Democrats Introduce Senate Bill To Make D.C. The 51st State

Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) and other Democratic senators are introducing a bill for D.C. statehood today, a proposal with heavy opposition in the public in continuing polls.  Indeed, the bill was one of the reasons that members and advocates demanded the killing of the filibuster rule to force through the change in status based on a bare majority. If successful, it would give the Democrats two more senators in a city-state that will expected to remain reliably blue.  I have testified repeatedly on this issue.  There are strong arguments for changing the status of the District and statehood is a viable option. It would clearly be constitutional unlike past proposals. The question is whether it is the best option for the country.  Roughly 20 years ago, I proposed a “modified retrocession plan” that would be an alternative if the Congress wanted full voting rights for citizens of the District.

The proposal would make create the first city-state in our history with a population of 700,000.

However, half of the country opposes the idea. A new Harris/Hill poll shows fifty-two percent of respondents said they favored statehood while 48 percent said they opposed it.  That is heavy opposition for such a statehood change.

Biden just unveiled another proposal with heavy public opposition: a commission that would allow court-packing or other structural changes on the Court to blunt the conservative majority.

I have written a long academic publication on the status of the District of Columbia and testified at the prior hearings on allowing for voting representation of District residents. See Jonathan Turley, Too Clever By Half: The Partial Representation of the District of Columbia in the House of Representatives, 76 George Washington University Law Review 305-374 (2008).   I also testified in both the House and Senate repeatedly on such proposals.

The debate over D.C. statehood is a complex issue with historical, constitutional, and legal dimensions.  It is also an issue with important and unresolved racial issues of a black-majority city without direct representation in Congress.  I have previously voiced my view that such lack of representation for the District is unacceptable and untenable in our country.

In all, I have testified five times in the House and the Senate on this issue in Congress, particularly on the effort to simply give the District a vote in the House of Representatives.  I encouraged the Congress to avoid such flagrantly unconstitutional measures of a vote as a non-state entity and instead focus on a vote of statehood or retrocession.  That is why I offered a “modified retrocession plan”, which was also discussed in an academic work. Under my proposal, the mall and core federal buildings would remain the District of Columbia (as is the case in this legislation) but the remainder of the District would retrocede back to Maryland (as did the other half of the original District to Virginia). In this way, residents would receive full representation while receiving the benefits of various Maryland educational and other opportunities. That reduction of the federal enclave has been incorporated in some statehood proposals.  I believed that such retrocession offered the fastest course for not just full representation but improved social and educational programs for the district residents.  I laid out a phased retrocession plan that began with immediate and full representation.  This could be done by congressional vote.

People of good-faith can disagree on such proposals and the current legislation is clearly a constitutional approach to reaching a final resolution on the lack of representation in Congress.  Indeed, it is important to hear from those who believe that statehood is an important step toward dealing with the historical racial inequalities and discrimination in our nation.  Modified retrocession may not be enough to resolve such issues for many in our community.

179 thoughts on “Democrats Introduce Senate Bill To Make D.C. The 51st State”

    1. The Rs want to enshrine minority rule. The only way the Ds will get single party is if the voters give it to them.

  1. The beatings will continue until unity is improved.

    It would seem Biden and the Democrats have decided the path to unity will not come from a starboard turn toward a moderate agenda and bipartisanship. Nope. We’ll get there from the portside. One party rule, lawfare against your political opponents, censoring speech, cancel culture, etc. They won’t stop until we’ve become china-united.

    1. Also the Left is pushing its social change agenda via an “Impact Economy” model in which woke corporations push to transform the world.

      New model: Woke brands + Leftism + Corporatism = combined effort to force social change.

      1. Those woke brands want access to Chinese markets and what Beijing expects for that access. That’s where the “systemic racism” BS comes from.

      2. The only ‘social change’ we’ve seen is a breakdown in law and order, abuse of people on prosecutors’ enemies lists, harassment of normal people by the public health karenwaffe, and abuse of social and political dissenters generally.

      3. This is the direction we are going and it will most certainly force a type of unity that is antithetical to the concept of freedom, liberty and natural rights.

