Residents of Puerto Rico cannot vote in presidential elections. In the United States, presidential races aren’t decided by the popular vote. Instead, each state close electors to represent the entire state. They meet in the Electoral College and cast votes for their state, generally choosing the candidate who got the most votes in the state. More than once, the winner of the most electoral votes has not been the winner of the most votes cast by individuals.

Presidential primaries, however, are based on the popular vote. Puerto Rico holds primaries in presidential races. The next one will be in March, 2024, when the Island will hold a Republican primary and then a Democratic primary.

How does the primary work?

Puerto Rico has open primaries, so everyone can choose to vote in either the Republican or the Democratic primary. The Democratic Party, however, requires that any voter in their primary must declare him or herself a Democrat.

The Republican and Democratic parties are not the most important political parties in Puerto Rico. The important parties in Puerto Rico are The New Progressive Party, which supports statehood; the Popular Democratic Party, supporting “commonwealth”; and the Puerto Rican Independence Party, which naturally wants independence.

In Puerto Rico’s Republican primary, candidates must gain 20% of the vote to gain any representatives. The threshold for the Democratic Party is 15%. If one Republican candidate gets 50%, the race is “winner take all,” with the winning candidate getting the votes of all the delegates to the party conventions. If no candidate gets that majority, delegates are shared out among those who took the required minimum percentage of votes. This “proportional” system is used for the Democratic Party,m with no “winner take all” option.

How important are the primaries in Puerto Rico?

At the primaries, voters choose among the candidates for their own political parties — or, in this case, for the Democratic and Republican parties, even if those are not the voters’ strongest party affiliations.

The Republican Party of Puerto Rico fields 23 delegates for the convention, giving it more influence over the Republican nominee than smaller states like New Hampshire, Delaware, and Maine.

The Democratic Party of Puerto Rico has 56 delegates. That’s more than 21 of the states  and Washington D.C., and an equal number to Louisiana.

This means that Puerto Rico’s primary votes are quite important in selecting the eventual candidates for the presidency. They may be particularly important in the upcoming cycle, since both parties have been focusing on the Hispanic vote. With a mostly Hispanic population, Puerto Rico could be an important bellwether for the national parties.

270 toWin is currently showing that Trump and Biden have comfortable margins to win in their respective primaries. However, it is early days for the presidential campaign. Candidates are not yet visiting Puerto Rico. When they do, they should expect that the Island’s status will be the biggest question on voters’ minds.



One response

    Based, on facts (clearly seen on videos)—Trump (with a Republican Congress)- have done some good things, as Trump has been under some unfair political/ legal attacks… BUT, TRUMP-is egotistical; has been very divisive/ troublesome; has discriminated against Hispanics-Puerto Ricans (see below facts); has a long track Record of being a loud mouth bully & dictatorial; a fraud; has disparaged many good People (including the Pope; praised Dictators like Putin & others); denigrated Allies/ NATO, etc.)!

    Plus, over 20 of Trump’s former Top appointees have said he is autocratic; a menace to our democracy; has bad mouthed American Veterans/ the wounded, and many other honorable People! TRUMP Top Officials have said that TRUMP is unfit to be President, and other bad things (see videos of his Vice-President, a Chief of Staff (4 Star General), a Secretary of Defense, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff –who Trump called a Traitor, a National Security Advisor, an Attorney General, and many others!

