Statehood for Puerto Rico prevails for the first time

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    Puerto Rico Elections

    Supporters of the pro-commonwealth Popular Democratic Party cheer while waiting for the arrival of their candidate for governor of Puerto Rico Alejandro Garcia Padilla as the first tallied votes mark a tendency in his favor early Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Incumbent Gov. Luis Fortuno conceded defeat to Garcia Padilla in a close election with a margin less than 1 percent. (AP Photo/Dennis M. Rivera Pichardo)

    As the dust settles in Puerto Rico, and Gov. Luis Fortuño faces his defeat, he takes solace in the fact that the statehood option won in the plebiscite held on Tuesday.

    The plebiscite asked two questions: whether voters wanted to keep the current status — with almost all votes counted, 53.99 percent said noand gave them three options as an alternate status, which they had to vote on regardless of their vote on the first question.

    The option of statehood won 61.15 percent, with 802,179 votes. The next most popular option was a free sovereign state, with 33.31 percent, or 436,997 votes. However, almost half a million voters left the second question blank, in line with what the Popular Democratic Party (PPD) had asked their followers to do, to protest.

    Will statehood happen for Puerto Rico

    Puerto Rico voted for statehood.

    For the first time since 1952, Puerto Rico asked for statehood, in a plebiscite that is unlikely to bring results due to its controversial nature. (AP Photo/Ricardo Arduengo)

    On Tuesday night, when the PPD was claiming a wide victory, Fortuño’s New Progressive Party (PNP) started releasing results for the plebiscite, which were quite favorable for them. But due to the plebiscite’s controversial nature, it is unlikely anything will happen to get statehood for the island.

    Many have criticized the layout of the plebiscite, including U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ), who said last year, regarding the initial proposals for this plebiscite, that it was created to yield a specific result and therefore had no validity.

    The PPD concurs, and for a long time has said this plebiscite was a scam to discredit the current status. Governor-elect Alejandro Garcia Padilla said on Tuesday night that his administration has no plans to act on the plebiscite results. The PPD has stood in favor of the commonwealththe current statussince the constitution was established under the first elected Puerto Rican governor, Luis Muñoz Marin, who founded the PPD.

    Of course, the PNP had a significant win when Resident Commissioner Pedro Pierluisi was re-elected for a second term. Pierluisi vows to take the plebiscite results to Congress and ask for Puerto Rico to become the 51st state.

    This is the fifth plebiscite held to define the island’s status since 1952. The first four times, statehood was rejected every single time.

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    Source: VOXXI News

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