Puerto Rico votes overwhelmingly for statehood but turnout dismal

Puerto Ricans vote in favour of being 51st US state, but doubts remain

Voters in Puerto Rico have again backed plans by their government to ask the US Congress to accept the territory as the 51st state of the union.

Among those eager for the USA territory to become the 51st state is Pedro Pierluisi, the island's former congressional representative.

Four previous plebiscites, or popular votes, have been held to decide the commonwealth's status in relation to the United States, with a majority of voters for the first time choosing statehood in 2012.

Puerto Rico Senate President Thomas Rivera Schatz vowed to push for statehood anyway.

Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello said voters in the economically troubled US island territory were sending a strong message to Congress.

Schatz argues that statehood would help Puerto Rico in its attempt to face down its debt crisis.

"Supporters of statehood did not seem enthusiastic about this plebiscite as they were five years ago", he said.

Puerto Rican governor Ricardo Rossello claimed victory, even though opposition leaders boycotted the ballot.

For decades the territory enjoyed a U.S. federal tax exemption that attracted many American companies to set up shop - but those breaks were ended in 2006, prompting firms to leave the island en masse.

In the decades ago, FALN claimed responsibility for more than 100 bombings in the US and Puerto Rico, including a lunchtime blast in 1975 that killed four people at New York's historic Fraunces Tavern. Puerto Ricans are getting the chance to tell U.S. Congress on Sunday which. The results of that vote showed that 97% of the 23% of Puerto Ricans who voted were in favor of statehood, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal.

Philippines: US Special Forces join fight to end Marawi siege
Battle for the city of Marawi now in its third week as thousands flee. "They are just providing technical support", he said. In 2002, the U.S. helped Philippine authorities track down Abu Sayyaf leader Abu Sabaya, who was killed in that operation.

Some statehood supporters on Sunday expressed dismay that certain voting centers appeared empty.

Many Puerto Ricans doubt Congress can be convinced to incorporate the island, especially in the island's current economic condition, The New York Times reported.

Sunday's referendum is the fifth one for Puerto Rico.

"We have to vote because things are not going well", she said.

New Yorker David Aldarondo, now living in Puerto Rico, shows his shirt of Puerto Rican nationalist Ramon Emeterio Betances, after voting in favour of independence during the fifth referendum on the island's status.

About 5.4 million Puerto Ricans live on the USA mainland, a number that is growing because of an exodus of people who can not find jobs or continue school on the depressed island.

Congress will have to approve the outcome of Sunday's referendum.

Puerto Rico came under USA control in 1898 after the Spanish-American War.

How would everyday life change if the island became a U.S. state?

A spokesman for the U.S. Justice Department told The Associated Press that the agency has not reviewed or approved the ballot's language. Take the last two referendums in 1998 and in 2012 for example. Federal officials in April rejected an original version, in part because it did not offer the territory's current status as an option. Sixty-one percent who answered a second question said they favored statehood, but almost half a million voters left that question blank, leading many to claim the results weren't legitimate.

Related:

  • Star Wars Battlefront 2 gameplay unveiled, free DLC announced

    Star Wars Battlefront 2 gameplay unveiled, free DLC announced

    The game was first teased past year in a short video but it's worth noting that the publisher never confirmed we'd be seeing it. Star Wars: Battlefront 2 was arguably the biggest draw for many this year, and EA's conference didn't disappoint.
    Ruth Davidson: 'No plans for breakaway party'

    Ruth Davidson: 'No plans for breakaway party'

    Her aides are said to be working on a deal that would see the Scottish party break away to form a separate organisation. The Scottish Tory leader hopes to convince the DUP to allow same-sex marriages in Northern Ireland.

    Israel's in love with its homegrown Wonder Woman Gal Gadot

    Steve is so deep in the mythology that after some debate we found that just like Wonder Woman needs Steve, we needed Steve too. With Jenkins now a proven commodity, she could potentially demand a much higher payday to come back for another film.
  • Gulf states announce humanitarian hotline for mixed Qatari families

    Treasury rules, according to a Foreign Agents Registration Act, or FARA, filing on Friday with the Justice Department. The US' "expectation is that these countries will immediately take steps to resolve the situation", he added.
    Woman Charged In Leaking Document Denied Bail

    Woman Charged In Leaking Document Denied Bail

    Victor has been indicted by a federal grand jury on a single count, but the government said it would likely add to the indictment. Because of her training, the indictment contends, victor knew disclosure of the document could endanger national security.

