Val Demings Urges Congressional Action Addressing Puerto Rico’s Financial Future

Val-Demings-webChief Val Demings is weighing in on Puerto Rico’s financial crisis, calling on Congress to pass legislation allowing Puerto Rico to declare Chapter 9 bankruptcy. The former Orlando Police Chief is running in Florida’s new 10th Congressional district and currently faces a Democratic primary battle against State Senator Geraldine Thompson, Bob Poe, and Fatima Fahmy.

The island is more than $70 billion in debt and recently defaulted on bond payments. Puerto Rico has been in the midst of a brutal recession for nearly a decade, with more than 45 percent of the people in Puerto Rico living in poverty, according to reports. The economic crisis has gotten so bad natives are fleeing to the mainland in record numbers, many of them settling in Central Florida. An average of 1,000 Puerto Ricans are arriving in Florida each month.

“I urge Congress to pass legislation allowing Puerto Rico to declare Chapter 9 bankruptcy, the same right already extended to entities within the mainland U.S.,” Chief Demings said in her statement of support for Puerto Rico.

Hillary Clinton has promised to assist Puerto Rico within the first 100 days of her presidency. Clinton described the Republican-led Congress’ treatment of the island as “a grave injustice” in the Democratic debate earlier this month. But Clinton insisted Puerto Ricans must make the final decision on their financial future themselves. She issued a statement saying “that question needs to be resolved in accordance with the expressed will of our fellow citizens, the people of Puerto Rico.” Senator Bernie Sanders also backs a bailout, stating on the record that the commonwealth “should be afforded the same bankruptcy protections that exist for municipalities across the United States.”

Chief Demings ended her statement with a similar tone. “I stand with the Puerto Rican community of Central Florida to urge this swift action on behalf of millions of our fellow Americans,” Demings said.

Here is her full statement:

In less than two weeks, Congress will address the issue of Puerto Rico’s financial future. I urge Congress to pass legislation allowing Puerto Rico to declare Chapter 9 bankruptcy, the same right already extended to entities within the mainland U.S.

I stand with the Puerto Rican community of Central Florida to urge this swift action on behalf of millions of our fellow Americans.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.