        The down side of the low and the dark side of the high
        Behavior is affected by the individual and his or her interaction with the environment. Therefore, social context has a very strong effect on how someone behaves. Ranking people “low” or “high” in a review system will ultimately affect how someone behaves, due to self-perceptions, comparative standing, and interaction with others.

        The down side of a comparatively low or negative ranking is that finding opportunities to redeem yourself and improve your online social score becomes limited and takes considerable time and luck to improve. This situation can actually reinforce negative attitudes and behaviors. This can lead to rebellious behavior, isolation, de-individualization, and polarization.

        High or positive online social ratings might motivate people to behave differently too, forcing people to conform to socially desired standards and to only engage with people of similar or higher social standing. This limits social integration and widens the gap between those ranked “low” and those ranked “high.”
        https://www.hult.edu/blog/your-social-credit-score/

    2. “. . . become china-united.”

      Biden could show that he’s bipartisan, by appointing Bobulinski ambassador to China.

        1. He’s never been asked! Biden got all the way into the White House without a single “journalist” asking him the obvious question.

          When a journalist does dare to ask Biden a legit question (whether the question comes from CBS News or Fox News, makes no matter) Biden’s response is to sneer at it, to mock the journo asking it, to laugh at the preposterousness of actually being asked such a question, and to dismissively, arrogantly walk away.

          How very authoritarian and elitist of you, Joey from Scranton.

  2. Democrats are lying to you and so is the FBI. There is no threat from “right-wing domestic terrorists,” the threat is from progressives in the House Senate, and White House. That is why the National Guard is still in Washington DC, even though the inauguration. The National guard is there to protect them from the average American because you are not going to like what they do. Biden’s first actions were to kill tens of thousands of jobs. Unity was in Biden’s speech but the only unity the left is talking about is everyone shutting up and doing what they are told. They are attempting to criminalize all politics but there own. The FBI is arresting people simply because they are conservatives. After spending 4 years claiming Trump colluded with Russia, Biden wants to sign treaties with Putin and has social media oligarchs silencing speech. If you think this is a good thing than I can’t wait to see what you say when they come for you and yours…

    1. ‘The neoliberals on Biden’s team know their policies are economy-killers so they’re using a two-track strategy to distract you:

      1. Blame the pandemic/Trump

      2. Show trials and state commissions on “domestic extremists”‘

      @jackposobiec

  3. Proceeding with ‘impeachment’ against a former president in a ‘trial’ without the chief justice is getting suspiciously close to becoming a prohibited Bill of Attainder.

    See attainder of Earl of Stafford for an early example.

  4. With the radicals at the tiller the whole country is about to shoot the rapids and maybe go over the waterfall.

  5. For the House of Representatives and the Senate to vote for the admission of a “new” State is the required vote a simple majority or is a two-thirds (2/3) vote required?
    What is the the controlling law?
    dennis hanna

    1. Article IV sec 3 applies, I believe: legislatures and Congress decide, based on their own rules. No legislature is involved with DC, and Congress would probably have to clear a filibuster vote in the Senate, so I think the congressional hurdle would be 60%, not 2/3.

      Feel free to correct me. Not a constitutional scholar.

      1. Diogenes,
        Mahalo, thank you; thank you so much.
        A reasonable inference is, should be, that the professor had an “intellectual” (academic?) duty or responsibility to include his understanding or interpretation of the vote requirement.
        I have said more than twice this blog and, indeed, the professor seems more included to “inciting,” or least, encouraging political trash talk.
        dennis hanna

  6. YOU WANT SOMETHING. WE WANT SOMETHING.

    Set the people of Illinois and New York free from their corrupt hegemons in Manhattan and Chicago. Split off lower Illinois from Chicago and New York state from New York City. If we’re going to start giving corrupt cities like DC full statehood, we can set patriots free from communism and anarchy. That’s my suggestion if you want 60 votes for DC statehood.

    Another possible compromise is to extend DC’s statehood jurisdiction further into Virginia so that Virginia effectively becomes a red state, again. For all practical matters, northern Virginia is just a DC suburb anyway. Virginia’s red counties would love to be set free from the deep state.

