Héctor Ferrer and Carmen Yulín file candidacies for top PDP roles
SAN JUAN — Former Rep. Héctor Ferrer officially announced Tuesday his candidacy to preside the Popular Democratic Party (PDP).
“It would be an honor for me to preside the Popular [Democratic] Party, and that is why I have filed my candidacy to preside the party,” Ferrer said after the announcement.
Likewise, San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz announced her candidacy for one of the party’s two presidencies, which correspond to a woman.
“I will aspire to the Popular Party’s vice presidency with Héctor Ferrer’s support. And we do it knowing the task ahead with the party’s reorganization. This is a great alliance,” Cruz said after announcing she will complete the candidacy Wednesday, after filing remaining documents.
Ferrer reiterated his friendship with the San Juan mayor in an effort to hinder differences among them as possible adversaries.
Former governor and former PDP president Aníbal Acevedo Vilá also suggested the possibility of running for his party’s presidency but hasn’t filed for the candidacy yet.
Ferrer presided the party between 2009 and 2011 and people were certain he would be the party’s gubernatorial candidate in the 2012 general elections, but internal surveys in the PDP favored then-Sen. Alejandro García Padilla, who defeated then-Gov. Luis Fortuño in a tight electoral race.
Some PDP officials were surprised by Ferrer and Cruz’s decision to file their respective candidacies together at PDP headquarters in Puerta de Tierra, since both officials could face each other in the summer of 2018 for the party’s gubernatorial candidacy.
The PDP will celebrate an assembly with the General Council on Feb. 26 to fill six vacant spots in its governing board as part of its reorganization process ahead of the 2020 general elections.
In the assembly, council members will select officials to occupy the presidency, second vice presidency, an at-large member, and three district representatives (Ponce, Guayama, and Carolina).
Up until now, Caguas Mayor William Miranda and Rep. Ángel Matos have filed their respective candidacies for accumulation.
Ferrer said that Carolina Mayor José Aponte Dalmau will aim for a spot in the Governing Board for the Carolina District.
Aiming to represent the Ponce District is Peñuelas Mayor Walter Torres. Meanwhile, Juana Díaz’s electoral commissioner, Jesús Torres, and Guayama Mayor Eduardo Cintrón hope to represent the Guayama District on the board.
Former Senate President Eduardo Bhatia has asked possible applicants to avoid aiming for the PDP presidency during the party’s reorganization process if they intend to run for governor in the 2020 elections.
“This limit’s some people’s participation because they believe that whoever presides will take advantage of their post to organize their political structure,” he said.
PDP Secretary-General Javier Echevarría explained that it is up to the general council, composed of about 560 people, to make the election in February 26 in the Ernesto Ramos Antonini theater, in Barceloneta.