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Timeline - 214 Years of the District of Columbia's Efforts to Restore Self-Government E-mail

The residents of what is now the District of Columbia lost their full democratic rights to self-government and a government of, by and for the people over 200 years ago. Ever since then, they have been demanding that Congress restore the full rights of American citizenship to residents of our national capital. Below is an updated timeline of the District of Columbia's efforts to restore self-government.

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What to Do for D.C. Statehood this month! E-mail

Congress Disses D.C. Again - see article on H.R. 7 below.


Educate Congress and Get Co-Sponsors for the New Columbia Admission Act

D.C. Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton introduced a new statehood bill on January 15, 2013. The New Columbia Admission Act, H.R. 292, had 15 co-sponsors when it was introduced: Representatives Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Madeline Bordallo (D-Guam), Donna Christensen (D-Virgini Islands), William Lacy Clay (D-MO), Steve Cohen (D-TN), John Conyers (D-MI), Keith Ellison (D-MN), Eni Falemavaega (D-American Samoa), Sam Farr (D-CA), Michael Honda (D-CA), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Grace Napolitano (D-CA), Jared Polis (D-CO), Charles Rangel (D-NY), and Bobby Rush (D-IL). It now has 66 co-sponsors, including: Representatives Pedro Pierluisi (D-PR), Judy Chu (D-CA), Robert C. "Bobby" Scott (D-VA), Barbara Lee (D-CA), Gerald Connolly (D-VA), Raul M. Grijalva (D-AZ), Theodroe E. Deutch (D-FL), Andre Carson (D-IN), John Lewis (D-GA), Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY), Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL), James P. McGovern (D-MA), Yvette D. Clarke (D-NY), Louise McIntosh Slaughter (D-NY), Ruben Hinojosa (D-TX), Henry C. (Hank) Johnson, Jr. (D-GA), Janice D. Schakowsky (D-IL), Sander M. Levin (D-MI), G. K. Butterfield (D-NC), Corrine Brown (D-FL), Donna F. Edwards (D-MD), Maxine Waters (D-CA), Ed Pastor (D-AZ), Karen Bass (D-CA), Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (D-GA), Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), James E. Clyburn (D-SC), Danny K. Davis (D-IL), Marcia L. Fudge (D-OH), Hakeem S. Jeffries (D-NY), Robin L. Kelly (D-IL), Gregory W. Meeks (D-NY), Cedric L. Richmond (D-LA), Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS),  Frederica S. Wilson (D-FL), Jose E. Serrano (D-NY), Jared Huffman (D-CA), George Miller (D-CA), Juan Vargas (D-CA), Luis Gutierrez (D-IL), Joyce Beatty (D-OH), Marc A. Veasey (D-TX), Donald M. Payne, Jr. (D-NJ), Terri A. Sewell (D-AL), Tim Ryan (D-OH), Gwen Moore (D-WI), Chaka Fattah (D-PA), Paul Tonko (D-NY), Timothy J. Walz (D-MN), Diana DeGette (D-CO) and Betty McCollum (D-MN).

In her introductory statement, Congresswoman Norton said: "To be content with less than statehood is to concede the equality of citizenship that is the birthright of our residents as citizens of the United States. It is too late for the residents of the District of Columbia to make such a concession as we approach the 212th year in our fight for equal treatment in our country. This bill is the first I file in the 113th Congress, and it reaffirms our determination to obtain each and every right enjoyed by citizens of the United States by becoming the 51st State of the Union."
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On January 25, 2013, Senator Thomas Carper, Chair of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee that has jurisdiction over the District of Columbia, introduced S. 132, the New Columbia Admission Act, a companion bill to H.R. 292, introduced by D.C. Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton on January 15, 2013.  S.132 was originally co-sponsored by three senior Democratic senators, Senators Richard Durbin (D-IL), Patty Murray (D-WA) and Barbara Boxer (D-CA). It now has 15 current co-sponsors, including Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Barbara A. Mukulski (D-MD), Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD), Harry Reid (D-NV), Bernard Sanders (I-VT), Christopher Coons (D-DE), Charles E. Schumer (D-NY), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), and Cory A. Booker (D-NJ) have agreed to co-sponsor the bill. Senator William M. Cowan (D-MA) was a cosponsor, but after a special election, he was replaced by Senator Edward Markey who is not yet a cosponsor.
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Please write or call these Members of Congress and thank them for supporting the New Columbia Admission Act!

We urgently need your help to get more co-sponsors for these statehood bills. If you would like to help get more co-sponsors for either the House bill or Senate bill, please contact Elinor Hart ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) or Josh Burch ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ). They are organizing a lobby day for April 16, 2014, D.C. Emancipation Day, our only local holiday which celebrates President Lincoln's signing on April 16, 1862 of the D.C. Compensated Emancipation Act which freed 3,100 slaves in the District of Columbia.

Emancipation Day Celebration

Celebrate D.C. Emancipation Day, April 16, 2014, by joining the Statehood Lobby Day (see above) or attending the Emancipation Day parade which begins at 11 a.m. at 4th and Pennsylvania Avenue, NW and goes to Freedom Plaza at 14th and Pennsylvania Avenue. If you would like to join statehood supporters and march in the parade, join us at 4th and Pennsylvania Avenue NW between 9 and 10 a.m.

