Puerto Rico might become the 51st state but its entry is complicated. Most entries had complications. When Michigan applied for statehood in the 1830s, a population minimum of 60,000 for statehood was required by the U.S. Congress. Michigan qualified. When Nevada applied for statehood in 1864, it did not have the minimum population required by Congress to have at least one member in the House of Representatives. The deficiency was ignored because President Lincoln needed Nevada.
Two years before that in 1863 West Virginia was granted statehood because it had remained loyal to The Union. When the Civil War broke out, some citizens of what was to become West Virginia met in Wheeling. A number of delegates backed statehood and wanted to create the state of Kanawha. The split with what is now Virginia began when its slave-holding plantation owners joined the Confederacy in 1861. The population of the western part of the state, farmers and mountain people, opposed slavery, felt ignored by the eastern part of the state, and the process of separation began.
Lincoln needed Nevada to become a state for 3 reasons. Its mineral wealth would help pay for the war, its residents would surely vote against slavery, and if the upcoming 1864 election was disputed and went to the House of Representatives, Lincoln knew Nevada would support him. A new Nevada state constitution was voted on in 1964. More than 10,000 voted for it: 1,284 voted against it. The state constitution that was wired to Washington, DC, cost $3,417 because it was the longest telegram in history. It took 2 days to transmit. On October 31, 1864, just a few days before the election, Nevada was declared a state. On November 8 Lincoln won a 2nd term as President. Nevada, California, and Oregon voted for Lincoln, the Republican candidate. He won by more than 400,000 popular votes, and he had an electoral majority too. Hillary Clinton won the popular vote but not the electoral majority. Lincoln’s 2nd term ended just 6 weeks after his inauguration when he was assassinated.