JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Waving flags and signs, a group of demonstrators gathered Monday afternoon in Jacksonville demanding the resignation of Puerto Rican Governor Ricard Rossello.
Dozens of people rallied outside the Duval County Courthouse, voicing their displeasure of the leader. The organizers sent the photo of the rally pictured above.
The demonstration comes as tens of thousands of Puerto Ricans jammed a highway Monday to demand the resignation of Rosselló in a crisis triggered by a leak of offensive, obscenity-laden chat messages between him and his advisers.
The demonstration in Puerto Rico appeared to be the biggest protest on the island in nearly two decades.
"Finally, the government's mask has fallen," said Jannice Rivera, a 43-year-old mechanical engineer who lives in Houston but was born and raised in Puerto Rico and flew in to join the crowds.
The protest came 10 days after the leak of 889 pages of online chats in which Rosselló and some of his close aides insulted women and mocked constituents, including victims of Hurricane Maria.
The leak has intensified long-smoldering anger in the U.S. territory over persistent corruption and mismanagement by the island's two main political parties, a severe debt crisis, a sickly economy and a slow recovery from Maria, which devastated Puerto Rico in September 2017.