Seven justices heard arguments Tuesday weighing whether the island can escape crippling debts that the governor has warned are bringing it to the brink of ruin
The four liberal justices on the supreme court signalled support for the move and House speaker Paul Ryan told reporters Tuesday that Congress will take up a Puerto Rico relief bill in April.
But it remains unclear how the court will rule on whether the Caribbean island’s 2014 law, known as the Recovery Act, can be changed to allow the territory to escape some of its $70bn plus debts.
The economic crisis has left Puerto Rico facing a mass exodus of residents – 84,000 people left Puerto Rico for the US mainland in 2014, a 38% increase from 2010. Some 45% of people live in poverty and the unemployment rate is the highest in the US.