Does Joe Biden Support Statehood for Puerto Rico?

Joe Biden has declared as a 2020 presidential candidate, and he shows up well in recent polls.

So does Biden support statehood for Puerto Rico?

Joe Biden said in 2012 that Puerto Rico needed to “fight hard for statehood.” This was in answer to a question from an intern. The Orlando Sentinel reported the exchange.

“Mr. Vice President, as opposed to my fellow intern colleagues present here today, I will not be able to vote for you in four months …. You see, Mr. Vice President, I am Puerto Rican; and despite Puerto Ricans possessing American citizenship by birth, and thousands of brave Puerto Rican soldiers like my father having served and even died for our nation, many dying as we speak, we are denied equal voting and representation rights under the American flag,” the intern began. “Mr. Vice President, do you think we are contradicting ourselves as a nation when we preach freedom and democracy abroad in countries within the Middle East, and yet, to this very day, we maintain 3.7 million American citizens on the island of Puerto Rico under a disenfranchised political status, where they are denied the most basic fundamental rights enshrined in our U.S. Constitution?”

“I must say, that is a very good question,” said Biden, who was Vice President of the United States at the time. “I have always found Puerto Rico’s current political status as something very bizarre. My word of advice to you, and all Puerto Ricans, is that you continue to fight hard until you reach your goal of equality, and we shall act.”

Is this a clear statement supporting statehood? Biden encouraged Puerto Ricans to “continue to fight hard” until the “goal of equality” is reached. At that point, Biden said, “We shall act.”

Was “we” in that case the White House? Congress actually makes the decision whether or not to admit a new state. Perhaps “we” meant the federal government as a whole.

Biden was Vice President when Puerto Rico voted for statehood in 2012. The White House at that time said that the 2012 vote was “a clear result.” He probably does support statehood.

But we want to see a clear statement, from Biden and all the other candidates, giving their position on Puerto Rico statehood. Click the tweet below to ask for a clear answer from Joe Biden.

@JoeBiden do you support statehood for Puerto Rico? Click To Tweet

One Comment

Angelo

Biden may very well be Puerto Rico’s savior. He will win in 2020 and democrats will retain congress, the senate will stay republican but there are enough republican senators to align with the democrats voting for PR statehood. Biden will sign Puerto Rico’s State declaration by 2024.

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