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Aegis
02-26-2009, 2:36 PM
I read that the senate is close to or has passed a bill giving DC residents representatives in congress. If this is true, how does it impact the Heller decision? If congress is in essence making Washington DC a state via legislation, then is Heller automatically biding to the states?

sierratangofoxtrotunion
02-26-2009, 3:07 PM
DC has a representative in the House, Eleanor Norton. Do you have a bill number?

Whiskey_Sauer
02-26-2009, 3:56 PM
DC has a representative in the House, Eleanor Norton. Do you have a bill number?

Ms. Holmes Norton is not a voting member, if I recall correctly.

DDT
02-26-2009, 3:57 PM
http://www.cbsnews.com/blogs/2009/02/26/politics/politicalhotsheet/entry4832402.shtml

How this is constitutional I do not know. The fact that the house must know that it isn't constitutional and isn't slowed down in the least by that fact is truly scary.

Whiskey_Sauer
02-26-2009, 4:06 PM
http://www.cbsnews.com/blogs/2009/02/26/politics/politicalhotsheet/entry4832402.shtml

How this is constitutional I do not know. The fact that the house must know that it isn't constitutional and isn't slowed down in the least by that fact is truly scary.

What isn't Constitutional? As much as I disagree with what would happen politically, I see no reason why U.S. citizens should not have voting representation in Congress.

Harrison_Bergeron
02-26-2009, 4:15 PM
I'd like to know why it is unconstitutional as well. I know that "no taxation without representation" is one of those phrases that gets tossed around as being part of the Constitution when it isn't, but it is still wrong, and was still one of the ideas that our country was founded on.

To the OP, they are not granting statehood, so I doubt that DC would be upgraded from its federal territory status. Even if it was to get statehood, when SCOTUS made their ruling it wasn't.

I think the bill does sound bogus though. The census is in 1 year, and they feel the need to give Utah a vote based on the numbers of the last census? What the hell is that? Modern politics suck, we need to do away with this two party system nonsense.

yellowfin
02-26-2009, 4:15 PM
If they cared about constitutionality, 90% of the junk they've done wouldn't have come about due to the 9th and 10th amendments.

Pvt. Cowboy
02-26-2009, 4:18 PM
What isn't Constitutional? As much as I disagree with what would happen politically, I see no reason why U.S. citizens should not have voting representation in Congress.

Neither do I, that's why DC's representation ought to belong to Maryland.

Washington DC is, for all practical purposes, South-West Baltimore. What are they? Ten miles apart? You can hardly tell one from the other.

Democrats are setting the stage to give a single artificial city -- administered completely by the Federal government -- two new US Senators and however many House Reps they warrant without any concern as to the Constitutionality of it.

Gosh sakes, it was this time last year that liberal Democrats were shrieking that DC residents (and the entire rest of the nation, mind you) had no individual gun rights at all because "DC isn't a state", but now that chocolate Jesus has come they're saying that the voters of the District Of Columbia deserve voting US Senators.

Colt
02-26-2009, 5:45 PM
What isn't Constitutional? As much as I disagree with what would happen politically, I see no reason why U.S. citizens should not have voting representation in Congress.

Way back when, it was decided (I believe it's in the Constitution) that the national capitol could not be located in one of the States (hence, Washington, District of Columbia). The Constitution says that Members of Congress are elected by the people of the States. Since D.C. is not a State, they can't have an elected Representative. Ms. Holmes Norton is a delegate, not a Representative. She has no vote.

Even if this passes, it will need to go to Supreme Court, I bet.

berto
02-26-2009, 5:56 PM
chocolate Jesus

HA!

And you're totally right that DC representation should be part of the MD delegation.

DDT
02-26-2009, 6:54 PM
I'd like to know why it is unconstitutional as well.

Article 1 section 2 of the US constitution is very clear that all representatives shall be named by the peoples of the several states and that the named representative must be a resident of the state they represent. Since DC is not a state it would be unconstitutional in a very blatant way for them to get a seat in the house. If you do not have to be a state could the UN also get a voting representative or 2? How about Puerto Rico? Where would it end?

no state = no representative. The District was designed specifically with this intent. There is no way to argue around this from an originalist perspective.

DDT
02-26-2009, 6:57 PM
HA!

And you're totally right that DC representation should be part of the MD delegation.

Nope, according to the constitution delegates are distributed based upon the population of the states and the people of the states must name their representatives. This means that you can't apportion more delegates to MD or VA based on the population of DC and you can't have non-residents voting in the MD or VA elections.

Wasn't this all in 8th grade civics class? Maybe we should not allow anyone to actually have a primary residence in the capitol city. Just the royal government officials who also have residences in their home states. It would be like our own version of the forbidden city.

Publius
02-26-2009, 8:08 PM
I read that the senate is close to or has passed a bill giving DC residents representatives in congress. If this is true, how does it impact the Heller decision? If congress is in essence making Washington DC a state via legislation, then is Heller automatically biding to the states?

First of all, giving DC a voting representative is plainly unconstitutional, as others have pointed out. The Congressional Research Service did a nonpartisan report on the issue a couple of years ago and came to the same conclusion. But even if DC were legally made a state (it'd take a constitutional amendment), it wouldn't automatically make Heller apply to the states, because the particular law at issue in Heller was not at that time a state law. Similar issues have come up in the past (back before the flag had 50 stars) when territories transitioned to statehood.

