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puerto rico Status Act

puerto rico Status Act

Puerto rico status act

U.S. Senators Martin Heinrich (D-N.M), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-N.V.), and Alex Padilla (D-C.A.) introduced the Puerto Rico Status Act on November 6, 2023. This legislation would authorize a federally sponsored plebiscite to resolve Puerto Rico’s political status.

 This is the Senate Companion of H.R. 2757, which was introduced in April by Representatives Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.), Nydia Velázquez (D-N.Y.), Darren Soto (D-Fla.), and Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.), and the Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González-Colón (R-P.R.). This legislation is supported by the Governor of Puerto Rico, Pedro Pierluisi.

During the 117th Congress, this Puerto Rico Status Act passed the House of Representatives with bipartisan support. The Biden Administration endorsed the legislation with a favorable Statement of Administration Policy on December 15, 2022.

The Puerto Rico Status Act would:

  • Authorize a federally sponsored plebiscite to resolve Puerto Rico’s political status, specifying and defining Puerto Rico’s non-territorial status options, including the ramifications for citizenship:
    • Statehood
    • Independence
    • Sovereignty in Free Association with the United States
  • Provide for an objective, nonpartisan, federally funded voter education campaign leading up to the vote
  • Establish a process and timeline for the U.S. Department of Justice to review the voter education materials and plebiscite ballot
  • Authorize necessary funds to carry out an initial plebiscite and, if necessary, a runoff plebiscite
  • Describe the transition to and implementation of each status option in sufficient detail for eligible voters in Puerto Rico to make an informed choice
  • Ensure implementation of the option that is chosen by a majority of valid votes cast

Endorsers of the Puerto Rico Status Act include: League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Puerto Rico Statehood Council, Puerto Rico Escogio Estadidad, National Puerto Rico Equality Coalition, Igualdad Futuro Seguro, Instituto Misión Estadista, Puerto Rico Star Project, Democratic Party of Puerto Rico, Republican Party of Puerto Rico, Young Democrats of Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico Young Republican Federation, Young Professionals for Puerto Rico Statehood, Veterans for Puerto Rico Statehood Task Force, Veteranos con Puerto Rico, and the American Latino Veterans Association.