Rep. Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon, the Resident Commissioner for Puerto Rico, told El Nuevo Dia that Congress is “evading its responsibility” on the issue of statehood for Puerto Rico.

Congress and only Congress can admit new states. The House Natural Resources Committee, the committee with responsibility for Puerto Rico, has been considering two status bills for months. Chairman Raul Grijalva asked the Department of Justice for clarification on the viability of the two bills and held two hearings on the subject. He has also participated in conversations about a possible compromise bill. The committee has not, however, moved forward to mark up the bills.

Gonzalez-Colon pointed out that statehood won the 2020 referendum.

“The majority voted in favor of statehood and [it] got more votes than all the political leaders of all the parties. That, to me, is broad consensus,” she said. “The Committee Chairman should bring the bill or bills to committee. And there, he and the committee will see which one has the support and which one does not. I have a lot of colleagues who are not co-sponsors who have expressed their support, and I know they would vote in favor of the bill (H.R.1522),” she said.

Abrogating responsibility

At the June hearing on these two bills, a member made the claim that voting for HR 1522 would be “abrogating responsibility” — that is, evading responsibility for Puerto Rico’s status by leaving the decision on statehood up to the people of Puerto Rico.

He was concerned that the language question was not dealt with in the bill. He leapt from this concern to the idea that admitting Puerto Rico without settling this question would be evading responsibility.

In fact, leaving Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory comprised of U.S. citizens, in the political status limbo of an unincorporated territory for more than a century truly is evading responsibility.

Congress has a responsibility to provide resolution for Puerto Rico’s political status. It should have happened long before now. Tell your congressperson to step up and do the right thing.



One response

  1. TO: Honorable US Congress; US President; US Federal/ Supreme Court; PR Government
    RE: Do Right–Support Equal Rights for Puerto Ricans; Plebiscite on Non-Territorial Options

    Hi! Today, the US Federal Government undemocratically controls the US Territory of Puerto Rico (PR)-with more fellow US Citizens-US Veterans than 20 States that have NO Federal consent of the governed! Thus, we ask you to fix this; patriotically support a Puerto Rican democratic Vote on: STATEHOOD vs INDEPENDENCE or Independence with Free Association– that will end Federal oppression, going on since 1898 (for over 125+ years). We must right a wrong, now!

    Even if one US Citizen (Individual) doesn’t have full Rights, is one too many!
    Facts are: Since 1898 (US invasion-till today)-millions of fellow US Citizen-US Veterans in Puerto Rico have a 2d Class US Citizenship-NO Vote for US President; NO just Representation in the US Congress; NO Parity in Federal Programs-Laws-Funding (includes Social Security, MEDICARE, MEDICAID, Emergency Management, Infrastructure, Education, Social, and Others); NO permanent statutory US Citizenship (even if residing in a State). Plus, the Federal Government– controls PR’s Borders, Currency, Laws, Security, Economy, Trade, etc.–under the unjust (1789) Territorial Clause.

    The Federal Government should be the Servant of ALL the People; NOT the Master of some!
    The People with Equal Rights come first, not a “separate & unequal” Status! Remember, in our great US Republic, the power resides with all “We the People” (not just some)–per our Declaration of Independence that calls for “Consent of the Governed”; our noble US Constitution that calls for Equal Rights-Fairness, and a Republican form of Government or a Representative Democracy (“a Government of the People, by the People, and for the People”–Lincoln)! Besides, unjust Laws (racist Insular Cases) which allow for the US Constitution to NOT be fully applied to US Puerto Rico– must be revoked!

    Puerto Ricans Sacrifice & Contribute to our USA since 1513!
    US Puerto Ricans are about 10m strong, (most live in the States)-are integrated as the 2d largest US Hispanic Group that sacrifice; greatly contribute (in all fields of endeavor) to our US. Since 1898, Puerto Ricans patriotically shed sweat, blood, and tears for our US Flag (WWI; WW-II; Korea; Vietnam; Global War on Terrorism…). PR pays more Federal Taxes than 6 States; is a US Market that creates Hundreds of Thousands of US Jobs. PR Ancestors (1st Governor of PR & Crew) came to Florida (in 1513)–107 years before the Pilgrims; others fought in the US War of Independence (1776)…; help develop our now USA.
    “We must Guard against a Tyranny of a Majority!”

    The FEDERAL GOVERNMENT can end this unjust inequality now, but, has not done so! Instead, some provide ageless EXCUSES that create a double standard that weren’t applied to other US Territories before Puerto Rico; politically distort; are biased or racist; misinform. This creates stalemate; perpetuates Federal oppression which is against the highest precepts-ideals of our Representative Democracy!
    “You can’t have it both ways, either you support Equal Rights or you allow Federal discrimination!”

    Silence to Federal discrimination; supports injustice!
    THE TIME IS NOW to patriotically ensure Equal Rights-Fairness for all “We the People”, not just some! Support a Non-Territorial Plebiscite (like HR 8393-PR Status Act)! Let the People VOTE for Equality!
    UNITED with Truth, Reason, and Civic Action-Democracy will prevail!
    For the Good of ALL! V/R,

    DENNIS O. FREYTES (MPA, MHR, BBA); US Army Ret.; Servant Leader
    FLORIDA VETERANS’ HALL OF FAME (FL Governor; House; Senate)
    *Advocate-Fairness/Equality; US Veterans; NAPREC Board; *Advisory/Policy Boards-US President; Congress; Governor; Mayors *Former-Trustee Valencia College (by FL Governor; Senate-confirmed) *Commander Infantry, Special Forces; Airborne School; Readiness Group *Commander PACCE-Global Humanitarian Missions (Medical/Engineers)*Professor Military Science/Commander USA Officer School (Cadet Brigade)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Sign up for our newsletter!

We will send you news about Puerto Rico and the path to statehood. No spam, just useful information about this historic movement.