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Democrat Senator Joe Manchin Opposes D.C. Statehood, Dealing A Major Blow To Democrats In A 50-50 Senate


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Washington D.C might not become a state after all.

Earlier in the month, the House passed a bill that would make D.C. a state but the chances of it passing the Senate just got slimmer after Democrat Senator of West Virginia Joe Manchin said he opposes the new bill that would grant D.C. statehood.

Manchin believes D.C. shouldn’t gain statehood by a single act of Congress but rather statehood should be granted by a constitutional amendment.

Right now the house is split 50-50 so Manchin choosing to vote against D.C.’s statehood will help Republicans big time.

The AP News covered Manchin’s decision:

A long-shot bid to pass legislation that would make the District of Columbia the nation’s 51st state got a little longer on Friday.

Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia said that he opposes unilateral action by Congress to make the nation’s capital a state and that he believes it needs to be done through a constitutional amendment. He said prior Republican and Democratic administrations thought the same thing.

“They all came to the same conclusion. If Congress wants to make D.C. a state, it should propose a constitutional amendment,” Manchin said in an interview with the West Virginia MetroNews radio network. “It should propose a constitutional amendment and let the people of America vote.”

Earlier this month, the House approved a bill strictly along party lines to make the District of Columbia a state with one representative and two senators, while a tiny sliver of land including the White House, the U.S. Capitol and the National Mall would remain a federal district.

USA Today covered the story too:

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., told a West Virginia radio station Friday he opposes a just-passed House bill to grant the District of Columbia statehood, dealing a blow against Democratic efforts to make the nation’s capital the 51st state.

Citing conclusions reached by past administrations, Manchin said the proper way to decide D.C’s future is through an amendment to the Constitution and not simply by passing a law that would be challenged in the Supreme Court.

Amending the U.S. Constitution is a tall hurdle. At least two-thirds of lawmakers in both houses of Congress must first approve the proposed amendment. Then, legislatures in at least three-fourths of the states (38) then have to approve it to take effect.

“They should propose a constitutional amendment and let the people of America vote,” he told Hoppy Kercheval from WV Metro News. Manchin did not say in the interview whether he thinks D.C. should be a state.

Most Democrats claim the reason they want D.C. to gain statehood is because D.C. residents are receiving “taxation without representation” but the reality is Dems just want two more Democrats in the Senate.



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