On November 3rd, Puerto Rico voters chose statehood as their preferred political status, with a majority of voters voting “Yes” on the question of whether Puerto Rico should be admitted to the United States. This clear majority confirmed the statehood wins in plebiscites held in 2012 and 2017.
So what will change under statehood?
The infographic below shows the things that will change when Puerto Rico is admitted as the 51st state. It also shows what will remain the same.
Puerto Rico will continue to have symbols of identity, including the Puerto Rican flag, the Puerto Rican state song, and any other state symbols she chooses.
Puerto Rico will continue to use the U.S. mails, U.S. currency, and U.S. passports. Federal laws and the U.S. constitution will still apply, and Puerto Rico will also still have local laws.
The voters of Puerto Rico will still elect the Governor or Puerto Rico and the legislature for the Island.
People born in Puerto Rico will continue to be U.S. citizens by birth.
Both Spanish and English will be official language of Puerto Rico, and the Island will continue to have its own distinct heritage and culture.
Puerto Rico will have the rights and responsibilities of a state, and will be equal to all the other states.
Puerto Rico will be able to vote in presidential elections. There will also be senators and members of the House of Representatives representing Puerto Rico, and they will also be elected on the Island.
Puerto Rico will receive the same benefits as all other states, and will be equal under federal programs.
Puerto Rico will participate in federal income taxes and be eligible for income tax credits, resulting in more money in the pockets of most Puerto Ricans.
The U.S. flag will have 51 stars.
Puerto Rico will have a permanent status. Energy and resources that have been focused on political status can be redirected to other issues.