Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primary

msn1 in Breaking Blue brings word that Puerto Rico has changed its contest, the last (as of now, anyway) of the 2008 Democratic primary season, from a caucus to a primary and, to conform with DNC rules, is moving from June 7 to June 1.

2008 Democratic Convention Watch has an e-mail from Kenneth D. McClintock, DNC member from Puerto Rico:

[Puerto Rico will] change the voting process from 8 caucuses to a primary with voting places in all 1,800+ barrios in Puerto Rico's 78 municipalities. This is done in light of the hundreds of thousands of Democrats expected to turn out on June 1, a late date in which we would have originally expected a pro-forma vote with low turnout. [...]

The change was approved unanimously by all members present, including many Clinton supporters (such as State Chair Prats and myself) and many Obama supporters.

The rationale? There's no way we could handle more than a few tens of thousands of voters in eight district caucuses, while we can handle a million voters (at least 500 voters between 8am and 3 pm per polling place in each of 1,800+ barrios) in a primary.

There's been a lot of talk in the media about Puerto Rico's caucuses being the Democrats' only contest to allocate delegates through a winner take all system, positing that perhaps Hillary Clinton would be able to eat into Barack Obama's pledged delegate lead by winning all of Puerto Rico's 56 pledged delegates. Not so according to The Washington Post's Fact Checker:

The notion of Puerto Rico being a "winner-take-all" jurisdiction stems from previous presidential primary contests, which were pretty much over by the time the Puerto Ricans got to vote. John Kerry swept Puerto Rico in 2004 just as Al Gore triumphed in 2000 because they were the only candidates left in the race, and the party bosses could manipulate the caucus process.

This time will be very different, according to several Puerto Rican Democratic leaders I contacted earlier today by phone. [...]

"Both the candidates have supporters on the island," said Eliseo Roques, vice-chair of the Democratic National Committee's Hispanic Caucus, and a prominent Puerto Rican politician who is neutral in the race. "You will see a closely contested race."

Certainly Hillary Clinton has to be favored in Puerto Rico, perhaps even moreso now that it's a primary, but don't expect it to be the delegate goldmine some were thinking it would be.

Tags: 2008 Presidential election, Democratic nomination, puerto rico (all tags)



Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

Her goal now is to end up with the popular vote lead.

by lori 2008-03-06 07:48PM | 0 recs
PA tilts toward Obama

Enthusiasm Tilts Toward Obama in Pa.
By MICHAEL RUBINKAM - 1 hour ago

STROUDSBURG, Pa. (AP) -- For Edwin David, who served with the famed World War II unit of black fighters known as the Tuskegee Airmen, Sen. Barack Obama is an easy choice.

"Just let me live till voting time in November," said David, 83, living in retirement in the Pocono Mountains. "In my lifetime, we just might get to see the first African-American president of the United States!"

Fresh from victories in the big states of Ohio and Texas, and with polls having shown her holding the lead here, even if it has dwindled, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton starts her campaign in Pennsylvania as the favorite to win the April 22 primary.

But in random interviews last week with dozens of voters in swing districts across the state, much of the Democratic voter enthusiasm seemed to tilt toward Obama, not only because he is a fresh face, but because they believe he has the best shot at beating Republican nominee-in-waiting John McCain, whom they call old and out-of-touch.

But unlike David, many said it wasn't an easy decision.

Kate Clark, 53, a cafe owner in Nazareth, a small town near Allentown, said she struggled with her choice. Tempted to vote for Clinton because of her gender, she said Obama's energy and vision ultimately won out.

"I think we need to see the United States and see the world through eyes that are younger, through eyes that have dreams, through eyes that see something new for the nation," Clark said.

Clark said she worries about the health of the environment -- and the economy. Fewer people are walking through the doors of her quaint eatery now than at any time since it opened 11 years ago.

"People are afraid. The five dollars that they have is being spent on gas, on food," she said. "Everyone's tight with cash."

