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Puerto Rico as a State?

posted by Stephen Lubben

The House of Representatives has just voted to make the District of Columbia a state. Obviously the Senate half of the process might have to wait until next year, at least.

What about Puerto Rico? Obviously there is the question of whether the people of the Commonwealth want statehood. But if at least a majority do want statehood, it would seem to make sense address the issue at the same time that DC goes up.  

And of course, given that this is Credit Slips, we might also wonder what would happen to PROMESA, if statehood were to happen. Do we wait until the process is over, or end it "now," leaving the creditors to negotiate with a debtor that now has the benefit of the Eleventh Amendment?  Interesting things to mull over, but potentially at issue as soon as early next year.

Comments

Rather than independence, what about incorporating it into the state of Louisiana? Similar populations with roughly divergent political leanings would avoid creating new Senate seats (but would make new, competitive ones) while granting full suffrage to Puerto Ricans. Some unity of legal systems, some shared history, shared history of disasters and need for government support.

I would hesitate to push the parallelism here. There is substantial support for statehood within DC. Puerto Rico is more complex because there are some downsides that DC doesn't have to consider (e.g., federal personal income taxation).

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