Wanda Vázquez, until this week the Attorney General of Puerto Rico, has been sworn in as governor. Ricardo Rossello stepped down last Friday and Pedro Pierluisi was sworn in on the same day. The Supreme Court of Puerto Rico ruled that his appointment as Secretary of State was unconstitutional, and should not result in his becoming governor. Instead, Vázquez was named governor.
Vázquez had already expressed an unwillingness to serve as governor, as seen in her Twitter feed below.
In a statement after the court’s decision, however, she released a statement saying, “I arrive at this position by constitutional provision and by opinion of law, but with the greatest respect and determination to serve my people and to push Puerto Rico forward.”
Pierluisi released a statement of support, saying, “I wish the Honorable Wanda Vázquez Garced the greatest success as Governor of Puerto Rico. I will always be in the best disposition to advance any initiative that seeks to improve the quality of life of our people and to encourage the Federal Government to fulfill its responsibility to provide the support that Puerto Rico needs for its recovery and reconstruction.”
Vazquez served as District Attorney for 20 years, specializing in cases of domestic and sexual abuse. She was also the director of the Office for Women’s Rights.
Will Vazquez stay on?
There have been protests against Vazquez, and there are rumors that the Island’s leaders have plans to put Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon, the Resident Commissioner for Puerto Rico in the U.S. Congress, in the position of governor.
Gonzalez-Colon has reiterated that she will support whoever is Governor of Puerto Rico, and that the decision is not up to her.
With three governors in a single week, Puerto Rico is already making history. The focus of change is not on the governors, though. It is time for Puerto Rico to end its status as an unincorporated territory. It is this status, not the individual governors, which has caused Puerto Rico’s untenable position.