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5iTUgX jxuUNmDrcqwzFdR59AaJ1JQD8V8GEG80

by dearreader 2008-03-07 12:32AM | 0 recs
Re: PA tilts toward Obama

Or instead we could look at, you know, numbers:

Lastest Poll

"In Pennsylvania, Hillary Clinton has opened a fifteen percentage point lead over Barack Obama. The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey shows Clinton attracting 52% of the vote while Obama earns 37%."

by Marvin42 2008-03-07 05:02AM | 0 recs
Re: PA tilts toward Obama

6 weeks is a lifetime, and Rasmussen's previous numbers show that the electorate is highly fluid.

by rfahey22 2008-03-07 05:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

Is it winer take all or not??

Can someone give a definitive answer now?

by swarty 2008-03-06 07:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

no, it is not winner take all. it only seemed that way in recent elections, because Puerto Rico essentially caucused in lockstep, perhaps with a few rules changes to help it along, to deliver huge blocs of delegates to the presumptive nominees.

Until this new change from caucus to primary, Puerto Rico was set to conduct caucuses under the same DNC sanctioned rules as all other states: http://www.thegreenpapers.com/P08/PR-D.p html

by along 2008-03-06 08:07PM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

Thanks for the clarification.

by swarty 2008-03-06 08:13PM | 0 recs

I thought it was the rules of the DNC that all of its contests had to be proportional representation.

by mecarr 2008-03-06 07:56PM | 0 recs

There had been talk of PR being winner take all. Perhaps that has changed along with their election plan?

by swarty 2008-03-06 08:07PM | 0 recs

No, the talk was always false and was based on a misunderstanding. PR was never supposed to be winner take it all.

by marcotom 2008-03-06 09:36PM | 0 recs
Why is Hillary favored in Puerto Rico?

Is this the old "all Latinos are alike" thing? She does well among Mexican Americans. But Puerto Ricans identify more with a candidate of African descent than would Mexicans. There's a reason the Governor of Puerto Rico is a big supporter of Obama. And there's a reason Jesse Jackson won there in 1988.

by elrod 2008-03-06 07:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Why is Hillary favored in Puerto Rico?

agreed.  Puerto Rico is not necessarily fertile ground for her.

by thereisnospoon 2008-03-06 07:59PM | 0 recs
Hispanics are not voting as a monolith anyway

Past elections have shown us that even Republicans can get the Hispanic vote.  Poll after poll has shown that latinos vote on real issues just like everyone else (and no, immigration is never the top issue and in P.R. it's even less so)

Health care, education, jobs, Iraq -- those have been the top priorites for Latinos in exit polls.

The person above you was partially correct that at least in Puerto Rico there is MORE affinity to someone who is African American than would Mexican Americans or Central Americans (in general) due to the historical sociology.  But for many people who have never visited the island, I think they'd be surprised at how different Puerto Ricans on the island are as a group from those on the mainland East coast.

I get frustrated with the ignorance but then I remind myself I'm dealing with blogs!

by diplomatic 2008-03-06 09:09PM | 0 recs
Re: Why is Hillary favored in Puerto Rico?

disagree you all are forgetting the place with the largest u.s. population of puerto ricans....new york.

and if you think that won't give her sway...

by Lazeriath 2008-03-06 09:43PM | 0 recs
Well no

Most Puerto Ricans themselves "identify" themselves as white believe it or not and there are a lot of subtle prejudices which seek to distance from African American roots.  At the same time, being from Puerto Rico myself I must tell you that the island is a diverse paradise and the people are the "happiest on Earth" according to a recent survey.

Puerto Rico is not the Dominican Republican and is not mostly black.  We come in all colors - from Ricky Martin to Roberto Clemente to everything in between.

The issues will determine the vote not race/ethnicity.  Generally speaking the island loves the Clinton family.

by diplomatic 2008-03-06 08:50PM | 0 recs
I don't mean anglo white

and in reality most are mixed race, but just saying what they tell the census on the island.

by diplomatic 2008-03-06 09:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Landslide in PR for CLINTON!