    Here’s the only problem with my completely-fair suggestions: the corrupt hegemons that run these cities don’t want to give up their tax serfs in the counties. The Democrats are the ones who will refuse to compromise.

    1. The other reason the Democrats won’t compromise is that they don’t want the GOP to pick up more Senate seats anywhere, even if it balances out Democrat gains. This is about power for them. It’s not about representation or justice.

      1. Diogenes, the 50 Democratic senators represent 41 million more constituents than the 50 GOP senators do.

      2. PS Diogenes, those extra 41 million constituents would equal 12.5 US senators at the current total population (328 million/100 Senators = 3.28 million people per Senator average. 41 million/3.28 million = 12.5 Senators).

        1. Great post!

          So, what you’re saying is it’s a good thing the Founders developed a bicameral system, where one chamber is based on population and the other sets each state as equals. That way, the more populist states can’t readily steamroll the entire country? If they had wanted straight population-based representation, they could have just created an actual democracy and skipped the third branch altogether, as you well know.

          1. Yep, Joe understands all of that. He’s just pretending he doesn’t understand so he can make excuses.

            1. You need to stop consulting stupid talking point mills. Several plans with different principles of representation were floated at the convention. The bicameral plan adopted was a compromise between one that protected low population states (1 state 1 vote) and one which protected high population states (votes allocated by population). NB, the most populous state was Virginia. The apportionment formula for the House was a jerry-rigged compromise between the apportionment formula offered by the slave states and that offered by the free states.

          2. Anonymous, I responded to Diogenes post where he said:

            “The other reason the Democrats won’t compromise is that they don’t want the GOP to pick up more Senate seats anywhere, even if it balances out Democrat gains. This is about power for them. It’s not about representation or justice.”

            It is about representation and justice.

            The GOP has had 2 presidents in the last 20 years who a majority of voters rejected. They have now control of a SC where 5 of the 9 justices were appointed by these loser Presidents (one of those seats stolen from a twice elected President) and they have senate representation way out of proportion to the constituents they represent. So, how about you STFU about representation and justice.

        2. The House is the representative chamber; the Senate is the chamber of the states and a check on the House, and both are a check on the Executive.
          The Senate was created to guarantee “equal” representation for small states and protect their sovereignty, the House to provide “proportional” representation for all states. The Senate protects the interests of smaller states, like South Dakota, from predations by larger ones, like New York.
          “The necessity of a senate is not less indicated,” Madison wrote in No. 62 of The Federalist Papers, “by the propensity of all single and numerous assemblies to yield to the impulse of sudden and violent passions, and to be seduced by factious leaders into intemperate and pernicious resolutions.” Madison considered the Senate the chamber in which older and wiser representatives would be able to correct the lack of experience of those in the House, assure a stable and avoid “a mutable” government, and thereby guarantee “fidelity to the object of government, which is the happiness of the people,” and assure “a knowledge of the means by which that object can be best attained.”
          By protecting the residual sovereignty of the states, the Senate precludes the creation of a single large Republic, so it functions like the Electoral College. The Founding Fathers knew their history, so they feared the “mob” because they knew that demogagues could easily sway the demos.
          Whether making the District of Columbia a state would be a good thing is another matter. First, it is important to understand why the government we have is structured as it is — to prevent the rise of a dictator or tyrant, to preclude the formation of an oligarchy, and to assure that license and chaos do not take hold of government. Hence the dictator (Executive) checks the oligarchy (Senate) who rein in the mob (House), and one avoids the vicious circle of monarch to tyrant, nobility to oligarchy, democracy to license.
          The founders of the country, like all educated men and women of their era, knew Greek and Roman history, and they drew the appropriate lessons. If you want to understand why they designed the government as they did, begin with The Federalist Papers, then move on to Montequieu’s Spirit of the Laws, Machiavelli’s Discourses on Titus Livius, and Plutarch or some good scholarly histories of the Greek city states and Roman Republic.
          But please, do not try to argue that ‘pure’ democracy is a good thing. Just ask Socrates, or Alcibiades.

