February 12, 2020

DC statehood heads for House floor

Your editor in 1970 wrote the first article showing how DC could become a state without a constitutional amendment. Three months later, the DC statehood movement was launched led by civil rights activist Julius Hobson. 
Washington City Paper - D.C.’s statehood bill is heading to the House floor for a vote, where it’s expected to pass.

If H.R.51 passes, it’ll be the first time any chamber of Congress passes statehood legislation.

The goal of making D.C. the 51st state isn’t without obstacles. Republican lawmakers oppose statehood, citing various reasons like doubts around constitutionality and concerns over parking spaces. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said the quiet part aloud in a Fox News interview; he doesn’t back statehood because that would give the Senate two more Democrats.  

During Tuesday’s House Committee on Oversight and Reform hearing—where H.R. 51 had to pass before it moved to the full House—Republicans voiced their opposition to statehood and introduced various amendments to undermine the bill.

DCist’s Rachel Kurzius, who attended the hearing, documents every excuse for opposing statehood in a Twitter thread. Some highlights include Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) essentially blaming D.C. residents for living in a city with no representation, Rep. Jody Hice (R-GA) declaring the Founding Fathers wouldn’t want it this way, and Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-WI) reducing D.C. to just a government “town with a little bit of tourism connected to the buildings.”

The bill ultimately passed committee without any of the anti-abortion and pro-gun amendments attached to it.

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