Hey DemLady!!

Thanks for the most informative post!  You nailed the many reasons why Puertorriqueños will end up choosing Hillary. But, it sure will be a fun, energized election, Puerto Rican style!

I should really retract my notion that the Clinton pardon of the FALN is a reason Hillary will prevail there.

Given, independence supporters numbered less than 5% from what I see, this is not really on most people's radar.

Now, if we want to talk about the assasination of Filiberto Ojeda, that really is an issue that galvanizes the Island.

I'd like to see both candidates promise to get to the bottom of that tragic abuse of power.

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-07 09:10AM | 0 recs
Hold on. Let's not get crazy here....

Your enthusiasm for HRC and her support here in PR may be true, but to temper it a bit...  

First, I live in Western PR and most people I know here either aren't paying much attention to the federal primary races because A. they don't care, or B. they are too busy with the intrigues of the PR primaries for island govt positions this weekend.  Those that do state a preference are tilting Obama--but I mostly speak with younger people.

Second, Puerto Ricans from New York are called Nuyoricans here. That's not necessarily a compliment.  It identifies someone with PR heritage but who has lost touch with what it means to "really be puertorrican".  Of course, islanders have little idea what it means to be Nuyorican either.  The migration to NY was greatest in the 50s, and therefore the NYPR population has spent quite a bit of time away from the island and developed its own point of view.  The Orlando numbers, if they are correct, are more telling, because that migration is more recent.

Third, there are about 4million PR'ns on the island and only slightly more than that in the whole US, including Florida, Cleveland, Chicago, and other centers of PR migrants/descendents.  The states overtook PR in PR-descent population in the last 3 years.

I agree though that Acevedo Vila's endorsement means nothing.  He is terribly unpopular and actually plays politics in exactly the way Obama says he is against.  Obama might as well accept an endorsement from Ohio's Ken Blackwell for all the good Acevedo will do him.

by The lurking ecologist 2008-03-07 06:56PM | 0 recs

Primaries are better. More Democratic. More representative.

Primaries allow MORE people to vote and participate. Caucuses do not.

by kevin22262 2008-03-06 07:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Good!

Caucuses are more participatory... you get to make your case to your neighbors, which is raw democracy in action... extremely empowering for the voter...  But, primaries are more available...

by LordMike 2008-03-06 08:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Good!

but it doesn't favor Hillary so it's bad remember!

by rejectandenounce 2008-03-06 08:10PM | 0 recs

glad to see you care.


by kevin22262 2008-03-06 08:22PM | 0 recs
What a childish response.

At least LordMike is able to point the advantages of both...

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-06 09:14PM | 0 recs
I partially

agree and disagree.

Most people who show up at the caucuses, especially this year, would rather primary. Most want to leave right away and want nothing to do with anything else after they sign in and vote.

Plus the total amount of people participating is much lower. There is NO WAY the caucuses in WA could have accommodated all the people who actually wanted to vote. This would be the same for all caucuses, especially in 2004 and this year.

I do enjoy the caucuses but most don't.

I have been to a few here in WA state.

by kevin22262 2008-03-06 08:21PM | 0 recs
Re: I partially

Caucuses suck!!! Undemocratic!!

My advice to you: Work to change the system in 2012. In 2008, these are the rules that we democrats have chosen.  You. And me.

Get over it.

by swarty 2008-03-06 08:42PM | 0 recs
Re: I partially

Get over it? Why? I have always felt this way. This has nothing to do with this race.


by kevin22262 2008-03-07 06:46AM | 0 recs
Caucus vs. Primary

At our county assembly, we put forward a resolution to change CO from a caucus to a primary state.  Caucuses are fun IMO but they are confusing and complicated for most people.

by GFORD 2008-03-07 05:03AM | 0 recs
Re: Good!

