Since Donald Trump entered the political arena, stories about his sexual escapades, his failed businesses, and his constant displays of racism and bigotry filled the newspapers and airways. In 2020 and 2021 his fascist aspirations became more obvious as he continued to refuse responsibility for tens of thousands of preventable deaths from Covid-19. Other issues which could change the future of our nation were pushed aside and possibly forgotten.
One of those issues was statehood for Washington D.C.
Republicans oppose the idea for a single reason. D.C.’s voting record proves that the two senators chosen by the people of the District of Columbia would undoubtedly be Democrats.
In 2022 the population of Washington D.C. was 707,109. The populations other less-populated states are, Alaska with 738,023: Vermont, 646,545: and Wyoming, 579,495. Our government continues to deny the rights of American citizens who live in areas surrounding Capitol Hill.
The residents of D.C. do not have a representative with voting rights in congress. Equally important are the following issues explained by those supporting D.C. Statehood.
The District of Columbia is the only political and geographical entity within the United States of America whose citizens bear the responsibilities of citizenship, including taxation and Selective Service registration, without sharing in the full rights and privileges of citizenship.
Washington’s residents pay more taxes than residents in 22 states and pay more per capita to the federal government than any state—yet they have no votes in Congress.
DC is subject to the whims of the federal government where Congress interferes with our local laws, local funding and operations.
DC has all the same responsibilities, but not the same rights, as our fellow Americans—we are treated as second-class citizens
Like our counterparts in all 50 states, D.C. residents pay federal taxes, serve in the military and on juries, start businesses and families, and contribute to our national economy.
Yet, we are still unable to control our own budget or our own laws, and we still have no votes in Congress.
DC residents want statehood and made their votes clear during the 2016 referendum with an 86% in favor to make Washington, DC the 51st state.
Congress passed the Democrat-dominated House by a vote of 232-180. It was the first time that a chamber of Congress had passed such legislation. Currently, legislation was introduced in both chambers and has overwhelming support among Senate Democrats.
There is no Republican Party today. Every man and woman on the right side of the aisle deserted the GOP nearly six years ago. They support Trump and his terminal plans for America. This has cost them a huge percentage of their base. They are desperate to receive the support of Trump’s cult. If the District of Columbia became a state, control of the Senate may belong to Democrats until the end of the century.
The fact remains that statehood for D.C. should not be a political issue. With a population of more than 700,000 American citizens, who live within the 48 contiguous states, they deserve to have the same rights as their neighbors in Virginia, and Maryland. This may be one of the most egregious violations of the intent of the Constitution in history.
All Americans should get behind their brothers and sisters in D.C. and demand statehood. This should have happened in July of 1790 when Congress created our nation’s permanent capital.
By James Turnage, Novelist
World Population Review: Washington, District of Columbia Population 2022
Statehood.dc.gov: Why Statehood for DC
Top and Featured Image Courtesy of Stephen Mike Maguire‘s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License