          1. Thanks for the besides the point lecture. I have not argued against a Senate that represents the states, but responding to a faux pious claim that Democrats don’t care about representation and justice. Given that what constitutes a state is a little arbitrary – 2 Dakotas that have a combined population of 1.5 million, so 4 Senators with a population not even half of the average senators constituency? – and so DC or PR statehood are entirely reasonable. The GOP only cares about maintaining their lopsided advantage there, and the same is true for the EC. Winner take all outcomes are not set in the constitution and result in random meaningless outcomes like W and Trump and almost Kerry in 2004 with less votes than W. If you can describe how exactly those votes protected some important principle, let’s hear it. You can’t. The SC? F…off. The GOP stole a seat and lucked out with 2 losers picking seats. That was no stroke of constitutional genius either, just raw political power that will be paid for sometime somehow. .

            1. Equal and proportional representation are complementary, not identical.
              Majorities only work when minorities are protected.
              You appear to believe that only proportional representation is democratic and that a majority has the right to dictate to minorities.
              That was not the opinion of the people who wrote the Constitution, nor is it mine.
              But you have a right to your opinion. What you do not have a right to is mine.

              1. What he actually believe is that anything that stands in the way of his faction has to go. What he actually wants is a function of his socially-sanctioned aggression.

    2. Diogenes, Biden counties are responsible for 70% of the nations GDP as per Forbes. I think you’re confused about who is supporting who.

              1. As I mentioned below, I live in one of those Biden counties, the largest in my state, and the real income earners–and taxpayers–mostly voted for Trump. They’re just outnumbered in this county by the projects downtown. Your statistics are subject to interpretation.

          1. Deco can do what Forbes, Brookings, and Gainesville refuse to do, which is check the production and income statistics for the counties.

            For the record, the use of production statistics in regard to county-level data is suboptimal because the most populous commuter belts (where about 30% of the population lives) have a mean of six counties with dense settlement appended to which are exurban counties as well. People commute from one to the other for work (they’re commuter belts and metropolitan statistical areas are defined by commuting patterns). The production is booked to workplaces in County A while the income is booked to households in County B (where their votes are booked also). This creates statistical anomalies as you have counties which appear impecunious in the use of production statistics when in fact their residents are plenty productive. They just earn in one place and live in another. In understanding the economic well-being of counties, personal income statistics is a more valid measure.

            Even just using production statistics, the math for your contention is impossible. You rank order counties according to production per capita (and, recall, production per worker or income per capita would be more valid metrics for rank ordering), you compute a running balance of domestic product, and you discover that 70% of the domestic product is booked to 817 counties where live 53% of the population. Unless you fancy > 100% of them voted for Biden, your thesis fails. The thing is they aren’t all Biden counties. The counties with the highest per capita product have a great deal of oil drilling and mining and few people. Others, like San Francisco, Manhattan, and DC, have masses of commuters.

            1. Since the analysis was not done on a per capita basis, counties with oil drilling which are red would of course be part of the 30% GDP Trump counties. There is no contradiction there. The analysis did not consider county population.

              1. No, you do the rank-ordering on a per capita basis to assemble the larges quantum of production you can in a given set of counties of a given population. You cannot assemble a set of counties which encompasses 70% of the domestic product with less than 53% of the population. I can explain something to you. I cannot comprehend it for you.

      1. I live in one of those Biden counties, the largest in my state, and the real income earners–and taxpayers–mostly voted for Trump. They’re just outnumbered in this county by the projects downtown. Your statistics are subject to interpretation.

          1. I know plumbers and electricians who make more than college graduates in, say, gender studies. I also expect gender-studies graduates to always be wrong about everything.

          2. Joe, bottom line with me, if you want to describe red state voters as stupid, ignorant, and broke, all you’re doing is making people resent you–and Hillary, since she foolishly said the same thing you’re saying. No big surprise she lost WI, PA, OH, and IA talking like that.

            This is not a constructive line of discussion for either of us.

            As for my suggesting Democrats don’t care about representation and justice, perhaps I got carried away with my rhetoric. Hopefully, the Democrats will prove me wrong.