The Texas two-step was a joke!  That caucus should be abolished IMO.  I do not think any of the caucuses are as fair as primaries.  Look at all of the money and time spent in Iowa for a solid month for such a small participation out of millions of Iowa citizens.  Town hall meetings are better than caucuses for voters to make up their minds about a particular candidate(s), but primaries make a lot more sense being more democratic.

I witnessed the utter confusion of the Texas caucus last Tuesday night.  Voters first had to wait in long lines to vote, and then they were requested to come back by 6:30pm to get in line for the supposed start time for the caucus at 7:15pm.  Well, so many people were still in long lines to vote that most of the caucuses did not start until almost 9:30pm or 10:00.  Thousands of people showed up for the caucuses in the urban areas of Texas in very small venues with no planning, materials, or enough volunteers to assist anyone. One caucus did not end untl 3:00 am.  Families came with small children;  elderly and infirm people came to do their duty risking their health.  No one checked to verify that we had actually voted earlier in the day.  How can this type of system be fair.  It was ripe with fruad.  So, primaries are the way to go.  Caucuses are a hinderance.  Give us the purple finger, and let us vote for Gods sake!  To hell with the caucus!

by mcctx 2008-03-06 10:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Good!

I agree with your points on caucuses, but I would rather have more voters than a more participatory experience.  I think caucuses work great when you're talking about a small and dedicated voter pool.

When you start talking about 100s of thousands or even millions of voters, the idea just simply breaks down.  Considering the population of the U.S., I don't see how caucuses can be feasible or even a "good" idea going forward.

That said, if you think you can convince me otherwise, I'm all ears.  :)


by samizdat 2008-03-07 05:03AM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

Delegate goldmine is irrelevant for her.  she can't catch him in pledged delegates.

She is going to pray she can overtake him in the popular vote, and convince the superdelegates to steal the nomination from him.

by thereisnospoon 2008-03-06 07:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

Are you saying that the nomination is the property of Obama, and that if she just happens to win more votes than him....she steals it?

Just asking.

by Scan 2008-03-06 09:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

You don't understand:  Obama is the annointed one and anyone who tries to interfere with His Destiny is ignorant, corrupt, and evil in some combination...monsters, all of them.

by InigoMontoya 2008-03-06 09:52PM | 0 recs
Popular vote vs delegates

It would be a bad situation if he was winning in delegates while she was winning in the popular vote.  Either way it went, would make a bunch of people angry.

Fortunately, as of now the person winning the most pledged delegates is the person winning the popular vote.  It's best if it stays that way.

Do you agree?

by GFORD 2008-03-07 05:10AM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

You qualify as a nominee by getting the most delegates of any kind.

You are legitimized as a nominee through democratic support

That can either be through the pledged delegates that are awarded throughout the primary or through the popular vote.

The pledged delegates are weighted in a way to adequately represent normally underrepresented groups, but also introduce an significant distortion of popular will by rounding errors because a significant percentage are distributed on the district level.

The popular vote shows most clearly the actual preferences of those that voted but because of both the difference in selection methods and imperfect tally keeping it's very difficult to have an accurate count.

Both have their pros and con's but are a legitimate way to legitimize a candidate as a nominee.

To claim theft because the other candidate gained the nomination through the rules while both candidates have legitimate claims is nothing but mindless cheerleading from people more attached to their candidate then to reality.

My personal hope is that the nominee will have both the popular support and the pledged delegates behind him/her. A selection founded on dueling legitimizations would probably turn into a messy affair. But we certainly shouldn't cut a democratic process short just because we're afraid of a bit of chaos. Doing so would only result in illegitimate candidates.

by Ernst 2008-03-07 02:38AM | 0 recs

I believe PR has 55 Delegates.

by kevin22262 2008-03-06 07:59PM | 0 recs

I saw where you wrote 56.

by kevin22262 2008-03-06 08:04PM | 0 recs

55 pledged; 8 supers

by jjgtrs 2008-03-06 08:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

If she does wind up favored by polls, it will be very narrowly.

The hispanic heritage of most Puerto Rican citizens is quite different than that of Latinos in CA and TX. Moreover, there are millions of Puerto Ricans of African-American ancestry.

