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Weeks after Wanda Vázquez was sworn in as Puerto Rico’s governor, the former justice secretary sat down with NBC 6’s sister station Telemundo 51 for an exclusive interview and outlined her plans for the island following political turmoil.
Among her top priorities, Vázquez says she’d like the opportunity to meet with President Donald Trump.
“I want him to see who the Puerto Rican people are,” she told Telemundo 51 in Spanish. “Our people are honest, humble, and in need of the aid he authorized. We need that help to arrive on the island.”
The Puerto Rican governor hopes to secure federal hurricane recovery funds and insisted many on the island are still struggling to recover from the category 4 storm that hit in September 2017.
Contrary to her predecessor Ricardo Rosselló, Vázquez says she is inclined toward Republican philosophies.
“Like individual rights, reduced government, that there aren’t unreasonable tax increases,” she said. “Basically a focus on economic development.”
Despite her plans, being governor is not a job Vázquez initially wanted. In July, she tweeted that she hoped Rosselló would submit a candidate for the position of secretary of state. Rosselló nominated Pedro Pierluisi, but on August 7, the Supreme Court found his swearing in was unconstitutional.
“I had two options: I either accept the challenge, or turn my back to the needs of the people of Puerto Rico, who needed stability, calm and peace,” she said.