    Besides, TRUMP doesn’t support Federal “consent of the governed” for all “WE THE PEOPLE”-Puerto Ricans! Facts are: Since 1898 (for over 125+ years), fellow US Citizens-US Veterans in the US Territory of Puerto Rico (with more US Citizens than 22 States) have NO Vote for US President; NO just Representation in the US Congress; NO Parity in Federal Laws, Programs or Funding; no permanent statutory US Citizenship (even if residing in a State), etc; are under the plenary powers of the US Congress as the US Constitution doesn’t fully apply because of the racist Insular Cases!
    If there is NO Federal Vote; there is NO Democracy which is against our founding principles!
    While other US President’s like Teddy Roosevelt (R), Reagan (R), Ford (R), G. Bush (R), Clinton (D), Obama (D), W. Bush (R), and Biden (D) have supported equal US Citizenship-Rights; an end to Puerto Rico’s Territorial/ Colonial Status…But, TRUMP/his Administration (without Honor), have by his factual actions below —has wrongly stereotyped, generalized, blamed the victim, marginalized, harmed, and discriminated against Hispanics-Puerto Ricans, as follows: (ON TAPE)
    • TRUMP tweeted in August 2019: “Puerto Rico is one of the most corrupt places on earth.” When corruption is an individual act; not a Group crime! In our Justice System all accused have due process; a fair trial!
    • Slashed or has taken away NEEDED Government funds, to construct the Wall form: MEDICAID, HUD (Housing), Military and family construction preparedness funds (includes $380m form PR National Guard); and other Federal Funds that FAIRLY correspond or are owed to Puerto Ricans.
    • Not treated PR equally or provided funds that other US Citizens-American Veterans receive.
    • Not treated Puerto Ricans EQUALLY during devastating Earthquakes (6.4; over 2,000 tremors); says that Puerto Rico has received enough corresponding Federal Funds when this is not true! (JAN 2020); (Trump remained publicly silent about the emergency, even though he often publicly comments on natural disasters.)
    • Signaled he was going to Veto a House bill that would provide more than $4.7 billion for education, transportation, infrastructure repairs, and disaster relief measures.
    • During the Pandemic, only mentions the States, never the US Territory of Puerto Rico that has MORE US Citizens-American Veterans than 22 States! THE LIST GOES ON!
    • The Trump administration imposed severe restrictions on billions of dollars in emergency relief to Puerto Rico that were not imposed to any State or other US Citizens-US Veterans.
    • On January 31, 2018, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced that it would stop distributing essential aid in Puerto Rico, reversing its decision only after widespread criticism.
    • In September 2018, President Trump falsely suggested that his political opponents artificially inflated the Hurricane María death toll “in order to make me look as bad as possible.”
    • In October 2018, President Trump falsely accused Puerto Rican politicians of using disaster relief funding to pay off the island’s debt.
    • In April 2019, the president falsely complained that Puerto Rico received “far more money than Texas & Florida combined” for disaster relief.
    • Under the Trump administration, FEMA awarded a $156 million contract for the distribution of 30 million meals for the island following Hurricane María; however, only 50,000 meals were delivered.
    • Trump falsely claimed that “Congress had approved 92 Billion Dollars for Puerto Rico,” when, in reality, Congress has so far appropriated only about $44 billion for Puerto Rico hurricane relief and reconstruction.
    • The Trump administration contributed to an estimated 2,975 deaths after Hurricane María because of its slow response and failure to provide Puerto Rico with adequate resources or properly trained emergency personnel to match the severity of the situation on the ground.
    • In a statement issued by the Office of Management and Budget, the Trump administration wrongfully claimed that $600 million in additional disaster Nutritional Assistance Program funding that Congress allocated for Puerto Rico in fiscal year 2019 was “excessive” and “unnecessary.” After pressure from advocates, the administration relented—but only after months of delays for disaster bills that affected multiple U.S. states and Puerto Rico. The delay caused temporary cuts to more than 670,000 hunger-vulnerable beneficiaries.
    • In December 2019, President Trump personally intervened in budget talks to cut Medicaid funding to Puerto Rico by half.
    • In February 2020, President Donald Trump threatened to veto a $4.7 billion emergency aid package intended to help Puerto Rico recover from a series of damaging earthquakes.
    • Thus far in 2020, President Trump has proposed cutting the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Superfund budget by more than $100 million. These cuts would adversely affect Puerto Rico, which currently has 25 Superfund sites that were affected by flooding and other damages in the wake of Hurricane María.
    • Despite the decrease of mercury emissions by nearly 11 percent from 2011 to 2017, the Trump administration has weakened limits on the amount of mercury and other toxic emissions that are allowed from power plants. The move will exacerbate existing pollution and clean air issues for Puerto Rico as the island recovers from natural disasters.
    • The Trump administration is attempting to eliminate the “cumulative impact” requirement of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). This would directly affect Puerto Rico’s economy, which heavily relies on agriculture and tourism. These two sectors are heavily dependent on climate and weather conditions.
    FIX: Take Civic Action for Equal Civil Rights; get our Federal Government to do a Plebiscite with viable Non-Territorial Options; let the people VOTE on: STATEHOOD vs INDEPENDENCE (Without or With a Free Association Pact). The best option is: PR Equality & Progress with STATEHOOD!

    Plus, among many bad things, he has incited a Riot in our US Capitol Building; unjustly turned on his good/loyal Vice President (when under danger); is undermining our Justice system (as he has been convicted for civil sexual assault and fraud; has pending other charges in duly constituted Courts of Law; is a threat to our Democratic system (without proof, he undermines the elections), etc. as RINO Trump (who is a TRUMPIST-for himself first,)-is divisive; is destroying the Lincoln-Reagan Republican Party!

    In the end, this is a question of Honor! RINO TRUMP (who is pompous, divisive, and disgraceful) is a clear and present danger to the truth; a menace to good reason as Trump undermines a just Representative Democracy; our Justice system! TRUMP doesn’t represent the highest values and precepts of the GOP or Office of the US Presidency! The Republican Party needs to get a new Presidential Candidate that unites or be prepared to lose the elections! OUT WITH TRUMP, now! God bless our noble USA!
    UNITED-with Truth, Reason, Justice, and Civic Action for the Good of All!
    • Our US (a Union of Sovereign States) is the best in the World—where each State complements each other; is stronger than by itself …! UNITED, under US Constitution, brings more Progress–for the Good of All! “En la UNIÓN está la Fuerza!”
    • In 1973-Trump and his Father (Fred)– were both fined, by the Federal Government, because they discriminated against Blacks and Hispanic who were not allowed in a Trump Housing project…

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