Thomas Rivera Schatz
|Acting President of the New Progressive Party|
July 22, 2019
|Preceded by||Ricardo Rosselló|
|14th and 16th President of the Puerto Rico Senate|
January 9, 2017
|Preceded by||Eduardo Bhatia|
January 2, 2009 –January 1, 2013
|Preceded by||Kenneth McClintock|
|Succeeded by||Eduardo Bhatia|
|Member of the Puerto Rico Senate |
from the at-large district
January 2, 2009
|Born||June 10, 1966|
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Political party||New Progressive|
|Relatives||José Rivera Díaz (father)|
|Education||Interamerican University, San Juan (BA, JD)|
Thomas Rivera Schatz (born June 10, 1966) is a Puerto Rican politician, legal advisor, attorney, and former prosecutor. Rivera Schatz is the fourteenth and sixteenth President of the Senate of Puerto Rico. He is affiliated with New Progressive Party of Puerto Rico (abbr. PNP in Spanish) and the mainland Republican Party. On 22 July 2019, Schatz announced that he will take over as acting chair of the PNP following the resignation of Ricardo Rosselló due to the Telegramgate scandal.
Rivera Schatz was born on June 10, 1966, in the Bronx Borough of New York City. He is the son of José A. "Nía" Rivera, a past mayor of Trujillo Alto, and Christina Schatz, a German woman.While in college, he worked full-time at the City of San Juan Public Works Department. He attended the Interamerican University of Puerto Rico School of Law, where he graduated in 1992. A year later, he passed the bar exam required to practice law in Puerto Rico.
Rivera Schatz started his legal career as a legal advisor in the Senate and House of Representatives of Puerto Rico. In 1996, Governor Pedro Rosselló appointed him as a prosecutor at the Puerto Rico Department of Justice. After finishing his service as a prosecutor, he returned to private practice, handling both criminal and civil cases.
In 2000, Rivera Schatz was named Electoral Commissioner for the pro-statehood New Progressive Party (PNP).
Two years later, party president Pedro Rosselló named Rivera Schatz as secretary general of the PNP in addition to his current position as electoral commissioner. He served both positions simultaneously until August 1, 2007, when he decided to run for senator.
Rivera Schatz ran for senator at the PNP primaries where he won a slot in the ballot, receiving the second-most votes. In the 2008 general elections, Rivera Schatz was elected senator. His fellow senators then elected him to be the 14th president of Puerto Rico's Senate. As such, he selected the following persons for his team:
Rivera Schatz was sworn into his post on January 12, 2009.
Thomas Rivera Schatz was reelected in 2012 and elected for the third time as a member of the Senate majority in the 2016 election with 10.33% of the "at large" votes, placing him in second place after independent senatorial candidate Dr. José Vargas Vidot and followed by Juan Dalmau of the Puerto Rico Independence Party (PIP).Rivera Schatz was elected to a second term as President of the Senate of Puerto Rico starting January 2017. He holds two records, first as the only reelected Senate President during the past 28 years and the only Senate President ever elected as such to non-consecutive terms.
On July 22, 2019, Rivera Schatz announced he would succeed Puerto Rican Governor Ricardo Rosselló as head of the New Progressive Party of Puerto Rico (PNP).Rosselló announced his intention to resign due to the ongoing controversy surrounding Telegramgate.
On August 1, 2019, Rivera Schatz and members of the Senate blocked Rosselló's nominated successor Pedro Pierluisi.The same day, Schatz also announced that he will seek the PNP nomination for governor in the 2020 Puerto Rico gubernatorial election.
Rivera Schatz and his father are avid collectors of antique cars.
Pedro Juan Rosselló González, is an American physician and politician who served as Governor of Puerto Rico from 1993 to 2001. He was President of the New Progressive Party from 1991 to 1999 and 2003 to 2008, and served as Senator for the District of Arecibo from 2005 to 2008. His son, Ricardo was the 12th Governor of Puerto Rico, who became the first Puerto Rican governor to resign.
