Governor expects Puerto Rico to stalemate federal budget debate
Urged Senate minority leader to consider Puerto Rico funding requests when voting
SAN JUAN – Gov. Ricardo Rosselló Nevares said Wednesday that the issue of Puerto Rico will become a stalemate in the discussion of the U.S. budget.
“I hope it is. I have asked [Senate Minority] leader [Chuck] Schumer, and he has committed to that, if there are no resources for Puerto Rico, [Democrats] won’t pass any of the [budget] bills, and I think that is imperative so the issue of Puerto Rican can be seen,” Rosselló said at a press conference.
“I hope that [if his position] is that there are a number of considerations here, they have to do them, and that Puerto Rico is one of those considerations and I think that is of benefit for us,” he added.
In his draft budget, President Trump proposes, among other things, substantial cuts to several agencies that deal with the environment, as well as funds destined for Medicare and Medicaid. In addition, it increases the Defense budget and requests $8.5 billion for the construction of a physical border with Mexico.
Democratic lawmakers have said that if the aid for Puerto Rico and requests for additional funds are not included in the budget proposals, they will not be passed.
If a congressional agreement on the budget is not reached, the federal government faces the possibility of another shutdown.