Monday, February 13, 2017

Puerto Rico and the right to self-determination of the USA


At The Hill by

In my prior op-ed (“Statehood for Puerto Rico; an insane proposition,” published on Jan. 12, 2017) I stated that, “statehood is also an issue of self-determination for the United States. We are talking about the transformation from what the U.S. has been throughout its history, a nation-state, into a multi-national state”.  Well, the self-determination issue for the U.S. might be at the doors of Congress, the federal government, and the American people sooner than anyone expected.

The governor of Puerto Rico has just signed a law calling for another plebiscite. This Puerto Rican law invokes a disposition requested by the Obama administration and included in the 2014 Consolidated Appropriations Act authorizing $2,500,000 for the U.S. Department of Justice to fund an “objective, nonpartisan voter education about, and a plebiscite on, options that would resolve Puerto Rico’s future political status”. For the funds to be obligated, the Attorney General (AG) must make a finding “that the voter education materials, plebiscite ballot, and related materials are not incompatible with the Constitution and laws and policies of the United States."

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