The New Progressive Party is a political party in Puerto Rico that advocates statehood. The PNP is one of the two major parties in Puerto Rico with significant political strength and currently holds both the seat of the governor and of the resident commissioner. In legislative matters, the party has a two-thirds majority in both the Senate and the House of Representatives; a majority that gives the party full control over all legislation, including constitutional amendments, without political opposition. These majorities over the legislative branch, the control over the governorship seat, and a majority of Supreme Court justices affiliated with the party give the PNP absolute control over all three branches of government without political opposition. The party, however, has a minority in the number of mayors on the island.
The Puerto Rico General Elections of 2004 took place on Election Day, Tuesday, November 2, 2004. After a count by the State Commission of Elections, the winner was inaugurated to a four-year term as Governor of Puerto Rico on January 2, 2005.
Kenneth Davison McClintock-Hernández is a politician who served as the twenty-second Secretary of State of Puerto Rico, one of the four longest serving in that post. McClintock served as co-chair of Hillary Clinton’s National Hispanic Leadership Council in 2008, he co-chaired her successful Puerto Rico primary campaign that year and served as the Thirteenth President of the Senate of Puerto Rico until December 31, 2008. He chaired Luis Fortuño’s Incoming Committee on Government Transition in 2008 and the Outgoing Committee on Government Transition in 2012, the only Puerto Rican to serve in both capacities. He was sworn into office as secretary of state on January 2, 2009, by Chief Justice Federico Hernández Denton, fulfilling the role of lieutenant governor in the island.
Jorge Adolfo de Castro-Font is a former Puerto Rican Senator and former member of the House of Representatives. Originally, he was a member of the Popular Democratic Party (PPD) but became an independent representative in 2001 after inner disputes with his party. In 2002, he became a member of the New Progressive Party (PNP) and was elected Senator in 2004 and 2008, despite inner struggles within the party and legal issues.
Norma E. Burgos Andújar is a Puerto Rican politician. She has been a member of the Senate of Puerto Rico since 2000. She also served as the 16th Secretary of State under Governor Pedro Rosselló (1995–1999).
Manuel A. Torres-Nieves, Puerto Rico's Secretary of the Senate of Puerto Rico first served during the tumultuous years of 2005-2008 in which the Senate was controlled by the pro-statehood New Progressive Party (NPP) while the governorship had been controlled by the pro-status quo Popular Democratic Party, served a second consecutive term as Senate Secretary after having served as Acting President of the Senate from January 1–12, 2009, between the Senate presidencies of Kenneth McClintock and Thomas Rivera Schatz. He then served as Puerto Rico's first Electoral Comptroller before his third election as Secretary of the Senate during Rivera Schatz' historic second non-consecutive term as Senate President.
Carlos Alberto Díaz Sánchez is a Puerto Rican politician, and former member of the Puerto Rico House of Representatives and Senate.
Roberto Rexach Benítez also known as his stage name Bobby, was a Puerto Rican politician, and former Senator and Representative. Rexach Benítez served as the tenth President of the Senate of Puerto Rico from 1993 to 1996. He also served as a member of the Puerto Rico House of Representatives from 1973 to 1976, under the Popular Democratic Party (PPD) and as a member of the Senate (1985–1998) under the pro-statehood New Progressive Party (PNP).
Alba Iris "Cacatúa" Rivera Ramirez is a Puerto Rican politician affiliated to the New Progressive Party (PNP). Rivera served as a member of the House of Representatives of Puerto Rico representing District 3 of San Juan from 1997 to 2013. She was also a member of the Senate of Puerto Rico (1985–1989) and Director of the Puerto Rican Office of Woman's Affairs.
The 2008 Puerto Rico gubernatorial election, took place on November 4, 2008 as part of the Puerto Rican general elections. It coincided with the 2008 United States general elections. Then-incumbent governor Aníbal Acevedo Vilá, Democratic, PPD was eligible for reelection, and ran for a second four-year term. His opponent, Luis Fortuño, Republican and PNP Resident Commissioner of Puerto Rico, defeated him.
