97 Days After Hurricane María, Puerto Rico Governor Calls for ’51st State of the Nation’ Commitment

Dec 27, 2017
4:30 PM

Puerto Rico governor Ricardo Rosselló meets with members of his Statehood Commission on December 27, 2017 in San Juan. (Photo provided by La Fortaleza)

On the 97th day since Hurricane María struck Puerto Rico in September, governor Ricardo Rosselló and his administration shared the following media release earlier on Wednesday, saying that they will go on the “offensive” and demand that Puerto Rico become the 51st state of the Union.

(December 27, 2017 – La Fortaleza) The governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rosselló, held a meeting at La Fortaleza with members of the Puerto Rico Statehood Commission, which defined the offensive that the group will undertake in Washington at the start of the new year.

“The purpose and the commitment of the Commission consist of claiming equal rights through statehood for our Island. The time to start this offensive has arrived and we will proceed on various fronts and political scenarios,” the members of the organization indicated in a joint statement.

The representatives of the congressional delegation from Puerto Rico will present their credentials before the legislative chambers of the United States Congress during the second week of January.

The members announced that they support the governor’s call to participate in the midterm elections in the United States in support of candidates who commit to statehood for Puerto Rico.

The Puerto Rico Statehood Commission—announced through a mandate of Act 30 of 2017—is composed of former governors Pedro Rosselló, Carlos Romero, and Luis Fortuño; the president of the Democratic Party in Puerto Rico, Charlie Rodríguez; the national committeewoman of the Republican Party, Zoraida Fonalledas; the Baseball Hall of Fame member, Iván Rodríguez; and retired major general Felix Santoni.

The agenda in Washington of the Puerto Rico Statehood Commission for the month of January will be informed over the next few days.

“I appreciate the commitment that was reaffirmed today by the members of the Puerto Rico Statehood Commission to promote in Washington the full recognition of the civil and political rights that belong to the American citizens of Puerto Rico,” said Rosselló.

The governor concluded by stating that “we are going to demand the solution to the problems that affect the quality of life of our people, through the admission of Puerto Rico as the 51st state of the Nation. That is our commitment.”

This happened hours before Florida Senator Bill Nelson and Florida Representative Darren Soto held a press conference with Rosselló, who kept pushing his equality message. But Nelson and Soto didn’t really want to talk about statehood. And they are both Democrats.

The statehood issue was complicated one BEFORE María hit the island, and it is very likely going to be even more complicated after.