Monday, September 21, 2020

Resident Commissioner touts manufacturing resolution added to Republican platform

By on August 24, 2020

Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González Colón (Courtesy)

RNC adopts proposal to bring pharma industry back to US as federal public policy

SAN JUAN — On the eve of the 2020 Republican National Convention, Puerto Rico’s resident commissioner in Washington, D.C. and chairwoman of the Republican Party on the island, Jenniffer González Colón, celebrated the decision of the Rules & Resolutions Committee of the Republican National Committee (RNC) to include as part of the party’s platform the proposal to establish as federal public policy efforts to bring medical manufactures back to the United States. 

The measure, titled Resolution Urging the United States Congress to End China’s Monopoly Control Over the United States Medicine Supply Chain, was approved during the 2020 Summer Meeting, ahead of the convention, which starts Monday, Aug. 24, with the formal re-nomination of Donald Trump and Mike Pence as the Republican presidential and vice-presidential candidates, respectively.  

The resolution argues that the volume of medicine produced in China has created an unwanted dependency on the country and that the move to bring the pharmaceutical industry back would “create thousands of jobs” in the United States.. 

The conclusion of the resolution reads: “RESOLVED, That the Republican National Committee urges the establishment of a timeline to reduce or phase out American-dependence on any foreign source of medicine as soon as practicable, and hastens the return and reestablishment of a robust pharmaceutical industry in the United States.”

Although the resolution points to the reestablishment of the industry, in a press release González Colón argued that Puerto Rico in particular could benefit from it. 

“The White House, Congress and now the Republican Party at the national level are supporting ensuring the national chain of medical supplies, going hand in hand with my initiative, which I have led since before the pandemic, to label pharmaceutical companies as a national security issue,” the resident commissioner said.

González continued: “With these expressions, the President’s Executive Order, the visits of White House delegations to the island, the filing of two bills of my authorship and supporting others as co-authors, we are creating a united front in an initiative in which Puerto Rico has the attributes to lead the way and, eventually, become a national manufacturing hub to the benefit of workers and the local economy.”

González was referencing a visit from Peter Navarro, whose position at the White House is assistant to the president and director of the Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy. On Aug. 20, Navarro posted a picture on Twitter of him and a team of people in Puerto Rico and the caption alluded to bringing pharmaceutical companies to the island. 

The 2020 RNC Summer Meeting was held in Charlotte, North Carolina, where the convention is set to start the three-night event at 9 p.m., with the 336 delegates from the states and territories expected to confirm the Republican presidential ticket. 

The chairman of the Puerto Rico delegation is Kevin Romero, who is accompanied by businessman John Regis and José Carrión, the outgoing chairman of the Puerto Rico Financial Oversight and Management Board and a member of the Latinos for Trump board.

The RNCC’s Rules & Resolution Committee decided that it would adopt the same platform as in 2016, including the party’s stance on Puerto Rico’s status. 

“We support the right of the United States citizens of Puerto Rico to be admitted to the Union as a fully sovereign state,” the resolution reads. “We support the federally sponsored political status referendum authorized and funded by an Act of Congress in 2014 to ascertain the aspirations of the people of Puerto Rico. Once the 2012 local vote for statehood is ratified, Congress should approve an enabling act with terms for Puerto Rico’s future admission as the 51st state of the Union.”