    Apple Watch will sync with your treadmill to share workout data

    The Siri face will deliver information to the user depending on what time it is and what events the user has lined up for the day. But integrating an NFC reader directly into a cardio machine is new, as is the ability to pair it with your watch with one tap.
  • Penguins to stick with goalie Matt Murray for Game 5

    He's not really anxious about the 190 feet in front of Murray, either. "He makes timely saves for us", Mike Sullivan said. As well, Penguins' rookie Jake Guentzel earned an assist on Sheary's goal, his 21st point of the playoffs.
    Uber driver says

    Uber driver says "let's hit the road" when Shareece Wright requested ride

    Twitter users praised Wright's dedication, which has set the bar fairly high for other players. The San Bernardino native called an Uber to travel from Chicago to Orchard Park, N.Y.
    Utah baseball team cancels 'Hourglass Appreciation' event

    Utah baseball team cancels 'Hourglass Appreciation' event

    The Raptors are a minor league affiliate Dodgers based in Ogden, Utah, about 40 miles north of Salt lake City. The team did not immediately respond to an email or voicemail requesting comment.
  • Scotland striker Leigh Griffiths 'gutted' after England's last-gasp leveller

    England, who were not impressive overall, remain top of Group F on 14 points while Scotland are in fourth spot on eight points. You can't do any more than they did.
    More than 40000 children at risk in Syria's Raqqa

    More than 40000 children at risk in Syria's Raqqa

    Today, they pierced into Raqa from the west, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group. He called on all parties to provide safe passage to those wishing to leave the city.
    CBS Says It Will Air Comey Testimony

    CBS Says It Will Air Comey Testimony

    No". "I think you'll see her take a larger role in the month of June", said Short, "to draw attention to this dilemma". Asked at a news conference if he pressured Comey to drop the Flynn probe, Trump had said, "No.

Comments

Latest news

Comeback Cavs end Warriors perfect postseason in Game 4
Then Kyrie Irving made the three-pointer that really won the championship for him and LeBron and the Cavaliers and Cleveland . Durant's 3-pointer with 45.3 seconds remaining was the go-ahead basket as the Warriors scored the game's final 11 points.

Cape Town storm kills 8
Knysna residents from every part of town are taking shelter from the storm near the water and at the Knysna Yacht Club. Some 2000 people across the city are receiving humanitarian relief.

Manchester United "unlikely" to offer Zlatan Ibrahimovic another contract
United have the option of exercising a 12-month extension to Ibrahimovic's one-year deal, which is up at the end of the month. The list is released centrally by the Premier League with indications that the Swede is on it.

'We are not ready to surrender,' Qatar's foreign minister says
However, the Qatari foreign minister downplayed the likelihood of military conflict. "They are hosted here. for peace talks". He stressed that Qatar's strategic choice was to solve any crisis through dialogue, Qatar News Agency (QNA) reported.

New smart speaker expected as Apple kicks off conference
That device was just a multi-touch feature phone with a few Apple utilities until it became everything with the App Store launch. Against other smart home assistants, the HomePod's targets are different from ostensible competitors like the Amazon Echo .

Halep battles past Svitolina to set up semi-final vs Pliskova
After saving a match point, she regrouped and won the final set 6-0 to move one game away from her second French Open final. I have never won against her on clay, so this was a really good match.

Eric Trump calls father's critics 'not even people'
And as Forbes points out in its report, "Altruism as a business-development strategy isn't necessarily illegal". Overall, he added , the foundation's efforts have yielded 'over $16.3 million dollars for the children of St.

Senate Republicans Homing in on Final Health Bill
The small print taketh away. "I'm very encouraged, very encouraged". "I'm not going to go into details". Ted Cruz, Texas Republican, defended the process, saying it fostered comity among Republicans.

Ariana Grande to resume tour in Paris amid tight security
The leader of rock band Mumford & Sons then sang Timshel while strumming his guitar. Richardson says Grande is "very fearless to come back so soon".

Coats takes center stage with new questions of Trump interference
Obviously, tomorrow, we will be hearing from former FBI Director Comey. Comey is expected to address that claim in the hearing.

Apple Adds iMac Pro as Other Macs Get Performance Upgrades
These new, more powerful iMacs represent Apple making good on a vow to introduce PCs that cater to the professional market. The rest of the Mac line will also be getting the Kaby Lake processor up to1.3 GHz Core i7 with Turbo Boost up to 3.6 GHz.

Late afternoon rain and thunderstorms likely Tuesday in Denver metro area
The area of low pressure will move away tomorrow night, and drier air will move in on Thursday , bringing an end to the rain . Clouds take over the next couple of days, limiting sunshine, and keeps temperatures cooler than average in the 60s.

What is Hillary Clinton thinking?
It nearly defied belief to watch Hillary throw the Democratic National Committee under the bus - which she did with a vengeance . Give Clinton (or one of her lackeys) credit for this comeback, a play on Trump's mysterious new pet word.

Watch out OPEC, US could break oil production record of 1970
However, U.S. crude production rose to 9.34 million bpd last week, up almost 500,000 bpd from a year ago. Rising production in Libya and Nigeria also raised concerns.

Teary-eyed Grande returns to stage for One Love Manchester concert
Gallagher, formerly of Oasis, earned loud cheers from the audience as he emerged in his home town in surprise form. Other performers will include Pharrell Williams, Usher, the Black Eyed Peas , Robbie Williams and Niall Horan.

Other news