            1. They won’t prove you wrong. The cause d’année is ‘Black Lives Matter’, which is promoted in a manner and which in turn promotes institutional disposition such that we have seen a 31% year-over-year increase in the murder rate (as well as seeing a mess of black merchants burned out by rioters). Lots of black lives don’t matter to those twits, and only a few renegades like Heather Mac Donald say ah yes or boo about it.

            2. Diogenes, I never start these red v blue attacks and am not in favor of dividing ourselves that way. I work with plenty of people from the red side and they are my friends as well. I an also certain nobody is going to secede and don’t favor it. This is one America, with many parts and I live and work in several of them. That’s our strength in my opinion. Let’s talk about something else.

              1. Diogenes, I never start these red v blue attacks

                The whole point of your activity here is to engage in red v. blue attacks. One personality problem you have is gross arrogance.

    3. I agree with most of what you said….but would describe my views as trading DC Statehood for installing an Electoral College system in all 50 existing States and exempting the new State of DC.

      That would accomplish exactly what you propose but make it nationwide.

      Use the County/Parish jurisdictions for the make up of the State EC’s…..and watch the nation once again be freed from the tyranny of large urban areas.

      1. Sounds interesting. I’m for any good compromise. The Democrats do not hold the moral high ground on DC statehood.

  7. I suggest a trade —

    Red states support D.C. statehood, in exchange for Blue states supporting Red states’ secession.

    1. Sure Sam. As per Forbes, Biden counties are responsible for 70% of the nation’s GDP.

      Who needs the dead weight and dead brains?

      1. Biden counties are responsible for 70% of the nation’s GDP.

        It was pointed out to you the last time how the people at Forbes either do not know how to read production statistics or are deliberately lying. And here you are recycling it, just like your nonsense ‘collusion has been proved’ meme.

        1. No Deco, that was not pointed out as it would be false. Fortune reported the same info. Obviously Trump voters aren’t super bright, and they are in fact less educated. It’s the source of their cultural resentment and attachment to Trump.

          Here’s the data, and a quote:

          “….Biden captured virtually all of the counties with the biggest economies in the country (depicted by the largest blue tiles in the nearby graphic), including flipping the few that Clinton did not win in 2016.

          By contrast, Trump won thousands of counties in small-town and rural communities with correspondingly tiny economies (depicted by the red tiles). Biden’s counties tended to be far more diverse, educated, and white-collar professional, with their aggregate nonwhite and college-educated shares of the economy running to 35% and 36%, respectively, compared to 16% and 25% in counties that voted for Trump….

          Blue and red America reflect two very different economies: one oriented to diverse, often college-educated workers in professional and digital services occupations, and the other whiter, less-educated, and more dependent on “traditional” industries….”

          https://www.brookings.edu/blog/the-avenue/2020/11/09/biden-voting-counties-equal-70-of-americas-economy-what-does-this-mean-for-the-nations-political-economic-divide/

          1. You’ve been shipping our factories to China for 40 years and then you ridicule poverty in red states. You are an ass, Joe.

            1. Diogenes, you have me confused with someone else.

              By the way, automation is largely responsible for job losses and it will only get worse.

              “The US did indeed lose about 5.6m manufacturing jobs between 2000 and 2010. But according to a study by the Center for Business and Economic Research at Ball State University, 85 per cent of these jobs losses are actually attributable to technological change — largely automation — rather than international trade…..”

              https://www.ft.com/content/dec677c0-b7e6-11e6-ba85-95d1533d9a62

              1. This problem has been going on for 40 years, and a lot of the damage was done by 2000. BTW, I want that 15% since 2000 back.

          2. No Deco, that was not pointed out as it would be false.

            It’s been explained to you multiple times in multiple ways. You continue to lie.

        2. “[T]he people at Forbes either do not know how to read production statistics or are deliberately lying.”

          Those stats, whether true or false, are completely beside the point.

          The fundamental issue is the relative economic freedom one can enjoy in states such as Florida and Texas — versus the suffocating statism of states such as California and New York.

