At the present time, Congress is pretty divided. Currently there are 211 Republicans and 220 Democrats in the House of Representatives. There are four vacancies. In the Senate there are 50 Republicans, 48 Democrats, and 2 Independents who caucus with the Democrats (essentially a tie). The Democrats have talked about adding Washington, D.C., which would give them additional Democrat votes, but that would require an amendment to the Constitution, so they have come up with another idea.
On Friday, The Conservative Review reported:
Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., Nydia Velázquez, D-N.Y., and Steny Hoyer, D-Md., are pushing the Puerto Rico Status Act, which could grant the territory double benefits of independence and U.S. citizenship for life.
The draft of the bill seeks to “enable the people of Puerto Rico to choose a permanent, nonterritorial, fully self-governing political status for Puerto Rico and to provide for a transition to and the implementation of that permanent, nonterritorial, fully self-governing political status.”
Puerto Rico’s most widely circulated newspaper, El Nuevo Dia, stated Wednesday that “the Democratic leadership and Puerto Rican Federal legislators reached a final agreement last night on the bill that will be introduced in the House of Representatives to propose a Federal plebiscite between statehood, free association and independence.”
This has nothing to do with Puerto Rican independence, it has to do with Democrat votes in Congress.
The article also notes that this act includes many benefits for Puerto Rico, but few responsibilities:
The bill’s options do not include maintaining Puerto Rico’s current status as a U.S. territory. If passed, more than 3 million Puerto Ricans will maintain both their U.S. and Puerto Rican citizenship. They will continue to reap financial benefits — funded by taxpayer dollars — without having to pay any taxes to the United States government.
The bill will also provide “an objective, non-partisan, federally funded education campaign leading up to the vote,” Rep. Velázquez said in a May press conference. “It authorizes the necessary funds to carry out a non-partisan voter education campaign and a national plebiscite and if necessary, a run-off plebiscite.”
“In addition to citizenship, this bill under both independence options would give the new nation of Puerto Rico a block grant equal to all the monies granted to the territory or its citizens during the year before nationhood for ten years,” explained journalist Alice Stewart. “This provision would make the value greater than current spending because there would be no Federal requirements. Finally, after year eleven, the grant would supposedly be reduced by 10% a year.”
Bribing a territory to bring in Democrat votes–how Democratic. It should also be noted that the biggest contributor to the current inflation is out-of-control government spending. This bill would simply add to that problem.