Sam
02-26-2009, 8:52 PM
Kick this bill out ASAP.

Harrison_Bergeron
02-27-2009, 10:38 AM
Taxation without representation was the main cause for the American Revolution, so it would seem safe to say that in the U.S. that that is wrong as well as acting outside the Constitution, so TwoR would probably go into the un-enumerated rights column, so would those against DC having a vote object to them not having to pay federal taxes? I'm not trying to stir the pot, I just think that it is very obvious that DC residents are getting the shaft, and DC does need residents, so I think something should be done to rectify the situation.

Is there any word on who in Congress is opposed to DC getting a vote? Do they have the votes to pass an amendment?

Publius
02-27-2009, 11:20 AM
Taxation without representation was the main cause for the American Revolution, so it would seem safe to say that in the U.S. that that is wrong as well as acting outside the Constitution, so TwoR would probably go into the un-enumerated rights column, so would those against DC having a vote object to them not having to pay federal taxes? I'm not trying to stir the pot, I just think that it is very obvious that DC residents are getting the shaft, and DC does need residents, so I think something should be done to rectify the situation.

The federal district was never intended to have a large permanent population. I for one would not object to having them not pay federal taxes as compensation for lack of federal representation. But the vast majority of the current residents have nothing to do with the purposes of the federal district, so the bulk of its territory should simply be returned to Maryland -- just as the portion of the district on the other side of the Potomac was returned to Virginia many years ago.

Glock22Fan
02-27-2009, 11:56 AM
Taxation without representation has always been a fact of life for legal resident aliens. One of the things that really pi$$ed me off when I was of that status.

Librarian
02-27-2009, 12:18 PM
Maybe we should not allow anyone to actually have a primary residence in the capitol city. Just the royal government officials who also have residences in their home states. It would be like our own version of the forbidden city.

Conceptually right, practically wrong.

I have a cousin who worked in the Pentagon, lived out Arlington way. (Some PhD, Army training thing). That position paid enough to cover the commute and the residence in the 'burbs, and quite a number of the 'professional' and legislative jobs probably are adequate in that way.

But the pay for the janitorial staff and the restaurant workers and the clerk/typists and all the 'support' functions for national and city government don't meet that burden.

That's only a problem if we insist that the place where those folks live be that extra-state conclave "DC".

I think the need for a separate federal district has run its course. I kind of like some form of 'give DC to Maryland', with 'no, you do not get to tax Federal property'. Maybe keep the Mall, the White House, the Capitol area as a kind of 'theme park' (give it to Disney to manage - now they know 'mickey mouse'! - and a lot of the regular Federal denizens of the area are pretty cartoon-ish).

7x57
02-27-2009, 12:46 PM
I think the need for a separate federal district has run its course. I kind of like some form of 'give DC to Maryland',

Good God, do you hate Maryland that much? Why would they want the worst cesspool of crime and oppressive mismanagement in the nation? That's like offering to give Superfund sites (only) "back to the Indians." :chris:

Though, if we give them a "get out of jail free" card to clean up the DC council and government with immunity from Due Process and everything else for say five years, I'm all over it. Kind of a political superfund site. I'd be totally happy to start by releasing 100 rabid wolverines in the halls o' government. :43:

Probably nothing less would make a dent in the machine.

7x57

Liberty1
02-27-2009, 12:55 PM
I kind of like some form of 'give DC to Maryland'...

Give it to Virginia. DC needs Va's lack of gun laws. Open Carry M1 grand with 1911 stong side on the Mall (In My Land...I have a dream!).

Kz5GLoX-fCU

Librarian
02-27-2009, 1:10 PM
Good God, do you hate Maryland that much? Why would they want the worst cesspool of crime and oppressive mismanagement in the nation?

They have experience, and I can't figure out how to give it to Jersey:

DC - 2007 pop: 588,292, violent crimes: 8,320, property crimes: 27,063

Baltimore - 2007 pop: 624,237, violent crimes: 10,182, property crimes: 29,939

And MD rather than VA, because of the river. Contiguous boundaries and that sort of thing.

7x57
02-27-2009, 1:25 PM
They have experience, and I can't figure out how to give it to Jersey:


I'd be very worried about the effects of adding the DC voters however. It could tip the MD gun laws toward the uncivilized states. Does MD really have to take one for the team like that?


And MD rather than VA, because of the river. Contiguous boundaries and that sort of thing.

Two words: upper peninsula. If that is a big problem, Michigan needs serious modifications.

7x57

Librarian
02-27-2009, 1:33 PM
I'd be very worried about the effects of adding the DC voters however. It could tip the MD gun laws toward the uncivilized states. Does MD really have to take one for the team like that?
I really did want to give DC to Jersey...
Two words: upper peninsula. If that is a big problem, Michigan needs serious modifications.

7x57I used to live in Michigan, and that was exactly my model to avoid. (Then again, the Youpers are pretty nice folks, on the whole). The "Toledo War (http://www.geo.msu.edu/geogmich/toledo_war.html)" had a very odd resolution.