In what has been a sort of quiet pursuit inside of the COVID-19 pandemic and stand for racial justice in America, the Democratic House, today, voted for Washington D.C. to become the 51st state.
The Vote at the House
The vote was 232 to 180. No Republicans voted in favor of the move and one Democratic Rep. Collin Peterson of Minnesota and Independent Rep. Justin Amash also voted no.
The bill is now on the way to the Senate. There, it is likely to meet an end at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and the Republican held Senate. President Trump, too, is unlikely to allow D.C. to become a state.
Washington D.C.’s Pursuit of Statehood
Residents of Washington D.C. have long wondered why the American slogan “no taxation without representation” has not applied to their District. Residents pay federal taxes but do not have voting representation in Congress–one House member and two senators. Carved from the states of Virginia and Maryland, Washington D.C. doesn’t belong to any state.
When House delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton introduced the bill to change the name of Washington D.C. on Friday, she noted that D.C. holds a population larger than that of Wyoming or Vermont at around 700,000 people. She also stated that more federal taxes are paid by the District than 22 states.
What if D.C. Becomes a State?
The implication that comes with Washington D.C. becoming a state is that the left leaning District would likely elect two Democratic senators.
A bill called HR 51 would rename Washington the “District of Columbia (D.C),” representing Italian explorer Christopher Columbus, to Washington “Douglass Commonwealth (D.C.),” representing abolitionist Frederick Douglass who was born in Maryland.
The Senate is set to cast their votes soon.