Presidential Candidates and Puerto Rico Statehood

According to Ballotpedia, 520 people have filed so far to run for president in 2020. Here is a list of candidates who are currently campaigning or seriously considering doing so:

  1. Donald Trump
  2. Kamala D. Harris
  3. Joe Biden
  4. Elizabeth Warren
  5. Sherrod Brown
  6. Beto O’Rourke
  7. Tulsi Gabbard
  8. Bernie Sanders
  9. Amy Klobuchar
  10. Cory Booker
  11. Kirsten Gillibrand
  12. Michael Bloomberg
  13. John Delaney
  14. John Hickenlooper
  15. Julián Castro
  16. Pete Buttigieg
  17. Marianne Williamson
  18. Andrew Yang
  19. Howard Schultz

We will update this list as the campaign season continues. Some of these individuals, such as Joe Biden and Howard Schultz, have not yet declared or filed for the race. They are, however, showing up in news reports. There may be others who are not on this list, but who will gain traction as time goes on.

Which candidates support statehood for Puerto Rico?

At present, just three of the people on this list have spoken clearly for Puerto Rico statehood: John Delaney, Tulsi Gabbard, and Andrew Yang.

A businessman, Andrew Yang has a statement at his campaign site:

Puerto Rico has been a part of the United States for over a century, and yet its people are still denied many of the rights of full citizens because it is a commonwealth of the US instead of a full state. Puerto Ricans overwhelmingly want to be a state, and we should endorse this and make it happen.


Puerto Rico should be a state – they function as one right now without the political rights and bankruptcy protection. If Puerto Ricans looked like Swedes they’d be a state already. We must not only offer them political equality but help them rebuild their economy and infrastructure – it will take time but that’s what Americans do.
— Andrew

Under “problems to be solved,” Yang says, “Puerto Rico has been a part of the US for over a century but has never been granted the full rights of statehood.” He clearly states his intention to work toward statehood as part of his commitment to equity.

John Delaney, a former Congressman, is openly supporting statehood for both Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. However, his campaign website does not include any statement on Puerto Rico. Delaney is reported to be planning to visit Puerto Rico soon.

Tulsi Gabbard has not made any statements about Puerto Rico statehood, but she was a cosponsor for HR 727, the Puerto Rico Statehood Admission Process Act of 2015.

Pete Buttigieg may also favor Puerto Rico statehood. He is reportedly planning to visit Puerto Rico and there is at least one news report claiming that he supports statehood.

We will continue to update this information as we receive news. Please ask the candidates you follow whether they support statehood or not, and let us know when they answer. Also please let us know if you have other people who should be on the list of serious candidates. We want to maintain the most accurate information possible and we appreciate your help.

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