In addition, Puerto Rico's Governor, Aníbal Acevedo Vilá, endorsed Obama, "after Obama wrote a letter saying that he favored the Constitutional Assembly, proposed by the Popular Democratic Party and Governor Acevedo Vilá, as one of the mechanisms to define Puerto Rico's political future."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/An%C3%ADbal _Acevedo_Vil%C3%A1

by along 2008-03-06 07:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

The Governror is HIGHLY unpopular now -- a complete laughing stock.

That won't be the reason Puerto Ricans choose Barrack.

I love the excitement they are feeling! Finally, maybe a little chance to have a say!

I think Hillary will prevail -- the Clinton's are quite popular there, but I think Barak will make it a great contest.  I wish I was there, but arrive on June 8th!

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-06 08:41PM | 0 recs
That's not true

there are not "millions" of Puerto Ricans of African ancestry.

Many people in the continental U.S> may get that perception because in places like the Northeast most Puerto Ricans tend to be poor economically and have left the island.  The wealthier and middle class either stay on the island or go to Florida and those tend to be more Spanish ancestry.

There's a socioeconomic/racial connection that most people are not aware of.

by diplomatic 2008-03-06 08:52PM | 0 recs
Re: That's not true

I was not relying on preception, but rather ethnic composition numbers. But you are certainly correct: I think it is closer to 700,000, based on 8% black and 10.9% "mixed and other", reported in the lasat census.

by along 2008-03-06 09:17PM | 0 recs
And yes let's be clear: They are Hispanic

we're just talking about subgroups within the Hispanic umbrella.  Being "white" there has a different definition and it does not mean anglo.

I'm glad you followed up and looked at actual numbers.

by diplomatic 2008-03-06 09:22PM | 0 recs
Re: And yes let's be clear: They are Hispanic

I certainly did not deny that Puerto Ricans are Hispanic, I said that they had a different heritage than the populations of Texas and California. Is that not correct?

And as I said, I had looked at the numbers; it turns out I had interpreted them incorrectly.

by along 2008-03-06 09:50PM | 0 recs
Oh I know :)

I was clarifying my own statements not yours.  I didn't want people to confuse the term "white" that I had used earlier (in another post) as somehow saying they didn't consider themselves Hispanic.  It gets tricky and confusing sometimes with the term.


by diplomatic 2008-03-06 10:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Oh I know :)

Oh I see! I also apologize.

by along 2008-03-06 10:25PM | 0 recs
And your Grandma...

...(from) where is she?

Indeed, most PRns would not report themselves as black or mixed, but on the street nearly all would admit that they probably have African blood as well as Taino blood.  Research from JC Martinez Cruzado shows that both are true.  So a correct statement would be "there are millions of Puerto Ricans with African ancestry" instead of "of Af. anc."

To me, PR is the melting pot that the US claims to be, because in PR the races/nationalities actually mixed, rather than form enclaves, at least historically.  It does not appear to be the case with migrants from Cuba or the DR in the last 80 years.

by The lurking ecologist 2008-03-07 07:05PM | 0 recs

since they will be getting more attention... maybe PR will want to become a state?   :)

by kevin22262 2008-03-06 08:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Maybe...

They've shot it down in the past, unlike DC (who basically gets shafted by their status) PR actually has it pretty good, all of the benefits of statehood (federal funding, welfare, etc), with the exception of political representation, and none of the drawbacks (no income tax).

by Socraticsilence 2008-03-06 08:05PM | 0 recs

No income tax is not necessarily a good thing.

by kevin22262 2008-03-06 08:13PM | 0 recs
Re: well

It is to the people who don't have to pay it, yet still receive government services.

by davisb 2008-03-06 08:19PM | 0 recs

look at their economy and what services they do receive.

