Puerto Rico Ruling Party Head Gets Key Backing to Be Governor
(Bloomberg) -- The head of Puerto Rico’s ruling New Progressive Party, Senate President Thomas Rivera Schatz, just got a critical endorsement to become the island’s next governor.
Lawmaker Jorge Navarro Suarez, who heads the governance commission in the lower house that’s in charge of confirming nominees, said he supported Rivera Schatz to fill the vacant secretary of state cabinet position, according to a video interview shared by Jay Fonseca, of the Puerto Rican TV news program “Jay y sus Rayos X.”
The next secretary of state is in line to become governor when Ricardo Rossello steps down Friday. Rossello pledged to resign after leaked chats showed him and his inner circle making misogynistic and homophobic comments, and his last secretary of state left as the scandal was breaking.
It wasn’t immediately clear if Rivera Schatz’s nomination and confirmation -- both still hypothetical -- would do anything to calm the popular fury sweeping the island. Indeed, it could possibly intensify protests: Rivera Schatz has been involved in the ruling party’s politics for some 25 years. His career took off after former Governor Pedro Rossello, the outgoing governor’s father, picked him as a prosecutor for the local Justice Department.
Tens of thousands of Puerto Ricans took to the street in weeks past to demand Rossello’s ouster.
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