          During the American Revolution, Great Britain obviously possessed far greater productive ability than did the Colonists. The Founders, though, were not motivated by a short-term desire for more tea. They fought for individual rights and economic freedom.

          Ditto now.

          I’d rather be a destitute free man than a rich slave.

          1. Fortunately for you Sam, you have those Biden counties carrying your “free man” ass.

            Talk is cheap. Do the secession or move to Costa Rica and show us you’re serious.

    2. Sam, I’ll go even further. Red counties support DC statehood in exchange for blue counties supporting red counties seceding. NY, IL, CA, WA, and OR would quickly be reduced to rump states with their arrogant backs to the sea.

      1. Actually, I’m not for secession, but the Democrats could always change my mind.

        I sometimes wonder if they want secession, they just want us to think it’s our idea.

  8. It’s about time! Failure to do this is nothing but a refusal to grant full citizenship to American citizens living in DC. We all know why there is push back. It’s time to make DC a state.

  9. You won’t hear this on talk-radio. If you cite the U.S. Constitution to uphold it’s 2nd Amendment gun rights, you can’t use that very same Constitution to deny citizens of DC all the rights of U.S. citizens. You can’t use it to subvert the electoral vote. You can’t use it to deny 14th Amendment rights to African-Americans, LGBT-Americans and other minority groups. It’s a package deal, it’s all or nothing!

    1. you can’t use that very same Constitution to deny citizens of DC all the rights of U.S. citizens.

      They are denied nothing but (1) a floor vote in the House of Representatives and (2) votes in the Senate. They have representations on House committees, and that’s more consequential than a floor vote. Retroceding the territory to Maryland would provide them with a floor vote in the House and participation in elections to the Senate. There’s a reason Democrats are not interested in retrocession.

      1. That is kinda of a big deal since Congress has complete control of the laws of the District, far more then they have over any state. They only have a city government because Congress allows them to. Thus in many ways what you minimize is in fact the most important thing.

        1. That is kinda of a big deal since Congress has complete control of the laws of the District, far more then they have over any state.

          They’ve had full home rule for 46 years. The Congress did impose a conservatorship when they had put themselves in a financial pickle. They DC government managed to do that even though the personal income per capita of DC exceeds that of any state. In general, the DC government is wretchedly incompetent and in general Congress is hands off.

      2. DC residents pay equal or higher taxes and have the constitutional right to “equal representation” as any other citizen (not almost equal). We could waive all taxes so DC residents live tax free or make them an equal state. Or Virginia and Maryland could annex most of the District of Columbia’s residential areas.

    1. The people running the WH and the Democrat Party, are no longer liberals or progressives. The new Party is led by radicals that will destroy America to gain and retain power. This is what dictators do.

    2. Since when is wanting to make sure US citizens have equal voting representation evil? It is a much stronger argument to say that denying them that is evil.

  10. Again, for better or worse, Congress does not have the discretion to do this. Maryland has a prior claim to the territory and it would make satisfactory sense to just retrocede the District. In 1950, about 2/3 of the population in the tract development around the capital lived in the District itself. The suburban tract my grandparents were living in (now a lush inner-ring suburb) was then a mile from the nearest transit stop. As we speak, nearly 85% of those living in the tract development around Washington are to be found in the suburban jurisdictions. DC is a fragment of that; Montgomery County (Md.), Prince George’s County (Md), and Fairfax County (Va.) have larger populations than DC. Note that for an 18 month period in 2001 and 2002 and then for a four year period running from 2011 to 2015, the Democrats controlled the Senate while the Republicans had the House. Funny how this just wasn’t an issue at that time.

    Note that none of our current states resemble DC at all, or ever did. They are all a mix of metropolitan-urban, small town, and countryside. They all had ample potential for new settlement at the time they were admitted. There are two states with smaller populations than DC. Since 1975, the population of one has grown by about 40%; the population of the other has grown by about 30%. Net population growth for DC has been close to nil. We could make some salutary modifications to the geography of provincial government in this country, but raw power grabs like this are a bad business. Since Democrats have no procedural principles left, they’re not capable of seeing that.

