Argument: Puerto Rico would burden US welfare system
- Debate: Puerto Rico statehood in America - con argument.
English First. "Statehood for Puerto Rico - Why it is a bad idea.": "Puerto Rican Statehood and the Budget Deficit. The unemployed in Puerto Rico will at least have higher welfare benefits to fall back on if statehood is granted, meaning more money lost to the U.S. treasury. Even with the gain to the U.S. Treasury of taxes now not being paid by Section 936 companies, the CBO put the cost of Puerto Rican statehood as $9.4 billion in the first four years. These costs do not include matters like government and court translation expenses should Puerto Rico declare itself to be a solely Spanish-speaking land. Nor does it include the costs to the U.S. Treasury of as many as seven representatives and two Senators whose continuance in office will depend on their pleasing an impoverished constituency. Legislation to increase federal spending on social programs of all sorts need not fail narrowly in either house of the U.S. Congress if Puerto Rico's delegation (twice the size of West Virginia's) enters the equation. Clearly neither the United States nor Puerto Rico can afford Puerto Rican statehood."
Carlos Romero-Barcelo, Statehood is for the Poor, page 79: "If it were a state, Puerto Rico would be absolutely assured of enormous amounts of federal money--money the island needs in order to come to grips with its many problems. But without statehood, such large quantities of money are going to be increasingly hard to come by."