When Ricardo Rosello was running for the office of Governor of Puerto Rico, one of his campaign promises was to seek statehood for the island of Puerto Rico. He was subsequently elected into office in January, and now it's June and he is living up to his promise. On June 11, the prospect of statehood was put to vote for the people of Puerto Rico. 23% of the population turned out to the polls, and of those people 97% voted to pursue statehood. Becoming a state would help the island of Puerto Rico weather the storm of it's current economic crisis.

Their current state of being

The Government of the island has stated that they will be unable to meet their $72 billion debt obligations and are exploring all options to fix the problem. Many say that this economic crisis is partially due to their status in between independence and full statehood. This in between status gives them no back-up from a major Federal Government in the case of a crisis. This economic crisis on the island has led to many serious situations for its citizens. The island is looking at major government deficits across the board, huge cutbacks in public assistance, an increase in utility rates, and all the other damaging things that come with an economic recession. They also have an unemployment rate of almost 12%.

Statehood seems to be a legitimate answer to these problems.

How becoming a state will help and change them forever

If Puerto Rico were to become a state, they would gain the same rights as all the other 50 states of the United States of America. This would also give them the same economic support states can receive when they are having economic issues.

This would give them bankruptcy protections available to help bail them out of their debt and also they would be able to receive Federal spending money to help boost their economy. With the state that Puerto Rico is in, becoming a state would change and improve life for the small island nation.

If statehood is granted by Congress, Puerto Rico would instantly become the 51St State.

They would be allowed to vote in all Federal elections and elect representatives to represent them in Congress. They would be given full access to public assistance and would pay federal and state income taxes. But, just because they voted to pursue statehood, doesn't necessarily mean it's inevitable.

Why Puerto Rico might not become the newest state in the Union

At the end of the day, The United States Congress has the final say in whether or not Puerto Rico will be added to the Union with full rights. In the Republican controlled Congress, they wouldn't want to add a Democratic-leaning state like Puerto Rico because it could threaten their control. Also, one of the campaign promises of the Republicans was to cut spending across the board and this couldn't happen if they were to add a new state.

It would cost a lot of money to get Puerto Rico up to par as a state.

Only time will tell if we are going to add a new star to our iconic flag. Unfortunately, it will come down to how can the Republicans benefit from adding Puerto Rico and not how can they help a territory that is already a territory of the U.S.A..