Bill is back to make Washington, DC 51st state — still faces high hurdle in Senate


The license plates for D C. Residents read in big, bold letters and taxation without representation. It's a rallying cry against D. C is the lack of direct voting power in the U. S. Congress as NPR's Barbara Sprint reports. Statehood advocates are hopeful that what was once seen as a liberal pipe dream is now gaining traction. 30 years ago, delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton first introduced a bill for Washington D. C. Statehood. She's back at it, and this time, she says, it feels different. We've gotten off of the wish list, too. On approach of a new reality. Norton says she's encouraged by national polls that suggest growing support for statehood and the record number of co sponsors. The House legislation and its Senate counterpart, have Her bill, which strength the size of the federal district and admit the remaining area as the nation's 51st state. But Republicans stand universally opposed, arguing it would take a constitutional amendment to admit D. C as a state. Here's Georgia Congressman Jody Hice during today's House oversight hearing, the Democratic Party attempting a political power grab of obtaining more senators, that's entirely what this is all about. That phrase power grab is a constant and GOP messaging on statehood, referring to the fact that the district votes overwhelmingly for Democrats and would likely elect two Democratic senators. But Norton tells NPR that at its core statehood is not about politics while we're looking for is equality with other Americans, especially since we pay the highest federal taxes per capita in the United States, she notes that D C has a population of over 700,000 residents larger than Wyoming and Vermont. Last year when the House first past Norton's bill, Republican Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas, dismissed that point. Wyoming is a well rounded working class state. New state of Washington would not be. It was a barb that stung many residents in the district, including business owner Deana Dorsey Calloway. You can't see me, but I'm having an emotional reaction. The eyes are watering probably hear my voice quivering of it, because Just it's disgusting. It's you're a sure of an entire population of people here in Washington, advocates argue statehood is also a civil rights issue, as most of DC's residents are minorities. We do believe this is one of the most important racial justice fights of our time that stash a Rhodes, campaign manager of 51 for 51, a statehood campaign from our perspective, leaving 700,000 mostly black and brown residents without a vote in Congress is racism. D C. Residents pay federal taxes and serve in the military but have no voting Congress. This is an injustice and honestly a stain on American democracy. Norton's bill is all but guaranteed passage in the House. There's broad support from Democrats in the Senate and the White House. But there's a road block. The Senate has a big brick wall in front of its called the Filibusters that house bills are passing and slamming right into. That's Ellie's up Nick of Fix our Senate, a campaign focused on eliminating the legislative filibuster, which requires a 60 senator threshold to advance most bills. Not all Senate Democrats are on board with eliminating the maneuver, arguing it's meant to protect the minority party. But unless that brick wall is eliminated or changed, D C statehood goes back to being on the Democratic wish list.

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