Problems with Puerto Rican Statehood Similar to Those That Led to U.S. Civil War

When I heard the news that a vote on Puerto Rican Statehood was set to take place tomorrow, my heart stopped. I couldn’t process the fact that this rather transformational news did not reach my ears until the day before it was to be voted on. It reminded me of that awful dream where you realize that you signed up for an important college class and forgot about it until the day of the final exam-only this is worse because it’s real.

The addition of Puerto Rico as a state will cause problems similar to those that led to the start of the Civil war. Before the outbreak of the war, political debate was raging about the addition of new states. Free and Slave states fought over the addition of new states. Each new state brought representative votes that could tip the scales of power between those states who supported slavery and those who stood in opposition.

The addition of Puerto Rico as a state will cause a similar tip. The New Progressive Party of Puerto Rico is behind the push for statehood.  If admitted into the Union, Puerto Rico will demand that their Representatives be seated in Congress. If  successful, socialist, progressive representatives  from Puerto Rico will deliver the additional votes desperately needed by the Obama Administration to further their agenda.

First, the legislation sets up a voting process rigged for success. The legislation sets up a preliminary vote and the voters are given two options. If a majority of Puerto Ricans vote in favor of changing the status of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico to “a different political status,” then a second vote would be scheduled to poll voters on the following three options:

1. “Independence: Puerto Rico should become fully independent from the United States;”
2. “Sovereignty in Association with the United States: Puerto Rico and the United States should form a political association between sovereign nations that will not be subject to the Territorial Clause of the United States Constitution;” and,
3. “Statehood: Puerto Rico should be admitted as a State of the Union.” Heritage Foundation

Our nation is at a crossroads. Will we be a socialist nation that enslaves it’s citizens to oppressive, draconian laws, regulations and taxes? Or will we reach back to the days of our founding and a belief that all men should be free? Unlike the Civil War, we are battling with principles and ideas rather than guns and cannon fire. Let’s hope that the Civil War did indeed end slavery in this nation and that the Union as envisioned by our nation’s founders will survive.

  • Omar

    There are some misconceptions over Puerto Rico and the political status here. First of all, HR 2499, or the Puerto Rico Democracy Act of 2009/2010 simply asks islanders what status option they prefer. There were supposed to be two ballots under that proposed legislation. The first asks Puerto Ricans whether they are fine with the current territorial (Commonwealth) status, or if they would want to move towards status change. The second ballot would have given islanders the option to choose whether they want statehood (51st state), secession (independence) or free association (sovereign nation with certain special ties with the United States). With the Foxx amendment, the current commonwealth option was added to what would have been the second ballot. Anyway the second misconception over Puerto Rico is the island's politics regarding the status. Unlike the rest of the United States and the individual states, the political parties in Puerto Rico are not divided between Democrats or Republicans (although both Democrats and Republicans each have their own party division in the island territory as many politicians in Puerto Rico are affiliated with either one party or the other in the mainland), but rather divided on the status issue. There are three major political parties in Puerto Rico, two of which govern the island. The two parties that govern the island are the New Progressive Party (which favors statehood, a.k.a. admitting Puerto Rico as the 51st state of the U.S.) and the Popular Democratic Party (which favors the current commonwealth status). Both parties each get about half of the island's vote in elections (48% each, about 96% together). In addition, there is the third and smaller party, the Puerto Rico Independence Party (which, of course, favors seceding from the U.S.), which doesn't have any seats in government since that party gets less than 5% of the island's vote in elections. Now, among the two major parties (New Progressive Party and Popular Democratic Party), there are members who are affiliated with either the Democrats or the Republicans. However, there are misconceptions over who is affiliate which which mainland party. The New Progressive Party (NPP ) has politicians that are affiliated with both the Democrats and the Republicans (although each NPP politician is affiliated with either one mainland party or the other), while the Popular Democratic Party (PDP) has politicians that are mainly aligned with the Democrats) The Puerto Rico Independence Party (PIP) has politicians that are affiliated with communist, socialist and other far-left parties, since the PIP is anti-American and pro-communist (the separatists align themselves with the Castro regime in Cuba and other far-left groups like the Workers World Party). The island's Republican Party supports statehood for Puerto Rico.

  • Omar

    Aside from the misconception about the bill, comparing Puerto Rico's possible statehood to the Civil War is erroneous. The Civil War was about saving the Union and abolishing slavery. Puerto Rico and the possible statehood process is about admitting a new state in the Union and granting its residents full equal voting rights as American citizens at the national level. How is admitting a new state in the Union comparable to the Civil War (other than the fact that the Civil War led to the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments) In addition, How would granting statehood to Puerto Rico create a socialist state or benefit the Obama administration? The far-left in the island and in the mainland do not support statehood. The socialists want Puerto Rico to secede from the U.S. in order to create a repressive Marxist regime in the island. Despite the word progressive, the New Progressive Party does not support socialism. the NPP supports Puerto Rico becoming the next state of the Union. In fact, the NPP supports the U.S. government and loves American patriotism and democracy. The New Progressive Party has many prominent conservatives (the NPP consists of politicians who are affiliated with either the Democrats or the Republicans), most notably, Governor Luis Fortuno, who is the head of the NPP.