SAN JUAN (Reuters) – Puerto Rico’s next governor remained up in the air on Thursday, just 24 hours before Governor Ricardo Rosselló was due to resign, as the U.S. territory’s Senate pushed a vote on his successor to Monday.
Rosselló, who is set to leave office at 5 p.m. ET (2100 GMT) on Friday, tapped lawyer Pedro Pierluisi to be secretary of state, pending confirmation by the legislature, and first in line to succeed him as governor.
Puerto - Rico - Senate - President - Thomas
But Puerto Rico Senate President Thomas Rivera Schatz said Pierluisi’s role as an attorney advising the widely-disliked financial oversight board directing Puerto Rico’s bankruptcy presented conflicts of interests and made him unacceptable.
“Pedro Pierluisi does not have the vote of the majority,” Schatz said in a fiery speech. “The lawyer for Puerto Rico’s number one enemy can’t be in charge of Puerto Rico.”
Chamber - Pierluisi - Monday - House - Nomination
His chamber agreed to hear from Pierluisi on Monday, while the House is scheduled to vote on the nomination on Friday, making it more likely that Justice Secretary Wanda Vázquez, the second in line for governor, would take office.
Vázquez, who previously said she did not want the position, tweeted on Thursday that if the time comes, she would assume the governorship.
Speaker - Puerto - Rico - House - Representatives
The speaker of Puerto Rico’s House of Representatives, Carlos Méndez, told reporters that Pierluisi could still become governor in the event his chamber fails to vote on or confirms the nomination during a Friday session. If the House votes against Pierluisi as expected,...
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