Make no mistake, with the Democrats in control of both chambers of Congress and the White House, making Washington, D.C. the 51st state is nothing short of a partisan power grab.
Washington, D.C. was created in 1790 when the state of Maryland and the Commonwealth of Virginia donated 100 square miles of their land to form the capital. Fifty-six years later, Virginia reacquired the portion it had donated.
Suffice it to say, all persons currently living in D.C. have never had typical congressional representation. Still, nothing keeps them from moving to another part of the U.S. to acquire the constituent services they claim to be so desperate for.
Proponents of D.C. statehood (all partisan Democrats) use a deceitful argument to make their case that D.C.’s 700,000 residents need congressional representation out of fairness. They say citizens of D.C. have no representation on the floor of the U.S. Congress.
They ignore the fact that D.C.’s delegate has floor privileges where they can bend the ear of their 434 peers with access greater than that of the most highly paid lobbyist on Capitol Hill. They only lack representation if you believe Joe Biden in the White House and a majority of the House and Senate who are Democrats don’t represent the interests of the city’s voters; 92 percent of whom voted for Biden in the 2020 presidential general election and 75 percent of whom are registered as partisan Democrats.
Rest assured, Pelosi, et al. would not be concerned about fairness to D.C. voters if the district had voted 92 percent for Donald Trump.
The concern about lack of representation that Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, and Joe Biden feign, could be easily solved without partisan rancor. In fact, I would bet many Republicans, along with a handful of Democrat holdouts such as Sen. Joe Manchin, would probably go along with the simple solution.
The solution is, return Washington, DC to Maryland. As such, the city’s voters would immediately have the representation they are apparently so longing for. Overnight, they would fit right in with majority-Democrat Maryland.
Since its inception, the state has sent only 16 Republicans to the US Senate out of 63 Senators, and only 53 Republicans to the House of Representatives out of a historical total of 316 House members (the state currently has one lone Republican congressional district). Washington, D.C. residents will feel right at home in Maryland which has only supported three Republican candidates for president in the last 70 years.
In addition to stopping an attempted partisan power grab, making D.C. a part of Maryland again will stop future power grabs by either party.
According to the U.S. Constitution, there are only three requirements to become a state. They are: 1) approval of legislation by a majority of both Congresses and signed into law by the president (or overriding a veto if necessary); 2) support from the area to be created, and 3) approval from the state to be ceded from.
Democrats should stop and think about what they are asking for or they may end up being beaten at their own game. If the American people see what they are up to (a disgraceful opportunistic power procurement), what is to keep a future Republican Congress and president, in conjunction with a complicit Republican governor and hyper-partisan geographic area from becoming the next state?
Collier County, Florida (home to Naples) comes to mind. I grew up in Naples, and it is one of the wealthiest and most Republican-leaning areas of the country. Collier would make a fine 52nd state with its 400,000 residents having two U.S. Senators and one House member – all Republicans.
The Democrats best be careful what they wish for in pushing for DC to be the 51st state. We would all be better off if we just gave the District back to Maryland, ending the debate with finality, historical precedent, and fairness.
Chris Ingram is a communication, political, and media consultant in Tampa. Follow him on Twitter at @IrreverentView or send him an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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