They are treated like a poor step child.

by kevin22262 2008-03-06 08:24PM | 0 recs
Re: but

That may be true, but charging them federal income tax isn't a solution to that problem.

by davisb 2008-03-06 08:37PM | 0 recs
Re: but

But.... putting them inside the process instead of just accepting what is given them goes a long ways towards fixing the issues they have.

by kevin22262 2008-03-07 06:44AM | 0 recs
Re: but

Hillary will fix that!!!

by swarty 2008-03-06 08:43PM | 0 recs
Re: well

Well, as a colonial power, it is our moral duty and obligation to take care of our possession until such time we finall fucking decide to give it liberty via statehooyd or independence!!

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-06 08:43PM | 0 recs
Re: well

Hillary will give PR statehood Just you wait and see!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

GO HILLARY! You rock!

by swarty 2008-03-06 08:51PM | 0 recs
Re: well

I agree, but think about it as a voter in PR, you're essentially voting to impose Income Taxes in exchange for voting congressmen.

by Socraticsilence 2008-03-06 08:23PM | 0 recs
There is more than that

they are taken advantage of in many ways.

by kevin22262 2008-03-06 08:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Maybe...


Jesus Christ.

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-06 08:29PM | 0 recs

Federal formula funds are not divvied up here using the same formula as in the states.  For example, PR gets much less than their per capita/per need share of medicaid/medicare.

The salaried middle class pays substantially more of their income to the island income tax than they would by adding state and federal taxes together in nearly every state, maybe in every state.  Someone who grosses about 50k will pay about 37% of their income in taxes (not counting soc. sec.), which we pay.

Most independent studies (i.e. not commissioned by statehooders or commonwealthers) show that the economic impact of statehood would be a wash for the fed govt.

The underground economy is so vast here, and the local tax agencies so incompetent, that a few years of the IRS would greatly help the salaried middle class by catching the non-salaried cheaters.  Of course, the IRS would probably have to move 1/3 of its operation here to keep up!

by The lurking ecologist 2008-03-07 07:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Maybe...

It's really nearly 50-50.  I have family (in-laws)on both sides.

Let the people decide without the false hope of reformed commonwealth status -- there's no such thing under the constitution.

The American in me would love to see PR join us as a state, she's a beautiful land and people, but my heart wishes she could be free.  That could be impossible, as many think, hence statehood is a very viable option to many.

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-06 08:47PM | 0 recs
Re: Maybe...

I saw some discussion about that once.  There are people in PR who would like to become a state but I think the majority don't.

by GFORD 2008-03-07 05:39AM | 0 recs

I think this will allow Barack some of the delegates and it just might be a close passionate battle.

As others noted, there are some factors that would endear Puerto Ricans to Barack, but there are many in favor of Hillary too.

The Clintons remain extradonarily popular there, due to Mr. Clinton's pardon of Puerto Rican Independists and Mrs. Clinton's work with the Puerrtorican community as New York Senator.

Also, Puerto Rican culture is not as machismo as some other latino cultures.

I simply love the fact the Puerto Ricans are so excited to finally have a small part in the process of picking our next Commander-in-Chief, someone they will continue to serve honorably, even if they can't vote for the person in November...

In short, Puerto Rican women, rule the roost and the people are not afraid of female leadership.'\

There is a large number of female pastors in the Protestant churches there, as well as the former governor Silva, ah, but that's another story!!

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-06 08:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Exciting!!

Sorry, I got a paragraph out of order there.  The excitement part should have been at the end.

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-06 08:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Exciting!!

Yeah, um she really better hope those pardons don't become an issue that the mainstream media picks up on, because they will not play well on the mainland.

by Socraticsilence 2008-03-06 09:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Exciting!!


It's old news, but you never know what will get traction.

All they have to do is bring out the T word -- terrorists.  But it's so much deeper and further from that.  So, yes, you never know what the MSM will go with...  :)

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-06 10:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Exciting!!

Look, I'm not saying it will be justified but given the T-word stuff and the latino-fear crap that is happening now, and that this weds them, I think its something she should worry about.