Free Emancipation Day seminars will be held at the Wilson Building (14th and Pennsylvania Avenue NW) beginning at 1:30 p.m.: The Proclamation Workshop with the Honorable Frank Smith of the African-American Civil War Museum at 1:30 in room 500; A History of Emancipation Day: DC and Around the Globe with Peter Hanes at 1:30 P.m. in room 412; The Fight for Statehood with journalist Mark Plotkin at 2:45 p.m. in room 500; and Emancipation and What it Means Today with Dr. Elizabeth Clark Lewis at 2:45 p.m. in room 214.

The free DC Emancipation Day concert with Talib Kwell, Raheem DeVaughn, MC Lyte, Arrested Development, Doug E Fresh, DJ Kool, J. Ivy, DC's own Black Alley Band, the West Virginia State University Jazz Ensemble and more will be held at 4 p.m. at Freedom Plaza.

The day ends with fireworks at 8 p.m. at Freedom Plaza.

Statehood Lobby Day runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., depending upon whether you help in the Senate or the House. (See above)

Demand that Council Fund D.C.'s Statehood Delegation

Help make New Columbia the 51st state and have D.C. shed its place as "last in liberty"!

Unlike other jurisdictions that have elected a statehood or "shadow" delegation to head their statehood effort, D.C. has never funded our delegation, except for authorizing D.C. taxpayers to donate to the statehood fund. In fact, until 2008, Congress prohibited the District government from funding efforts to get statehood or voting rights.  Unfortunately, the only funding mecahnism that has existed was a voluntary taxpayer check-off on D.C. income tax forms, which has now expired. Unless our government decides to really support our statehood delegation, any words in support of statehood are just that - WORDS. After over two centuries, the people of D.C. must demand ACTION. With many Council Members either running for re-election or for Mayor, now is the time to make our voices heard.

The D.C. Council's Committee of the Whole held a hearing on BIll 20-0171, the D.C. Statehood Advocacy Act, on Thursday, July 11, 2013. The Act was introduced by Council Members Vincent Orange, Jim Graham, Marion Barry, Anita Bonds, and Yvette Alexander and cosponsored by Council Member Kenyan McDuffie. It would authorize a total of $1,105,000 for compensation for the Statehood Senators and Representative ($35,000 each member), their staff ($75,000 total each member), programming, including a website and annual symposium on statehood ($75,000 total each member), retaining a media firm ($400,000) and a Congressional Affairs firm to lobby Congress ($150,000).Numerous statehood activists testified. Their testimony is posted on this website. See the articles below.

A group of statehood activists drafted and submitted a statehood consensus substitute bill that would guarantee that all funds appropriated would be used only to support STATEHOOD. In addition, it would authorize each member of our statehood Congressional delegation to be compensated at the rate of $75,000 a year. Given that Council Members are paid $125,000 for "part-time" positions, this is a very reasonable amount to pay those whom we expect to work both locally and nationally to regain our liberty. In addition, the statehood consensus substitute bill would increase funding for each member's staffing and office expenses to $175,000. In all, the proposed bill would increase the total appropraition by $360,000 to $1.465 million -- only a little more than 1/100th of a penny for every dollar in the District's fiscal year 2014 budget! This is a small price to pay to regain our right to govern ourselves. The text of the proposed substitute bill can be found on this website.

Please contact the members of the D.C. Council and urge them to support the statehood consensus substitute bill to Bill 20-0171 and promptly fund our Statehood Delegation for fiscal year 2014 and 2015. The New Columbia Admission Act has been gaining support in both the House and Senate, but without more resources, it will be for naught. As of November 14, 2013, there are 66 cosponsors of the House bill, H.R. 292, and sixteen* on the Senate bill, S. 132 (*Sen. Cowan of Massachusetts has been replaced by Sen. Markey, who is not yet a cospnsor, but Cowan has not been taken off the list). In the meanwhile, supporters of statehood for Puerto Rico, which has generously financed its statehood effort have 130 cosponsors on their bill, H.R. 2000.


Listen to "Shadow Politics" with D.C. Sen. Michael Brown Sunday 7 p.m.

D.C. Senator Michael D. Brown with special Co-Host Kathleen Gomez has a weekly internet radio talk show on BBSRadio.com (station #2) on Sundays from 7 to 8 p.m. EDT. The call-in numbers are: 888-429-5471 (toll free US/Canada); 530-413-9537 (line 1); 530-763-1594 (line 2); 530-763-1594(line 3); 530-763-0341 (line 4); SKYPE: BBSRadio2. They celebrated one year on the air on April 13, 2014!

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Fight for D.C. Statehood! E-mail

No where else, but in our nation's capital, do Americans lose their democratic rights merely because of their choice of residence. No where else do American citizens have all the responsibilities of citizenship, but few of the rights.

District citizens pay full federal taxes and serve in the military and die for our country but have no say in whether we go to war, what those taxes are, who serves on our federal courts or in the President's cabinet, or whether the United States should enter into various treaties and international obligations. We can't even spend our own local tax money freely. Congress is implicitly our "state legislature" and does whatever it wants here, even things it would not dare to impose on their constituents back in their home states.

To find out how you can help, please read more.

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D.C. Businesses Support Statehood - Please Patronize Them E-mail

The following D.C. businesses support D.C. statehood: Fleet Feet, the Cleveland Park Valet, and Grand Central. Please give them your business and thank them for supporting full democracy for the people of the District of Columbia.

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D.C. Statehood Rap E-mail

Washington Post reporter David Nakamura covered D.C.'s 2009 Emancipation Day and D.C. rapper Rasi Caprice's rap "Free D.C." It should be the D.C. statehood anthem. To listen, read more.

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