  11. Should DC become a state rather than a Federal zone, would it not be much easier for an incoming Administration to simply distribute Federal Agencies and their headquarters around the country? Energy to Texas, Interior to Colorado, Homeland Security to NY, FBI to Illinois, Social Security to FL as example? The Supreme Court, the House and the Senate might perhaps be among the few which should remain in close proximity. Having a nest of bureaucrats seems unnecessary with the communication systems available by which any agency which requires interaction may do so without crossing the street, which I suspect is not happening often now.

    Relocating Agencies would serve to break up the circle of high wages and low unemployment enjoyed by the surrounding counties of Maryland and Virginia and spread the opportunity among the other states. A review unemployment and income of MD and VA counties and the obvious lowering of such measures as you move from DC is stunning, and disturbing. There is a circle of wealth surrounding the citizens of DC which also separates citizens living outside the circle of such opportunity.

    The huge bonus is to also break up the nest of Lobbyists which prey on our Congressional Representatives and the Bureaucrats who influence legislation.

    The wealth held by the bureaucracy and influence peddlers is not helping the local community in DC. The community would be better served with your concept of Maryland and Virginia reclaiming that which is not Federal. Of course, the elites of MD and VA claiming the morality of statehood will fight this tooth and nail to prevent this, as they don’t really want the citizens of DC, only the cash!

    1. would it not be much easier for an incoming Administration to simply distribute Federal Agencies and their headquarters around the country? Energy to Texas, Interior to Colorado, Homeland Security to NY, FBI to Illinois, Social Security to FL as example?

      About 80% of the people working in the Washington commuter belt are not federal employees. If I’m not mistaken, north of 3/4 of the federal civilian employees in this country are field employees and not found in the Washington commuter belt. The share of military who are stationed around DC is lower still.

  12. All very interesting but you forgot one thing: this issue is not about constitutional niceties but raw political power.

    1. Dennis Bedard – Yes, indeed. If most of the D.C. residents were to identify as right-wingers, the GOP would be leading the effort and JT would be explaining why it’s best for the country for D.C. to be declared a state.

  13. Retrocession will never be accepted by Democrats, because the point of DC Statehood has never been about representation for DC residents, and always about packing the Senate by whatever means necessary.

  14. Best option would be to give DC residents voting rights in either Virginia and/or Maryland, in accordance with the land previously ceded to the District, or as you say, the modified retrocession plan

    1. The best thing is be to hand Maryland its land back and add as many House members as the associated population supports. Tax, National Guard, etc., etc. are relatively easy to transition. Have the federal government pay whatever costs are necessary.

      1. There won’t be any additional House seats, they’ve capped it at 435. So that would require yet another law change. I like the idea of retroceding to Maryland and redrawing the districts.

        1. The cap’s been in place since 1912. You can modify the cap. Not really necessary in this case. Retrocession would mean that Maryland gets an extra seat and some other jurisdiction loses one. That sort of thing happens every time there’s a reapportionment.

  15. I will make a Genteman’s wager here…..the State of Maryland should hold a Referendum to decide whether to take the District as Turley suggests….and that the overwhelming response would be to flatly say….NO!

    The District National Guard would have to go to the State of Maryland….and that would not be welcomed either.

    Then the small pesky issue of State, County, and Property Taxes would have to be worked out.

    The wise action is to leave well enough alone…..we do not need a City State fed by the Federal Government.

    More importantly….the Democrat Party’s effort to take permanent control of the Federal Governmen by such means (knowing the next move shall be trying for Statehood for Puerto Rico, Guam, and perhaps some other Islands in the Pacific) must be stopped.

    The Democrats must start thinking about the People’s business and not merely seizing power any and every way possible.

    1. The wise action is to leave well enough alone…

      You’ve confused wisdom with learned helplessness.

  16. Tyranny of the majority.

    Way to build concensus.

    Actually, it is the perfect way to build an effective opposition.

    1. You don’t need consensus. You need regular rules and fair procedures. The Democrats play calvinball, all the time and with respect to everything.

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