US territories seek non-voting US Senate seats

Posted on Jul 13 2022


Gregorio Kilili Sablan

Delegate Gregorio Kilili C. Sablan (D-MP) is co-sponsor of a legislation that would provide for nonvoting delegates to the U.S. Senate to represent the CNMI, Guam, American Samoa, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Delegate Michael F. Q. San Nicolas (D-GU) is the main author of H.R. 6941. The bill, which is also co-authored by, Washington, D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton, and U.S. Virgin Islands Delegate Stacey Plaskett, was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.

The 28-member strong Congressional Hispanic Caucus reportedly endorsed the bill, known as the Territorial Representation in the Senate Act.

Under the bill, the local legislature of each territory shall determine whether the territory will be represented by a nonvoting delegate in the U.S. Senate.

When asked for comments, Sablan said last night that it is their intention that the bill progress for passage in the House.
The delegate shall be elected at large and by a popularity of the votes cast for the office of delegate. The term of the delegate shall commence on the 3rd day of January following the date of the election.

Until the Senate rules are amended to provide otherwise, the delegate from the territory shall receive the same compensation, allowances, and benefits as a member of the Senate.
The delegate shall be entitled to whatever privileges and immunities are, may be, granted to any other Senate member, except that he or she shall be nonvoting on final Senate votes.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a senior reporter of Saipan Tribune. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has covered all news beats in the CNMI. He is a recipient of the CNMI Supreme Court Justice Award. Contact him at

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