Out of curiousity why are would these people be considered heroes in PR, is it like the IRA in Belfast and the PLO or Hamas in Gaza? Because given the actions involved they do seem to be terrorists.

by Socraticsilence 2008-03-06 10:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Exciting!!

Being only married to a Puerto Rican, I don't know enough to answer that.  I'll let those qualified answer it.

I believe it all stems from a simple yearning for freedom and/or self-determination.

We took PR in 1898 and before that Spain mostly treated it as a colony with little self-determination at least until the end of Spanish rule.

The fact that after over 500 years of being overseen by outsiders, a basic yearning for freedom and self deterimation exists.

Some would consider the actions to free Vieques of the Navy's bombardment to be treading on terrorist lines.  And then so would those who threw the tea overboard all those years ago.

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-06 10:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Exciting!!

See, and I would get it if FALN had started during the big Vieques tumble (speaking of which would this actually be a place where Sharpton could really help Obama?, he did go to jail for standing up for PR there), but it was in the 80s, heck I could even give them a slight pass on the cop maiming bombing (or at least I could if it hadn't occured at 1 PP) if they gave prior warning like the IRA in the 80s in the UK, but the Wall Street bombing was clearly immoral. Also, PR was never (at least in modern times) in the sort of situation that N. Ireland was in, much less the Gaza/West Bank, this wasn't the Phillipines, or even Cuba in terms of US imperialism and exploitation.

by Socraticsilence 2008-03-07 05:29AM | 0 recs
I don't know that they are considered heros

Maybe the officials treat them that way but I have never got the feeling that the everyday person there cares or in any way admires them.

They are minor figures outside political circles.  Former Miss Universe contestants are a bigger deal for example.

by diplomatic 2008-03-06 10:48PM | 0 recs
Re: I don't know that they are considered heros


I guess that's why this was never on the radar screen in my house.

But, in looking at it now, it appears Hillary initially supported the pardon (along with 10 nobel lauriettes, Jimmy Carter, archbishop of NY among others), but latter came out against them.

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-06 10:55PM | 0 recs
Re: I don't know that they are considered heros

It helped her standing in 2000 in the NY PR community, and since Rudy was believed to be her opponent the corresponding rage from LEOs was politically impotent-- now though it could be an issue, especially if she gets the nomination by winning PR. (You'll her a lot less FALN-ETA comparisons, and a lot more FALN-Al Queda comparisons).

by Socraticsilence 2008-03-07 05:32AM | 0 recs
Puerto Ricans know how to elect a woman!

The governor before the current on was Sila Calderon, a woman who has worked with Hillary Clinton and overall there are many ties with the Clintons and Puerto Rico.

Pedro Rosello is another former Governor who is friendly with the Clintons.

I hope she wins there.

by diplomatic 2008-03-06 08:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Ricans know how to elect a woman!

When I took a tour of the Capitoleo (PR's amazing Capitol building), the tour guide took great pleasure in telling me and pointing to the podium in the PR Senate Chambers where "President Clinton addressed the Puerto Rican people".  Huge smile on her face...

Si, Ella Puede!

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-06 09:02PM | 0 recs
Puerto Rico

If Puerto Rico can just up and change their caucus to a primary on such short notice, there can't be any excuse for the rest of the states not doing so by 2012. The caucuses count this year, but we've learned how low their turnouts are and how convoluted their results can be. We can't go through this kind of thing any more.

by OrangeFur 2008-03-06 10:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico
what? what do you mean convoluted? you mean how obama wins them?
 explain yourself.
 and use logic.
and claiming it's undemocratic because of time won't fly, i know that most caucuses allow sign ins and place holders
by Lazeriath 2008-03-06 11:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico

Ask all the people in Nevada and Texas how great the caucuses were to attend.  They are not democratic and are fraud prone; intimidating.

by mcctx 2008-03-06 11:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico

I'm an Obama supporter and I agree that we should switch to all primaries. It's just some kind of wierd idea the MSM has that caucuses favor Obama.

by GFORD 2008-03-07 05:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico

Isn't Texas a living example of how caucuses favor Senator Obama a big time?

by observer11 2008-03-07 08:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

Puerto Ricans get it-primaries are fairer than caucuses. MI, FL are you listening?

by ann0nymous 2008-03-07 02:29AM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

I don't know if they are fairer but they are less complicated for sure.  However, primaries are a lot more expensive.

by GFORD 2008-03-07 05:59AM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches From A Caucus To A Primar

Simmer down, I was agreeing that primaries are better.

