Should Puerto Rico become a U.S. state?

Residents of Puerto Rico are not represented in Congress and can't vote for President

(AP Photo/Ricardo Arduengo)

BOSTON (WWLP) – Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello supports statehood as the island faces fiscal and economic challenges following two catastrophic hurricanes earlier this year.

Puerto Rico, an island in the Caribbean, is part of the United States. But is not itself a state; it’s a territory under the control of the U.S. government.

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Residents of Puerto Rico are American citizens, but because the island not a state, they are not represented in Congress and can’t vote for President.

Governor Rossello said there’s a need to transition to statehood now as Washington prepares a tax reform bill that he says doesn’t consider Puerto Rico and could penalize the island.

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He said Puerto Ricans could get equal treatment as U.S. citizens if they had representation in congress.

“In my view, this is offensive,” Rossello said. “And it is a complete byproduct of the second class citizenship that we’re exhibiting as Puerto Ricans, because we don’t have this representation.”

Governor Baker said he hasn’t thought much about statehood and is focusing on assisting evacuees coming to Massachusetts.