Misconceptions about Puerto Rico and Statehood: Puerto Rico Would Be a Blue State

From The Huffington Post to The Economist, journalists have said that Puerto Rico can’t become the 51st state because Republicans won’t allow another blue state to join the Union.

The assumption is that Puerto Rico, once statehood is achieved, will vote Democratic.

In fact, it is impossible to predict how Puerto Rico will vote. Here’s why:

  • Parties in Puerto Rico are different from those on the mainland. They center on the question of status. Rather than voting Democratic because their parents did, Puerto Ricans will choose the candidate who best represents their views.
  • Puerto Ricans are typically more socially conservative than the Democratic party on the mainland. We saw this in the recent survey of Puerto Rican voters in Florida and in the decision by a federal judge in Puerto Rico to uphold the ban on gay marriage.
  • Predictions about how territories will vote have historically been inaccurate. For example, it was widely believed that Hawaii would be a red state and Alaska a blue one. It is in fact the other way around.
  • States change their minds, too. The Southern Dixiecrats were actually a different political party from the Democrats, but the South was so heavily Democratic at one time that this was forgotten. Now, Southern states tend to vote Republican.
  • The idea that Puerto Rico would vote Democrat is in part based on voting patterns among mainland Hispanic voters. However, the majority of current U.S. Latino voters have Mexican roots, not Puerto Rican. Deciding that Puerto Ricans would follow the pattern of Mexican Americans is a lot like deciding that the French would be in political sync with Hatians. They might… or they might not.

Which party will get the votes of Puerto Rico’s voters will depend on which party is best able to show that they are prepared to support Puerto Rico’s right to self-determination and full citizenship. Right now, both major political parties say they support this in their platforms.

It shouldn’t matter. Neither party has a monopoly on civil rights. Self-determination for Puerto Rico is a bipartisan issue. Let your legislators know that this issue is important to you — whichever party they represent, and whichever party you support.

 

This post was originally written in English and may be being auto-translated by Google.

14 Comments

Eric Pijuan

I was born in PR as were many of my ancestors. Of my ancestors (Puerto Rican/Spaniards) my Grandfather was in the US military and fought bravely in WWII, Korea & Vietnam. My great grandfather was in the US military as well serving a total of 20 years (my grandpa 21 yrs). My great uncles fought in Vietnam with the airborne. All of my mothers cousins are currently in the AirForce and Army. My grandmother was a WAC. All these people born, raised in Puerto Rico and some died there or in a distant battlefield. Many of them died not knowing what would happen to PR or its status, but all knew that as no man/women is left behind soo America no leave its last true friend/family in the dust. They gave there full measure for this and we will obtain that which they valiently fought to the end. My grandpa was in Incheon protecting the retreat of the Marines, and he always said that they had there backs the US will have ours. VIVA LA ESTADIDAD!! EL GRITO DEL CANON ESTADISTA LLEGO!!

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Eric Pijuan

I was born in PR as were many of my ancestors. Of my ancestors (Puerto Rican/Spaniards) my Grandfather was in the US military and fought bravely in WWII, Korea & Vietnam. My great grandfather was in the US military as well serving a total of 20 years (my grandpa 21 yrs). My great uncles fought in Vietnam with the airborne. All of my mothers cousins are currently in the AirForce and Army. My grandmother was a WAC. All these people (Americans) born, raised in Puerto Rico died there or in some distant battlefield fighting for there country not PR but the whole PR, USA. Many of them died not knowing what would happen to PR or its status, but all knew that as no man/women is left behind soo America will not leave its last true friend/family in the dust. They gave there full measure for this, and we will obtain that which they valiently fought to the end for. My grandpa was in Chosin Reservoir protecting the retreat of the Marines, and he always said that they had there backs the US will have ours. VIVA LA ESTADIDAD!! EL GRITO DEL CANON ESTADISTA LLEGO!!

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El Libertador

Telling us about the history of your ancestors in the armed forces is irrelevant. They were all Puerto Ricans, and Puerto Ricans only. Wouldn’t it better, those great fighters fighting for your homeland, Puerto Rico? Wouldn’t it better to have your Puerto Rican citizenship, staying a Puerto Rican for the rest of your life? ¡Viva Puerto Rico Libre!

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John Medina

the history of his ancestors are in fact not irrelevant, this shows that Puerto Rican’s have fought to make America what is today. So your reply stating wouldn’t it be better just to state your a Puerto Rican citizen would mean your giving up all those years and ancestors fighting for there mainland United States. So it is in fact very important that he states his ancestors

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Leonardo

It IS Relevant! In my family there were many enlisted men and they fought for our nation gallantly, valiantly and risked their lives for Democracy, for what we, US citizens believe. Texans will be Texans forever. Hawaiian will be Hawaiians forever, Puerto Ricans will be Puerto Ricans forever…What are you talking about?
Leonardo

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Me

Great. By do you think they would vote blue or red? That’s what I want to know.

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Bob Redman

“Puerto Ricans are typically more socially conservative than the Democratic party on the mainland. ”

Mexicans are also typically socially conservative. Nevertheless, when they vote in the US, most of them vote democrat.

“Which party will get the votes of Puerto Rico’s voters will depend on which party is best able to show that they are prepared to support Puerto Rico’s right to self-determination”

It will depend on which party is willing to assume Puerto Rico’s debt. It is unlikely that the republicans will be willing to do so.

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John Medina

this can not be for told we don’t know what they will vote. Republicans are very supportive of Puerto Rico so your comment is a little inaccurate

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Rey Guajatacatacash

I’m not going to read other’s opinions because they will always have a self defense mechanism to rationalize their political ideologies, same as touching the subject on which is the best religion, where in actuality, there is no right one. The people in the government of the Commonwaelth Of PR are doing their best to see how every structure and network has the best outcome for the people of PR, regardless of being a fanatic to a particular political party. We can only cast our votes, let’s not try to brainwash others. Thank you, bless you all. ^_^

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Puerto Rico, State hood - Page 4

[…] looking it up, while I admit, I have not done intense research, what I did find is "we don't know"? Misconceptions about Puerto Rico and Statehood: Puerto Rico Would Be a Blue State – Puerto Rico 51st We weren't that far from hailing Queen Hillary a few months ago, who things had been different had […]

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Pamela B.

After Trump’s disgusting treatment of Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria I would think they would be more inclined now to vote democratic!

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