I agree that normally the caucuses only draw the most committed voters.  This year was different because Democrats are much more determined than usual so my state, for example, had a really huge turnout at the caucuses.  But still there were people who couldn't come because they worked shifts.  At the county assembly, some people brought that up and we voted unanimously for the resolution to switch to a primary.  We'll see what happens.

by GFORD 2008-03-07 06:25AM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches

The issue of future island status will determine the winner here. Obama is allied with Rep. Gutierrez (D-ILL) who was born in the island and has communist afiliations- my guess is that Hillary will lean for statehood and will carry the vote.

by RAULC 2008-03-07 05:19AM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches

Didn't the Puerto Rican people reject statehood in a vote within the last 4-5 years?

by Socraticsilence 2008-03-07 05:33AM | 0 recs
Re: Puerto Rico Switches

Yes, but it was close and as long as the island mantains the current status, the issue will be at the forefront. Also, this cycle may represent the best chance of statehood in many generations (IF: Dem. Congress and Statehood island government)- it is supected that part of the reason that the island rejects statehood is because Congress would not grant it- that may change.    

by RAULC 2008-03-07 05:41AM | 0 recs
actually, NO

The last plebecite on status was in 1998 or thereabout when Pedro Rosello was governor.  As a rule, the status quo commonwealth party doesn't fan the flames of statehood or independence with votes.

The outcome was something like 5%independence, 47%statehood, and 48% "none of the above."  The last was added to the ballot when the PDP (Commonwealth) party disagreed with the definition of commonwealth that Rosello (a statehooder) put on the ballot.

Kind of like the idea of voting for none of the above though.  I'd use it on June 1 in Cabo Rojo.

by The lurking ecologist 2008-03-07 06:36PM | 0 recs
Re: actually, NO

What's on the ballot in Cabo Rojo?  Love that area -- have stayed in Lajas..along the 101 a few times.

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-07 08:34PM | 0 recs
Re: actually, NO

On the ballot June 1 is the Democratic primary for President.  On the ballot tomorrow is the primary for all the island parties (guv, senado, rep, etc.).

The PR govt is pretty disfunctional right now. Both parties have morphed into personality cults.  It reminds me of Animal Farm.  Some PNPs (or Populares) are more equal than others.  None of the above would be an excellent choice.

Since my top 3 candidates are out in the Dem primary, and I'm satisfied but not particularly thrilled with the two remaining, "None of the above" would be a good choice for me on June 1 too, if it exists.

Based on Iowa, I guess about 25% of the Democratic Party electorate might agree with me.

But you're right about Cabo Rojo.  It is a wonderful place to live.

by The lurking ecologist 2008-03-08 05:02AM | 0 recs
It's crazy.

I'm not really too worried.  I think the DNC (Howard Dean rocks) and the SD's are as sick of losing to the republicans as the rest of us are.  Deans knows the 50-state strategy is a winner.      

by GFORD 2008-03-07 06:33AM | 0 recs
My Morning PR "Poll" LOL!

We had an early morning wake-up call from Bayamon and got to ask the family about the new development.

There is so much excitement. It's unbelievable there will be polling places in every little town throughout the island.  We had to convince my suegra (mother in law) that she could vote and explain it was only the primary.

Well, my two sisters-in-law are all for Hillary and my suegra is so excited she said she's going to have to close her eyes and pick one! She can't decide.

The family is equally energized and excited about both candidates.

by Si Ella Puede 2008-03-07 09:02AM | 0 recs


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