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Author: Alexander Chang

Outcome of 2016 Latinx vote remains disputed

President-Elect Donald Trump’s campaign rhetoric alienated many latinxs, leading many to predict that he would net an all time low percentage of the demographic.   However, exit polls tell a different story.  A CNN poll showed Trump’s latinx vote share at 27% percent; the New York Times exit poll showed Trump’s performance two points higher at 29%.  These statistics were surprising to many observers– a 27% showing would match Mitt Romney’s 2012 performance, while winning 29% would put Trump ahead of the former nominee.   Republican candidates have traditionally struggled with latinx voters.  George W. Bush’s popular vote victory...

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Carbon emerges as big winner of 2016

Rudy Giuliani removed himself cabinet contention.  Chris Christie was strong-armed out of his own transition; Mike Flynn’s son was fired for his embrace of Pizzagate.   But there’s one big winner of Transition 2017: carbon.   Fossil fuel enthusiasts are thrilled by President-elect Trump, a candidate who claimed climate change was “a hoax” and promised to obliterate President Obama’s environmental regulations.  The nomination of Scott Pruitt, Oklahoma’s Attorney General, was a particularly big coup for the industry.  Pruitt has emerged as one of the top opponents of EPA regulations, taking the Obama Administration to court numerous times.  Pruitt has...

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Ricardo Rosselló makes first cabinet nominations

Puerto Rican Governor-elect Ricardo Rosselló has made the first moves to staff his cabinet, early decisions that will define the direction of his administration.  The Governor-elect faces many challenges– he must offer economic relief to the cash-strapped islands, and navigate the complicated relationship with politicians in Washington. Roselló tapped William Villafañe as his Chief of Staff and Itza M. Garcia Rodriguez as Assistant Chief of Staff.  The two will be responsible for saving the islands’ finances and implementing the Governor-elect’s “Plan for Puerto Rico”.  Most urgently, Puerto Rico risks running out of cash in just 90 days. The Governor-elect...

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Popular Democratic Party retains control of majority of Puerto Rico mayorships

Election night in Puerto Rico featured a strong showing from the New Progressives.  Heading into 2017, the party controls the islands’ governor’s mansion, resident commissioner seat, and majorities in both houses of the legislature.  Despite the NPP’s widespread victories, however, the Popular Democratic Party won the majority of municipalities, winning 45 of Puerto Rico’s 78. Experts say this divergence this is largely because this election cycle likely saw ticket splitting, with voters choosing different parties for up and down ballot candidates.  They point to a significant gap between votes for mayors and votes for the winning governor as an...

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NPP soars to victory in legislative elections

In Tuesday’s Legislative Elections, Puerto Rico’s New Progressive Party scored resounding victories, establishing large majorities in both houses of the body.  The NPP clinched 11 “at large” and 14 district seats in the Senate of Puerto Rico.  They made similarly impressive gains in the House, winning 13 seats.  On Wednesday, the new Senate appointed Thomas Rivera Schatz to lead the body.  NPP Senator Larry Seilhamer will serve as Vice President. In the Puerto Rico House of Representatives, Johnny Mendez was confirmed as the next leader of the body, replacing disgraced representative and former speaker Jaime Perelló, who came under...

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