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THE ASSOCIATED PRESS POLITICAL SERVICE
Puerto Rico Must Ultimately Choose Between Statehood
November 20, 1998
Copyright 1998. The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) - Just 23 days before Puerto Ricans
vote on the island's political future, Sen. Robert Torricelli
said Friday that Puerto Rico must ultimately choose between statehood
The question is not whether Congress will approve statehood
but whether it will allow the current commonwealth status to continue,
Torricelli said at a news conference with Puerto Rico Gov. Pedro
Rossello and Perth Amboy Mayor Joseph Vas, who was born in Puerto
Rico and has family there.
The Democratic senator from New Jersey said the elimination
in 1996 of a key federal tax break for U.S. corporations with
operations in Puerto Rico was the beginning of the end for commonwealth
On Dec. 13, voters will choose between four status definitions
that describe statehood , independence, free association and the
current commonwealth status . But the political party supporting
commonwealth has urged its followers to vote "none of the
above" to protest Congress' definition of commonwealth.