Today is Friday, April 23, 2021. Here’s what you need to know:
The United States House of Representatives passed a bill on Thursday that would give the status of statehood to Washington, D.C. While D.C. remains home to just over 700,000 people, it has remained a democratic priority for years now as the political demographics align with that of the party.
While democrats won the White House, Senate and House of Representatives, assuming a majority in the already razor-thin margins of the Senate was difficult. The bill requires 60 votes from the Senate to pass, and not even all democrats are on board.
Similar legislation was passed in the House a year ago, but during the time of a republican senate majority and ultimately stopped there. Democrats argue that granting statehood to the D.C. area would promote racial equity as D.C.’s voters of color are disenfranchised at a disproportionate rate.
Democrats argued that the Constitution states “no taxation without representation,” and believe that’s exactly what’s been happening in D.C. The legislation would rename the area, “Washington, Douglass Commonwealth” named after civil rights leader, Frederick Douglass. The move is unlikely to pass in the Senate as democrats need 10 republican’s support, and so far have none.
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