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Why Puerto Rico is not a US state

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Nearly half of Americans don’t know that Puerto Ricans are US citizens. But they are, and have been since 1917.

Watch why Puerto Rico won't have power for months: http://bit.ly/2DBCPVp

Read about Puerto Rico's latest bid for statehood: http://bit.ly/2DGlz4L

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As residents of the US Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Puerto Ricans have US passports, can travel freely throughout the country and can serve in the military. But that doesn’t mean the US citizens who live in Puerto Rico get the same rights and benefits as US citizens stateside.

Watch the video above to understand how Puerto Rico became a US commonwealth, the tangled relationship that developed, and how it all affects prosperity and development on the island today.

Vox.com is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Check out http://www.vox.com.

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