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Subcommittee Reviews Relationship Between Puerto Rico’s Economic Crisis and Political Status

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 24, 2015 - Today, the Subcommittee on Indian, Insular and Alaska Native Affairs heard from witnesses representing all of Puerto Rico’s political parties during a hearing to review the relationship between the current economic crisis gripping the island and the unresolved issue of political status. 
“Changes to Puerto Rico’s political status will ultimately be made by its citizens, but this Committee has an obligation to monitor developments, especially given the significant economic challenges facing the island. I want to thank all of today's witnesses for taking the time to offer their views, and Subcommittee Chairman Young for his continued work on these important matters,” stated Full Committee Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT). 
“Today we continue the discussion on the issue of Puerto Rico’s political status, an important discussion given the current economic crisis the island finds itself in," Subcommittee Chairman Don Young (R-AK) stated during the hearing. “A discussion of political status for the island always sparks lively debate from within Puerto Rico and among my colleagues here in Congress and on the Committee.  I anticipate the same here today, and I welcome it; such spirited debate is healthy.”

The full witness list and testimony can be found here and below. 

Panel I

The Honorable Pedro R. Pierluisi
Resident Commissioner of Puerto Rico
President of New Progressive Party (PNP)
Washington, D.C.

The Honorable César A. Miranda Rodríguez
Attorney General of Puerto Rico
Testifying on behalf of Governor Alejandro García Padilla
San Juan, PR

The Honorable Rubén Berríos
Former Senator in the Puerto Rican Senate 
President of the Puerto Rico Independence Party (PIP)
San Juan, PR

Panel II

The Honorable Luis G. Fortuño
Former Governor of Puerto Rico, 2009-2011 (PNP) 
Washington, D.C.

The Honorable Carlos Romero Barceló
Former Governor of Puerto Rico, 1977-1985 (PNP)
San Juan, PR

The Honorable Aníbal Acevedo Vilá
Former Governor of Puerto Rico, 2005-2009 (PPD)
San Juan, PR

The Honorable Carmen Yulín Cruz Soto
Mayor of San Juan, 2013-Present (PPD)
San Juan, PR

Ms. Miriam J. Ramirez MD
Former Puerto Rico State Senator, 2001-2004 (PNP)
Founder, Puerto Ricans in Civic Action
Orlando, FL

Contact: Committee Press Office 202-226-9019

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