On Thursday, the US House voted 233-191 to approve a bill that will allow Puerto Rico — a US territory — to hold its first-ever binding referendum to determine the governmental status of the island.
The bill gives Puerto Ricans three options for consideration: statehood, independence, or independence with free association with the US.
Puerto Ricans must be given the right to determine their future. The island has been under US colonial rule for over 100 years — stuck in limbo with neither independence nor statehood, and it's time this changes. While this bill is a step in the right direction, it likely won't be the deciding factor in this debate, which is why the US must commit to a status change one way or another.
Thankfully, this bill has little to no chance of passing in the Senate, but it's still important to note the true sentiment behind the push to get it through Congress. Under the guise of acting in Puerto Ricans' best interests, the power-hungry Democrats are looking to buy favor and are willing to go as far as creating an entirely new voting block to do so.
There's a 39% chance that Puerto Rico will become a US State by 2035, according to the Metaculus prediction community.