Washington, DC, has a larger population than Wyoming or Vermont, which each have two senators and a voting representative. And we have to talk about the composition of this population: it is a plurality of black cities, mostly black and brown, and there is a long history District political rights being limited for this reason. The right to rule of the house – for townspeople to even elect a mayor and council – has been rejected by Congress and many white Washingtonians for much of the 20th century, writes historian Kyla Sommers in The Washington Post.
“In response to a Washington Post investigation into Home Rule in 1966, the people of White DC clearly articulated the racism behind their opposition, “she writes,” saying things such as “it is not fair that the national capital is all colored ”and“ they don’t have the right education to do the right job ”and dismiss the idea“ because a guy of color would be mayor – no other reason ”.
This – not just the Republican opposition to making a strong Democratic region a state with senators – is an important context for the opposition to statehood. The district government expands this reality advocating for the creation of a state, noting that “the average electoral power of black Americans is only 75% of the representation of the average White American in the Senate and 55% of the Hispanic voter” and that statehood would help change that.
The same district government case notes that the creation of a state would have made a major difference in the Jan.6 attack on the United States Capitol, as the order to activate the Washington, DC National Guard would have been under. local control, not left on hold. hours while the Defense Department and Trump’s White House allowed the attack to continue.
This is not the only recent major event in which Washington, DC has been denied equal treatment: “WAlthough our population is larger than that of Vermont and Wyoming, under the CARES Act, the district was denied $ 755 million in emergency funds, which is the amount provided to the state on less populated through the Coronavirus Relief Fund.
It’s part of the United States, with 700,000 residents, regularly getting trapped because of the country’s sordid racial history and persistent Republican opposition. both full political rights for blacks and a Senate less oriented towards sparsely populated Republican states. The current structure of the Senate allows Republicans to rule over a minority, both through filibustering and its orientation towards states with smaller populations, and they want to keep it that way.
Democrats have moved to an understanding of the importance of this issue, not only for political power, but also for democracy and justice. Without significantly reforming the filibuster, this will not happen. Without a united Democratic Party, this will not happen. But it’s at hand and it’s the right thing to do.
Norton’s bill would reduce the size of the Federal District – the part without full state rights – to the immediate vicinity of the White House, the Capitol, the Supreme Court and the National Mall, and transform the rest of present-day Washington. , DC, Washington State, Douglass Commonwealth, in honor of Frederick Douglass.