• The Star Staff

PDP governing board wants to resume primary on Thursday

By The Star Staff

The members of the Popular Democratic Party (PDP) governing board on Monday approved several determinations on the primaries that were paralyzed Sunday.

“The first, to demand that the governor [Wanda Vázquez Garced] call an extraordinary assembly to repeal the Electoral Code and offer the guarantees of the previous codes,” said PDP President Aníbal José Torres at the end of the governing board meeting. “Second, a motion was approved with the following determinations: to require of the State Elections Commission that the votes cast yesterday [Sunday] be validated and counted and that said results be disclosed. We cannot allow speculation to continue.”

Gubernatorial hopeful Carmen Yulín Cruz Soto, the mayor of San Juan, said “[i]f the decision of the governing board is to disclose the results of those [votes] that already [have been cast], do not let yourself be intimidated; there is no trend.”

“Thirty-eight precincts voted, 72 precincts are missing votes in all of Puerto Rico,” she said. “The die is not cast.”

Eduardo Bhatia and Carlos Delgado Altieri, the other two PDP gubernatorial hopefuls, also gave statements at party headquarters in the Puerta de Tierra sector of San Juan.

“I believe that what has come out [of the meeting] is the will of the governing board and of all the candidates that we agreed with,” said Delgado Altieri, the mayor of Isabela.

Bhatia added that “[w]e must now put an end to the ‘fake news,’ with telling lies out there.”

“Puerto Rico deserves to be told the truth,” the former Senate president said. “It is better for the truth to be known, to break away from lies and gossip.”

At press time, Torres said the counting of the votes already cast and their disclosure was set to start Monday and continue today until the island Supreme Court issues a contrary determination against the cases filed by Bhatia and New Progressive Party gubernatorial hopeful Pedro Pierluisi, the former island resident commissioner, for the votes to be counted and disclosed.

The PDP president stated that the party’s governing board also approved a date to resume voting.

“The other thing is to demand that the governor declare this Thursday the 13th a holiday and that on that day the process of voting for the primaries is completed in the precincts where the vote was not made yesterday,” he said.

Torres gave assurances that if the request that the primary be resumed on Thursday is accepted, the PDP has the ballot briefcases ready to be delivered to the polling stations.

“What is the [State Elections] Commission going to do with the truckers to demand that they have to be there on Thursday or the day that is determined?” he said. “How are these routes going to be coordinated so that what happened yesterday [Sunday] does not happen again? This determination is up to the State Elections Commission.”

Torres noted that the determination remains that the people who left the voting centers that opened late will not be able to vote when the process is resumed. Meanwhile, Cruz Soto’s request to start the primary all over again was rejected.

Earlier on Monday, Vázquez Garced said she is willing to sign an executive order to grant the day off and that the primary can be resumed.

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