealth party, which wishes to leave Puerto Rican status as it has been for the past half century.

So because of the contradictory results, it could be that Congress will ignore the results and leave things well enough alone!