Tom Murse is a previous political reporter and current managing Editor the daily document "LNP," and weekly political paper "The Caucus," both published by LNP Media in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

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Voters in Puerto Rico and other U.S. Territories are not allowed to vote in the presidential choice under the provisions collection forth in the Electoral College. But they do have a to speak in who gets come the White House. That's because voters in Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, and American Samoa are permitted to take part in the presidential primary and also are granted delegates by the two significant political parties.

In various other words, Puerto Rico and the various other U.S. Territories obtain to help nominate the presidential candidates. Yet voters over there cannot actually take part in the election itself because of the Electoral college system.

deserve to Puerto Ricans Vote?

Why can"t voter in Puerto Rico and also the other U.S. Territories help elect the president of the unified States? write-up II, section 1 that the U.S. Constitution renders it clear that just states deserve to participate in the electoral process. The U.S. Structure reads:

"Each State candlestick appoint, in together Manner together the legislative thereof may direct, a number of Electors, equal to the whole number of Senators and Representatives come which the State may be licensed has been granted in the Congress."
"The Electoral College device does not carry out for citizens of U.S. Regions (Puerto Rico, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, north Mariana Islands, American Samoa, and the U.S. Minor far Islands) to poll for President."

The only means citizens the the U.S. Territories can participate in the presidential elections is if they have actually official residency in the unified States and vote by absentee ballot or travel to your state to vote.

This disenfranchisement or rejection of the appropriate to vote in nationwide elections—including presidential elections—also applies to U.S. Citizens residents in Puerto Rico or any type of of the other U.S. Unincorporated territories. Return the committees that both the Republican and also Democratic parties in Puerto Rico pick voting delegates to the parties’ nationwide presidential nominating conventions and also state presidential primaries or caucuses, U.S. Citizens life in Puerto Rico or the other territories cannot poll in federal elections uneven they additionally maintain a legal voting residence in one of the 50 says or the district of Columbia.

Puerto Rico and also the primary

Even though voter in Puerto Rico and also other U.S. Regions can't vote in the November election, the Democratic and also Republican Parties enable them to pick delegates to stand for them at the nominating conventions.

The national democratic Party"s charter, spread in 1974 and amended in 2018, states that Puerto Rico "shall be treated together a state containing the appropriate variety of Congressional Districts." The Republican Party also allows voters in Puerto Rico and also other U.S. Areas to get involved in the nomination process.

In the 2020 democratic presidential primary, Puerto Rico had actually 51 delegates based upon its populace of 3.194 million people.  Twenty-two states had actually fewer delegates: Iowa, brand-new Hampshire, Nevada, Arkansas, Maine, Oklahoma, Utah, Vermont, Idaho, Mississippi, phibìc Datoka, Alaska, Wyoming, Kansas, Nebraska, Hawaii, Montana, new Mexico, Rhode Island, southern Dakota, West Virginia, and Delaware.

Seven democratic delegates checked out Guam and also the Virgin Islands and also six to American Samoa. In the 2020 Republican presidential primary, Puerto Rico had actually 23 delegates. Guam, American Samoa, and the Virgin islands each had actually nine.

What room the us Territories?

A are is an area ofland the is administered by the United says government yet not officially claimed by any kind of of the 50 says or any type of other civilization nation. Most depend on the United says for defense and also economic support. Puerto Rico, for example, is a commonwealth—a self-governed, unincorporated region of the unified States. Its residents are subject to U.S. Laws and pay revenue taxes to the U.S. Government.

The joined States at this time has 16 territories, of which only 5 are permanently inhabited: Puerto Rico, Guam, northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and also American Samoa. Classified as unincorporated territories, they room organized, self-governing territories with governors and territorial legislatures chosen by the people. Every of the five permanently lived in territories may also elect a non-voting delegate or resident commissioner to the U.S. House of Representatives.

The ar resident commissioners or delegates function in the same means as members of conference from the 50 states, except that they are not allowed to poll on the final disposition of law on the house floor. However, castle are permitted to serve on congressional committees and also receive the same yearly salary as other rank-and-file members of Congress.

Statehood because that Puerto Rico?

Puerto Rico statehood has been a topic of debate among the island territory’s citizens for decades. Come date, Puerto Rico has held six non-binding referendums addressing statehood, however no official decision has actually been made.

The divided opinion top top statehood was evident in the many recent vote, carried out on Nov. 3, 2020, as soon as 52% of Puerto Rico’s inhabitants voted for statehood, when 47% of citizens voted versus it.

Introduced by Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-New York) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York), the Puerto Rico Self-Determination act would contact for regional legislatures chosen by the Puerto Rican civilization to host statehood condition convention. Delegates come the convention would be responsible because that finding a irreversible solution for the island’s territorial status.

Taking the an ext direct route, the Puerto Rico Statehood join Act, introduced by the island’s resident commissioner, Jenniffer Gonzalez (R-Puerto Rico) and congressman, Daren Soto (D-Florida) would simply incorporate Puerto Rico into the Union as the 51st state.

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Murse, Tom. "Why Puerto Rico matters in the us Presidential Election.", May. 5, 2021,, Tom. (2021, might 5). Why Puerto Rico matters in the united state Presidential Election. Retrieved indigenous, Tom. "Why Puerto Rico problem in the us Presidential Election." Https:// (accessed December 13, 2021).