Puerto Rico is Not for Sale activists confront Luis Miranda Jr. on his backing for PROMESA
By Puerto Rico is Not for Sale
Contact Lorraine Liriano (347) 228-2214 [email protected]. Article from on a press release published March 2, 2023.
Manhattan, New York — At a forum March 1 at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York (CUNY), longtime political and nonprofit operative Luis Miranda Jr. callously and cowardly defended his decision to lobby for the oppressive PROMESA bill. This bill is currently being imposed through an oppressive, austerity-driven Financial Oversight and Management Board (“la Junta”) on Puerto Rico. Miranda also trivialized the displacement of residents and the union-busting tactics of his clients.
At the talk, ironically if not cynically, titled “Latinos, Elections and the Future of American Democracy,” Miranda, the unrepentant supporter of PROMESA, spoke broadly about elections and democracy throughout the United States, while glaringly and conveniently omitting his role in pushing for the extremely undemocratic and unaccountable Junta to rule over the U.S. colony of Puerto Rico.
Two women activists from the campaign, “Puerto Rico Not for Sale,” Lorraine Liriano and Veronica Sanchez, challenged Miranda and reminded him of the role he played in pushing for PROMESA and taking on clients at his MirRam Group, which include Industry City — a client with plans to rezone and displace Puerto Ricans and other longtime residents out of Sunset Park, Brooklyn. Another client, Amazon, paid Miranda $100,000 in their unsuccessful quest to bust the historic union-organizing campaign by exploited workers.
Liriano said: “Tonight, Luis Miranda Jr. peeled off his treacherous skin to reveal how truly vile he really is, by not responding to why he took clients like Amazon and Industry City. It says more about his inability to justify how decades as a political operative for the Democratic Party machine have dehumanized and desensitized his connection to community and the working class.”
When asked a pointed question about his lobbying for PROMESA and the Junta, which has closed hundreds of public schools, slashed worker pensions, driven the privatization of public resources and created the conditions for large-scale displacement of Puerto Ricans, Miranda responded, “I felt I needed to speak about the responsible thing to do for Puerto Rico, not the ideological thing that you would have wanted.”
On lobbying for the Industry City plan to displace Boricuas [Puerto Ricans] and others and lobbying against workers organizing a union at Amazon, Miranda sneered, “Nobody here gives a shit about the two issues that you raised.”
Sanchez said, “We find it extremely ironic if not outrageous that on the same day that we commemorate the selfless and courageous actions of Puerto Rican freedom fighters like Lolita Lebron, that someone like Luis Miranda Jr., who lobbied for the imposition of an undemocratic and unaccountable Junta over Puerto Rico, is given a platform to speak about Latinos and American democracy. If this is the kind of democracy he seeks for Puerto Rico, the families that are being oppressed daily by this Junta want no part of it.”
It should be known that Miranda, a longtime Democratic Party political operative, has his tentacles wrapped around numerous institutions and organizations that should take note of his contempt for hard-working Puerto Ricans, longtime community residents and workers who seek true democracy at their workplace. Those include “The City” news platform, The Public Theater, the Latino Victory Fund, the National Puerto Rican Parade and the Hispanic Federation.
Tellingly, and since he was unable to provide substantive and credible answers that would justify his treachery, Miranda resorted to name-calling and belittling the women as they made their exit, calling them “cowards” and making misogynistic references.
Liriano said, “His laughter and insults to not leave the presentation were geared toward making us feel like the object of the misogynist cat-calling that reduces women to ‘mami mami.’ When he said we were cowards, the true coward was himself and his inability to justify what is not justifiable.”
She continued, “Tonight taught me that we need to occupy more spaces and drive home our narrative: that our people have had enough of the manipulations of politicians, who sell themselves to the highest bidder; and that we need a liberation movement and organizing in our communities, so our people don’t fall prey to the likes of Luis Miranda Jr. ¡Qué viva Puerto Rico Libre! Independencia es la única solución!” (“Long live a free Puerto Rico! Independence is the only solution!”)
The Puerto Rico Not for Sale Campaign is made up of organizations and individuals in Puerto Rico and the United States who are fighting for the abolition of the Financial Oversight and Management Board, the illegal debt and U.S. imperialism and intervention in Puerto Rico.