House to vote on D.C. statehood bill

House to vote on D.C. statehood bill

In this April 21, 2021, photo, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., joins Del. Eleanor Holmes-Norton, D-D.C., left, at a news conference ahead of the House vote on H.R. 51, the Washington, DC Admission Act, on Capitol Hill in Washington. Proponents of statehood for Washington, D.C., face a milestone moment in their decades-long movement to reshape the American political map. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

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UPDATED 8:09 AM PT – Thursday, April 22, 2021

A bill seeking to make Washington, D.C. the 51st state is slated for a House vote. The Democrat-led proposal will head to the floor on Thursday in a move House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has claimed will “reaffirm the truth that all deserve a voice in our democracy.”

Conservatives have long pushed against the granting of statehood to D.C. with many agreeing it’s nothing more than an attempt by the other side to get two more Democrat senators. A nearly identical bill passed the Democrat-controlled House last year, but ultimately failed in the then Republican-controlled Senate.

In a press conference last year regarding the identical bill, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) expressed his outrage of the Democrat’s attempt to shift the balance in the Senate by adding two more seats for Democrats.

“It would empower the most radical agenda in modern American politics,” he stated.”This is not about enfranchising people, this is about expanding the Senate map to accommodate the most radical agenda that I’ve ever seen since I’ve been up here.”

Democrats claim D.C. statehood is a “fight for racial justice” with D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser testifying in last months hearing on the legislation

“The simple fact is denying American citizens a vote in the body that taxes them goes against the founding principles of this great nation,” said the mayor. “The disenfranchisement of Washingtonians is one of the remaining glaring civil rights and voting rights issues of our time.”

Meanwhile, GOP senators have continued to push back against the idea while characterizing it as nothing more than a political power grab. The ranking member on the House Oversight Committee, congressman James Comer (R-Ky.), said this is Democrats first step toward enacting large-scale re-structuring of U.S. government to fit a left-wing agenda.

This also comes as 22 Republican attorneys general sent a letter to Joe Biden and congressional leaders arguing the proposed legislation is unconstitutional and bad policy. Additionally, they warned the move would create an uneven balance of power and effectively turn Washington, D.C. into a “super state” that can overrule the democratic will of other states.

If the statehood bill, known as H.R.51, passes in the Democrat-controlled House then it surely faces a long-shot bid to overcome Republican opposition in the narrowly divided Senate.

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