Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton & Senator Joe Lieberman introduce a D.C. Statehood Bill
|| 4/1/2009 || 11:10 am || + Render A Comment || ||
Upon hearing that the Justice Department has found the District of Columbia House Voting Rights Act of 2009 to be unconstitutional, this morning Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) and Senator Joe Lieberman (I-CT) introduced a D.C. Statehood bill to Congress.
This bill will make the nearly 600,000 citizens of America’s capital city equal to those in every other state in America. The legislation will allow District residents to elect two senators & at least one member of the House of Representatives. It will also grant the residents complete budget autonomy, control over the penal system, and allow residents to vote for their own district attorney. The bill also shrinks what is considered the “Seat of Government” to the area around the United States Capitol and National Mall to allow Congress to retain some control over the District of Columbia.
“I’m tired of being treated like a second-class congresswoman,” said Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton this morning at the press conference, “and D.C. Statehood is the only route to full equality.” She went on to say that she was pressured by the high-profile advocacy group DC Vote to push for partial representation because they wanted to make sure D.C. only has one vote in Congress. She concluded, “they didn’t want to have to change their name to DC Votes.”
Former vice-presidential candidate Senator Lieberman introduced the Senate’s version of the bill that contains a unique compromise. Unlike previous D.C. Statehood legislation, it contains a provision that prevents D.C. residents from electing two senators from the same political party.
“As an independent, I understand the importance of partisanship and the current view of Washington, DC is that the residents only vote for candidates in the Democratic Party.” By including this controversial provision, Lieberman hopes to win over Republican leadership who fear that the senators will always come from the Democratic party. The DC Home Rule Charter already contains a similar provision for a portion of the At-Large City Councilmembers to be from minor political parties and this practice will be continued in the DC Statehood bill.
In order to help District residents understand the importance of what D.C. statehood will provide, this evening ACLU and many other human rights groups are hosting a teach-in & free concert on the steps of the U.S. Capitol. Their goal is to educate District residents on the benefits of D.C. statehood.
Below are two different flyers for tonight’s event at the U.S. Capitol:
UPDATE: In case you didn’t figure it out, this entry was my April Fool’s Day joke. While the event at the U.S. Capitol was real, the introduction of the D.C. Statehood Bill was a farce. I do, however, contend that Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton should stop wasting her time on the DC Voting Rights Act.
Washington Post Video of last night’s Statehood Forum
|| 2/6/2009 || 11:55 pm || Comments Off on Washington Post Video of last night’s Statehood Forum || ||
Last night attended the DC Statehood Green Party’s forum called “DC Statehood, Now Is Our Time.” The event featured the entire elected shadow delegation as well as two city councilmembers and other leaders of this civil rights struggle. I also recorded much of the event, but I haven’t put a video together yet.
Hamil Harris from the Washington Post who made the video above, also wrote a brief write-up of the event if you are interested.
My favorite snippet:
Charles Cassell, who chaired of the DC Statehood Constitutional Convention during the early years of Home Rule, said the late activist Julius Hobson would be upset had he lived to see this day.
The American Flag in a 51 Star Configuration with One Star Removed
|| 12/16/2008 || 1:08 am || Comments Off on The American Flag in a 51 Star Configuration with One Star Removed || ||
Lately I’ve read a couple articles related to DC becoming America’s 51st state. While I’m wholeheartedly in favor of this prospect, two nights ago I decided to make an American flag showing my frustration with the fact that this route is not currently being pursued.
Above is a static public domain flag I found on WIkipedia by Gunter Küchler that I decided to modify showing what an American flag could look like, but with one star (New Columbia) removed.
Below are the animated versions of the flag that I produced to highlight the lack of the 51st star on America’s flag:
Third of representation a start, but not enough
|| 12/5/2006 || 11:14 am || Comments Off on Third of representation a start, but not enough || ||
In today’s Washington Times:
In honor of the bill before Congress that provides a congressional vote for the District in the House of Representatives, Statehood Green Party advocate Nikolas Schiller has designed a new license plate: “Taxation with 1/3 Representation.”
Read the rest of the article:
Salt Lake Tribune covers the D.C. Colonist
|| 9/17/2006 || 7:45 pm || Comments Off on Salt Lake Tribune covers the D.C. Colonist || ||
From the Salt Lake Tribune:
Much of Thursday’s hearing focused on the district’s fight for representation in the House, and several people in the audience wore stickers with the number “51,” referring to their hopes to make Washington the 51st state.
One resident even donned a Revolutionary period costume, complete with tri-corner hat, to protest the district’s lack of representation. Nikolas Schiller said he wore the purple garb to “highlight the fact that D.C. residents are still living in a colony,” because they are being taxed by the government without representation.
read the rest of the article:
ABC 7 Covers the D.C. Colonist…
|| 9/16/2006 || 9:24 pm || Comments Off on ABC 7 Covers the D.C. Colonist… || ||
albeit for a brief moment outside with the largest DC flag…
it’s so annoying when they have 30 minutes of footage, but cut it down to 5 seconds. I wish I could have that footage. It’s not like the footage will be used anytime soon….Sam and his camerawoman were the only news crew to cover the antics outside two hours before the hearing began.
OSCE Parliamentary Assembly adopts Washington Declaration
|| 7/5/2005 || 9:55 pm || Comments Off on OSCE Parliamentary Assembly adopts Washington Declaration || ||
From the Final Declaration (page 8 ):
58. Urges participating states to organize their systems for the recording of civil status and census information, in conformity with international human rights standards so as to move towards an optimal degree of reliability, to guarantee the individual right of vote to all citizens and calls on the Congress of the United States to adopt such legislation as may be necessary to grant the residents of Washington, D.C. equal voting rights in their national legislature in accordance with its human dimension commitments;
This paragraph is our collective win! All of my most recent civil rights activism has been dedicated to making sure that this pararaph became a reality.
Via the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly: