Puerto Rico's Senate leader rejects lawyer Pierluisi as next governor

Mail Online | 8/1/2019 | Associated Press;Adry Torres For Dailymail.com
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Puerto Rico's government remained in full-blown crisis Thursday when the United States territory's Senate leader stopped short of confirming the nominee to the secretary of state vacancy who would then succeed departing Governor Ricardo Rosselló on Friday.

The nomination of Pedro Pierluisi was delayed into next Monday.

Rosselló - Resignation - Effect - Friday - Veteran

Rosselló, whose resignation goes into effect at 5pm Friday, had named veteran politician and attorney as his successor by nominating him to the position of secretary of state, the next in line as governor under the U.S. territory's constitution.

Pierluisi is a former representative to the U.S. Congress who is seen by most ordinary Puerto Ricans as a conciliatory, relatively uncontroversial figure, unlikely to be met by continued street demonstrations over poor governance and corruption.

Pierluisi - Gaggle - Reporters - Thomas - Rivera

'All of this will be legally analyzed,' Pierluisi said as he pushed through a gaggle of reporters after Thomas Rivera Schatz announced that a public hearing will be held on Monday.

'I'll be there,' Pierluisi said. 'I'll have the opportunity to express myself and answer all questions. ... I offered to take a step forward for Puerto Rico at this moment given my love for my country. ... My only loyalty as governor if I have the support of legislators is to the people of Puerto Rico.

Pierluisi - Rosselló - Successor

Since Pierluisi has not yet been confirmed, it was not immediately clear who would be Rosselló's successor.

Since there isn't a secretary of state in place, the position would then pass to the next in line, Justice Secretary Wanda Vázquez, who said last Sunday that she doesn't want the job.

Puerto - Rico - Office - Government - Ethics

Puerto Rico's Office of Government Ethics confirmed to DailyMail on July 25 that it's reviewing claim that Vázquez refuse to probe mishandling of hurricane aid in 2018.

On Thursday afternoon, Vázquez tweeted that she wasn't anywhere near close to stepping down from her post.


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