Democrats and the media routinely assailed President Donald Trump’s harsh assessments of Puerto Rico’s government after it was walloped by two devastating hurricanes in 2017, acting as though there was nothing wrong in Puerto Rico and that its leaders were beyond reproach.
But now the island territory is wracked with a massive public corruption scandal the media can’t ignore — one that even has Democrats who formerly defended its leaders now demanding the resignations of many, including that of embattled Gov. Ricardo Rosselló, who just indicated that his remaining time in office will be short-lived.
The Hill reported that Gov. Rosselló announced on Sunday that he will not resign his office, despite mounting demands that he do so.
However, the governor also declared that he will not seek re-election in 2020 and will be stepping down from his role as president of the New Progressive Party that maintains political control of the island.
The demands for Rosselló’s resignation began after several top officials in his administration were arrested and charged with crimes related to allegations that they corruptly steered millions of dollars of hurricane recovery funds into the hands of favored contractors and friends, no doubt lining their own pockets with kickbacks along the way.
Problems for Rosselló were compounded when hundreds of texts and private group chat messages involving him and members of his administration were released to the public, many of which included homophobic, misogynistic, and otherwise offensive remarks aimed at the media, political rivals, celebrities, and even the Puerto Rican people themselves who suffered greatly from the hurricanes.
Accepting his fate
Rosselló took to social media on Sunday for a Facebook Live video in which he said, “A huge portion of the population is unhappy and I recognize it.”
“I’ve heard you, I love the island and people,” he continued. “Today I have the responsibility to direct my strengths to try to find alternatives so that with God we may be able to move forward.”
He added: “I’m going to be looking forward to turning over power to the person elected democratically.”
Vindication for Trump
While the fact that Rosselló won’t be running for re-election and will step down as leader of his leftist party elicited cheers from some of the protesters demanding his ouster, most still want to see him gone long before the 2020 election comes around. In fact, the demands for his resignation have persisted and there is even some serious talk among Puerto Rican politicians of starting the impeachment process with the hopes of removing him from office.
The governor may try to wait out the raucous opposition that has mounted against him and the rest of his demonstrably corrupt and deceitful administration, but those demanding his imminent ouster — now egged on by duplicitous Democrats and the media — may not be patient enough to wait for him to walk away at the end of his term.
Regardless, Trump’s prescient criticism of Rosselló and other Puerto Rican officials as corrupt has been proven correct, and though the Democrats and media will be hard-pressed to ever admit it, the president has once again been vindicated when all others claimed he was wrong.