House Passes Legislation Recognizing DC Statehood

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Posted: Jun 26, 2020 2:55 PM
House Passes Legislation Recognizing DC Statehood

Source: AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

The Democratic majority in the House of Representatives passed monumental legislation to recognize Washington, D.C. as a state on Friday. The passage of HR-51 marks the first time that either chamber of Congress has passed a bill recognizing our nation’s capital as a state.

With the green-light from Speaker Pelosi, the bill was introduced by D.C.’s non voting delegate, Eleanor Holmes Norton. The legislation would decrease the federal capital to include only the White House, Capitol, Supreme Court and other government buildings across the National Mall. The remainder of the city would be recognized as the 51st state, the Washington, Douglass Commonwealth. 

House Democrats dubbed the legislation as “long overdue:”

House Republicans, opposed to recognizing D.C. as a state, offered a motion to recommit the legislation that would condition D.C. statehood on protections of Second Amendment rights, protection of monuments, full funding of law enforcement and public safety, prohibition of sanctuary city status, autonomous zones and obstruction of law enforcement, Prohibition of the use of taxpayer funds for campaign activity for public office; and a continuing participation in the DC Opportunity Scholarship Program. The amendment, torpedoed by Democrats, was offered by Pennsylvania Congressman Fred Keller (R-PA).

The legislation is unlikely to pass the GOP’s majority in the Senate, and President Trump remains opposed to recognizing D.C. as a state.

"DC will never be a state,” the president said of the legislation. “You mean District of Columbia, a state? Why? So we can have two more Democratic -- Democrat senators and five more congressmen? No thank you. That'll never happen."