A Vote for DC

Over the years, District of Columbia residents have fought and
died in ten wars, been subject to federal laws, and paid billions
in federal taxes. Despite all this, they’re still denied voting
representation in Congress. Representative

Tom Davis (R-Virginia)
wants to change that. He’s proposed a
partial solution to the confounding situation. Under Davis’ DC
Fairness in Representation Act, the mostly Democratic capital city
would get a vote in the House, and, as a concession to the GOP, the
Republican stronghold of Utah would be granted a fourth seat.
According to the
Washington Post, ‘This should be a win-win.’

Rep.
Davis
touts his plan in a Pittsburgh Post-Gazzette
editorial
: ‘The beauty of this solution is its political
neutrality,’ he writes, ‘. . .neither party gains any advantage.’
The bill would temporarily increase the size of the House by two
seats, most likely one Democrat and one Republican. After the 2010
census, DC would keep its seat, and the other seats would be
divvied accordingly. DC would still be without a voice in the
Senate.

Writing in Human Events,
Jack
Kemp highlights the bipartisan backing for full DC voting
rights
. Kemp cites a poll finding 82 percent of Americans think
DC residents deserve voting representation in Congress. Poll
support transcended party distinctions with 87 percent of Democrats
and 77 percent of Republicans in favor. Kemp also lists notable
conservatives Bob Dole, Richard Nixon, Barry Goldwater, and
Prescott Bush (grandfather of our current president) as DC voting
rights proponents.

DC Vote, a group lobbying
for voting rights, issued a
press
release
honoring the late Chief Justice William Rehnquist who
in 1970, while serving as the US Assistant Attorney General,
expressed his stance on the issue of democracy in DC: ‘The need for
an amendment [providing representation for the District] at this
late date in our history is too self-evident for further
elaboration; continued denial of voting representation from the
District of Columbia can no longer be justified.’

Just think of it this way: There are enlisted District of
Columbia residents fighting overseas so that democracy can succeed
in Iraq and Afghanistan, yet those same soldiers lack full
legislative representation in their hometown, the capital of the
oldest democracy in the world. Go figure.

Go there >>

A Vote in the House

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