Darren Soto Pushes for Puerto Rico Recovery as Gov. Ricardo Rosselló Aims to Move Up the 2020 Primary
Congressman Darren Soto (D-FL) last month released a Congressional Puerto Rico Recovery Blueprint, a report outlining the policy areas and plan of action Congress must take for the recovery of the island. Soto presented the report to congressional leaders following a number of meetings with multiple Puerto Rican government officials and visits to the island. The four policy areas of focus in the blueprint include: 1) disaster relief, 2) economic development, 3) PROMESA/debt reform, and 4) Medicaid reform. Last week, Soto and Representatives Nydia Velázquez (D-NY) and José Serrano (D-NY) wrote a letter saying FEMA’s recovery efforts related to a hospital in Vieques and at public schools throughout the island have been deficient. “We expect immediate action to correct these deficiencies so as to expedite the post-hurricane recovery in Puerto Rico,” they wrote. “We remind you that the lives of U.S. citizens residing in Puerto Rico are impacted by these essential services.” Democratic presidential candidates have also focused on the island -- though maybe not be enough. Politico reports that Governor Ricardo Rosselló is backing a plan to move the 2020 primary from early June to one of the final two weekends in March. Rosselló hopes the move might lead more candidates to pay attention to Puerto Rico’s recovery efforts and the statehood for the island. “We’re working hard to make statehood a top-tier issue,” said Manny Ortiz, an advisor to Rosselló who’s also a DNC member. “Puerto Rico moving up the primary can only help highlight the issues that are important: the unequal treatment of citizens and the statehood issue.” More on Rosselló’s push here.