Puerto Rico gov organizing Latinos to vote against Republicans in 2018
Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló said Thursday he will seek to mobilize Latino voters ahead of the 2018 midterm elections, citing the GOP’s tax overhaul passed this week.
Rosselló, a Democrat and member of the island’s New Progressive Party, argued on MSNBC that the Republican tax plan hurts Puerto Rico’s economy.
Asked which lawmakers he would target ahead of the midterms next year, Rosselló told host Katy Tur, “we’re going to be working on that.”
“Right now, we’re going to do an evaluation of all the congressmen and congresswomen that have pledged support toward the people of Puerto Rico, and in the time to take action they have reneged on that word,” he said.
“So there is still time to work, we want to do this of course in a nonpolitical fashion, but we have to recognize that our voice, you know, we are second-class citizens,” he continued. “We don’t have representation. But we do have 5.3 million Puerto Ricans in the United States and we want to organize.”
Rosselló has sharply criticized the Republican tax plan, which places a 10 percent tax on companies’ profits abroad, and a 12.5 percent tax on “intangible assets” held offshore. Rosselló said he believes the plan treats Puerto Rico like a foreign country.
“It is devastating and unconscionable that Congress would do this at this juncture,” Rosselló said last Friday. “They are treating Puerto Rico as a foreign jurisdiction so they are levying a full tax.”
One lawmaker in particular that has drawn Rosselló’s ire is Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), who joined with all other Senate Republicans in passing the tax plan this week.
“It is a devastating blow to the people of Puerto Rico,” Rosselló said this week. “Sen. Rubio seemed to understand what it meant that it had a severe impact on Puerto Rico. So it is disappointing.”