Leading figures of Puerto Rico gov’s party ask him to resign, avoid impeachment
Former Gov. Fortuño and Bayamón
Mayor Rivera Cruz publish requests
SAN JUAN – Several leading figures of Puerto Rico’s majority New Progressive Party went public Thursday with calls for Gov. Ricardo Rosselló to resign and avoid an impeachment process.
Former Gov. Luis Fortuño asked the sitting governor to step aside via an open letter he posted on Twitter.
“I call upon the Governor. The future of PR is at stake and his figure makes it impossible to move on to the new chapter of our history,” Fortuño wrote, adding that his stance of remaining in office “makes this process more difficult for everyone. For you, your family, our ideal and PR, let someone else finish your term.”
In a statement of his own, Bayamón Mayor Ramón Luis Rivera Cruz demanded the governor’s resignation before an impeachment inquiry occurs.
“We recognize that during these two years you have had many achievements, to the benefit of all Puerto Ricans.
“Unfortunately, what has recently taken place changes the scenario and dramatically limits your effectiveness to govern, as well as the government’s performance. This affects the economy and consequently the people. In fact, we are already living the first glimpses.
“I have no doubt that in your heart you want to achieve the best for Puerto Rico, but in these circumstances, it is almost impossible. On the other hand, exposing oneself to an impeachment process would add even more to this paralysis, because of the time it takes, producing greater anguish” for everyone, Rivera Cruz said.
“End this unease and allow an orderly transition. The people will thank you,” the mayor added.
For her part, Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González Colón tweeted Thursday that the party’s board needed an “an urgent meeting” to discuss the situation.
Rosselló, however, reiterated Thursday morning that he would remain in power.
“My family and I, as well as the people of Puerto Rico, are fully aware of the demonstrations that took place yesterday throughout the afternoon and evening. It had widespread participation, which I respect not only as an exercise in democracy, but also as a natural manifestation of frustrations resulting from recent events.
“The clear majority of participants demonstrated properly, while a few decided to utilize improper and violent methods that included the use of firearms, Molotov cocktails and other explosives, causing injuries and striking Puerto Rico Police officers. This affront to law and order will be addressed accordingly.
“Over the past few days I have come forward to face the people of Puerto Rico and beg for forgiveness. I continue to reiterate that plead. I am more committed than ever to pushing forth the public policy agenda that we have been working so hard to implement in all areas of government. I recognize the enormous challenge I have before me due to the recent controversies, but I firmly believe that we can restore trust and, after this painful and shameful process, achieve reconciliation,” the governor said in a statement issued Thursday.