Carlos Romero Barceló was one of Puerto Rico's most prominent and polarizing political figures. Within the context of Puerto Rican Politics, he was a member of the New Progressive Party. In regards to federal American politics, he was a Democrat.

Romero Barceló would hold a number of the territory's most powerful political offices. He became known as a vigorous proponent of Puerto Rico becoming a U.S. state, indicates MSN and NBC. A goal that, as it turns out, did not come to pass during Romero Barceló's lifetime.

Died on May 2, 2021

Carlos Romero Barceló passed away on May 2.

His family made the announcement two days later. The exact cause of death apparently wasn't confirmed. But several weeks before his death, it was made known that his health was in a serious state. He'd been left weakened by a urinary tract infection and sepsis, NBC News reported.

Since 2017, Romero Barceló had been a shadow senator for Puerto Rico. The role doesn't necessarily have a defined role, and holders don't officially participate as part of the U.S. Congress. But they can promote and advocate for positions regarding their territory. Historically, the role has tended to be used to make a push for a territory to become a state.

In the past, Romero Barceló did hold Puerto Rico's sole Congressional seat.

He was the territory's resident commissioner from 1993 to 2001. He got his political start decades before, including being one of the New Progressive Party's founding members. In 1968, he was elected as mayor of San Juan, Puerto Rico's most populous city and capital. Romero Barcelo won re-election as mayor once before being defeated in 1976 by Governor Rafael Hernandez Colon.

Though he lost his mayoral race, Romero Barceló won the gubernatorial race in Puerto Rico in the same year. During his first term, he became entangled with a scandal involving police and two deaths. Even still, Romero Barceló won a second term in 1980, albeit in a controversial election. Economic issues would mar his second term.

At one point, unemployment among Puerto Ricans was listed as a whopping 25 percent.

Romero Barceló lost his 1984 re-election bid as governor to Hernandez Colon. In 1986, the New Progressive Party selected him for a vacant seat of the Senate of Puerto Rico. He did not run for re-election in 1988. Rather, he returned to private life as a practicing attorney.

Was a member of the prominent political family

Antonio Rafael Barceló was Carlos' grandfather. He would become a member and president of the Senate of Puerto Rico. Josefina Barceló Bird de Romero, Antonio's daughter, and Carlos' mother was also active in politics. Including as president of the Liberal Party of Puerto Rico. Melinda Romero Donnelly, Carlos' daughter, was a member of both the House of Representatives and the Senate of Puerto Rico.

The future politician was educated at Phillips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire and followed by Yale University and the University of Puerto Rico School of Law. He married Kate Donnelly in early 1966.