Kimmey Raschke Martínez is a politician and Senator. She was a member of the Senate of Puerto Rico from 2009-2012.
The Puerto Rico general election of 2012 were held on Tuesday, November 6, 2012 to elect the officials of the Puerto Rican government that would serve for the next four years, most notably the Governor of Puerto Rico. A status referendum was held on the same date.
José Luis Rivera Guerra is a Puerto Rican politician affiliated with the New Progressive Party (PNP). He was a member of the Puerto Rico House of Representatives representing the 17th District from 2000 to 2013. He was reelected in 2016. He resigned on July 31, 2018.
A constitutional referendum was held in Puerto Rico on 19 August 2012. Voters were asked whether they approve of two amendments to the constitution; one to eliminate the absolute right to bail and the other to decrease the number of members of the Legislative Assembly. Despite support from the party in government and part of the main opposition party, both amendments were rejected by voters.
Zoé Laboy Alvarado is a Puerto Rican attorney and public servant. Laboy served as Secretary of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation from 1997 to 2000. in 2016 she was elected to become a senator with the New Progressive Party (PNP) where she was the leader of the liberal wing of the party. On August 21, 2019, she was appointed as Governor Wanda Vázquez Garced's Chief of Staff. In December 2019, she endorsed former Vice president and presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden and has served as co-chair on his 2020 presidential campaign "Puerto Rico for Biden Leadership Committee".
Ricardo J. Llerandi Cruz is a Puerto Rican politician who served as Chief of Staff of Puerto Rico in 2019. Llerandi is affiliated with the New Progressive Party (PNP), a well known criminal organizationin Puerto Rico. He was elected to the Puerto Rico House of Representatives in 2012 to represent District 14. After being reelected in 2016 in that election, he resigned to lead the Puerto Rico Trade and Export Company. Llerandi resigned his position as Chief of Staff on July 23, 2019 following his involvement in the Telegramgate scandal. Before entering politics, Llerandi worked as an accountant, notary, and civil attorney in the field of medical malpractices.
General elections were held in Puerto Rico on Tuesday, November 8, 2016 to elect the officials of the Puerto Rican government that will serve from January 2017 to January 2021, most notably the Governor of Puerto Rico. Rossello was elected Governor of Puerto Rico with the lowest percentage of votes since 1968. The election also resulted in a historic 23% drop in turnout. 2016's participation was the lowest voter turnout in Puerto Rican history. Rossello would go on to serve a 2 year term, having to resign after historic protests as a result of Telegramgate scandal. Wanda Vázquez Garced succeeded Rossello.
Telegramgate, also known as Chatgate, or RickyLeaks was a political scandal involving Ricardo Rosselló, then Governor of Puerto Rico, which began on July 8, 2019, with the leak of hundreds of pages of a group chat on the messaging application Telegram between Rosselló and members of his staff from his term. The messages were considered vulgar, racist, and homophobic toward several individuals and groups, and discussed how they would use the media to target potential political opponents. The leak came in the midst of allegations by former Secretary of Treasury of Puerto Rico, Raúl Maldonado Gautier, that his department boasted an "institutional mafia" that Rosselló was involved in. The leaks also came a year after a previous scandal, dubbed WhatsApp Gate, involving other members of Rosselló's cabinet.
The 2020 Puerto Rico gubernatorial election will be held on November 3, 2020, to elect the governor of Puerto Rico, concurrently with the election of the Resident Commissioner, the Senate, the House of Representatives, and the mayors of the 78 municipalities. Incumbent New Progressive Party Governor Wanda Vázquez Garced, who succeeded to the governorship on August 7, 2019, is eligible to run for a full term in office, which she announced she would do on December 16, 2019.
| President of the Puerto Rico Senate |
| President of the Puerto Rico Senate |
|Party political offices|
| Chair of the Puerto Rico New Progressive Party |