Friday Question of the Day – Retrocession?

retrocession council of dc
graphic via Council of DC

“Dear PoPville,

With all the talk about Jason Chaffetz bringing up it up again, could you do a poll about Retrocession? I know it’s a touchy subject, but I personally support it. I’ve lived in the district for almost 10 years and hate not having full representation. I know there’re many who’ve been here far longer and have a real sense of pride about being independent. I just think the DC political establishment has more to gain by selling the false hope of statehood than by advocating for a viable solution.


Here’s a good Wikipedia page on DC voting rights that talks about it too. I just came across this guy David Krucoff who started a group called Douglass County, MD. Here’s a Post op-ed he co-wrote last year about it.
The 23rd amendment would probably have to be changed too, possibly reducing the electoral college by DC’s 3 votes. Maryland would most likely gain a representative taken away from a red state, but this would be more than offset by the loss of our reliably Democratic votes for President. This could be why it’s usually only talked about by Republicans in Congress. You could increase the size of the House at least temporarily as has been done in the past. That would put the votes up for grabs nationally.”

While we’re on the topic, side note from Councilmember Mary Cheh’s office:

“Members of Congress are quickly moving to pass a measure to prevent the District of Columbia’s Death with Dignity Act from becoming law. This effort is led by Congressman Jason Chaffetz, Chairman of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee, who represents Utah’s 3rd Congressional District. Overturning this bill and superseding a local decision without so much as holding a public hearing, contacting the District’s elected leaders, or speaking to our residents raises the concern that the door will be open to future challenges to our right to local, self-governance.

We must defend our autonomy and find creative ways to express dissent against Congressional overreach. Already we understand Chaffetz’s office recently changed his office’s phone line after a barrage of calls by residents expressing displeasure with his meddling in local affairs. In addition to our local efforts, District residents can engage their own network of family and friends across the country to speak up on our behalf and demand that Congress leave the District alone.

Below is a list of Republican Congressmen from states with death with dignity laws. Of anyone in the House, perhaps they will be most sympathetic to our situation. Please share this list with your network, forward this email, and ask others to contact Congress. Perhaps Congressional Representatives will not listen to District residents; but, it will be difficult to ignore the phone calls, Tweets (#HandsOffDC), mail, and office visits of their own constituents on our behalf.

Congressman Jason Chaffetz, Chairman of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee

Twitter: @jasoninthehouse

Email link: https://chaffetz.house.gov/contact/

Phone: (202) 225-7751 extenion option 3 or 4

Washington, D.C. Office:

2236 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515

Republican Members of the House from Death with Dignity States

Oregon:

Greg Walden

Twitter: @repgregwalden

Email link: https://walden.house.gov/contact-greg/email-me

Phone: (202) 225-6730

Washington, D.C. Office:

2185 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

 

Washington:

Jamie Herrera Butler

Twitter: @HerreraBeutler

Email link: http://herrerabeutler.house.gov/contact/

Phone: (202) 225-3536

Washington, D.C. Office:

1107 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Dan Newhouse

Twitter: @RepNewhouse

Email link: https://newhouse.house.gov/contact

Phone: (202) 225-5816

Washington, D.C. Office:

1318 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

 

Cathy McMorris Rodgers

Twitter: @cathymcmorris

Email link: https://mcmorris.house.gov/contact/

Phone: (202) 225-2006

Washington, D.C. Office:

1314 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, D.C. 20515

Dave Reichert

Twitter: @davereichert

Email link: https://reichert.house.gov/contact-me/email-me

Phone: (202) 225-7761

Washington, D.C. Office:

1127 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

 

Montana:

Ryan Zinke

Twitter: @RepRyanZinke

Email link: https://zinke.house.gov/contact

Phone: (202) 225-3211

Washington, D.C. Office:

1419 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

California:

Doug LaMalfa

Twitter: @RepLaMalfa

Email link: https://lamalfa.house.gov/contact/email-me

Phone: (202) 225-3076

Washington, D.C. Office:

322 Cannon House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Tom McClintock

Twitter: @RepMcClintock

Email link: https://mcclintock.house.gov/contact/email-me

Phone: (202) 225-2511

Washington, D.C. Office:

2312 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Col. Paul Cook

Twitter: @RepPaulCook

Email link: http://cookforms.house.gov/contact/

Phone: (202) 225-5861

Washington, D.C. Office:

1222 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Jeff Denham

Twitter: @RepJeffDenham

Email link: https://denham.house.gov/contact-me/email-me

Phone: (202) 225-4540

Washington, D.C. Office:

1730 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

David G. Valadao

Twitter: @RepDavidValadao

Email link: http://valadao.house.gov/contact/

Phone: (202) 225-4695

Washington, D.C. Office:

1728 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, D.C. 20515

Devin Nunes

Twitter: @Rep_DevinNunes

Email link: https://nunes.house.gov/contactform/

Phone: (202) 225-2523

Washington, D.C. Office:

1013 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Kevin McCarthy

Twitter: @GOPLeader

Email link: https://kevinmccarthy.house.gov/contact/email-me

Phone: (202) 225-2915

Washington, D.C. Office:

2421 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Steve Knight

Twitter: @RepresentativeSteveKnight

Email link: http://knight.house.gov/contact/email/

Phone: (202) 225-1956

Washington, D.C. Office:

1023 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Ed Royce

Twitter: @RepEdRoyce

Email link: http://royce.house.gov/contact/zipcheck.htm

Phone: (202) 225-4111

Washington, D.C. Office:

2310 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Ken Calvert

Twitter: @KenCalvert

Email link: http://calvert.house.gov/contact/

Phone: (202) 225-1986

Washington, D.C. Office:

2205 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Mimi Walters

Twitter: @RepMimiWalters

Email link: https://walters.house.gov/contact/email

Phone: (202) 225-5611

Washington, D.C. Office:

215 Cannon House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Dana Rohrabacher

Twitter: @DanaRohrabacher

Email link: https://rohrabacher.house.gov/contact/email-me

Phone: (202) 225-2415

Washington, D.C. Office:

2300 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Duncan Hunter

Twitter: @Rep_Hunter

Email link: https://hunter.house.gov/contact-me/email-me

Phone: (202) 225-5672

Washington, D.C. Office:

2429 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Colorado:

Scott Tipton

Twitter: @RepTipton

Email link: https://tipton.house.gov/contact-me/email-me

Phone: (202) 225-4761

Washington, D.C. Office:

218 Cannon House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Ken Buck

Twitter: @RepKenBuck

Email link: https://buck.house.gov/contact/email

Phone: (202) 225-4676

Washington, D.C. Office:

1130 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Doug Lamborn (co-sponsor on the House disapproval resolution)

Twitter: @RepDLamborn

Email link: http://lamborn.house.gov/contact/

Phone: (202) 225-4422

Washington, D.C. Office:

2402 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Mike Coffman

Twitter: @RepMikeCoffman

Email link: https://coffmanforms.house.gov/contact/

Phone: (202) 225-7882

Washington, D.C. Office:

2443 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

 

84 Comment

  • Hell no, I don’t want to be part of Maryland.

    • Ditto. Being swallowed by Maryland doesn’t appeal to me. I’ve lived here over 45 years. The District has an identify distinct from Maryland.

      • HaileUnlikely

        I agree with your last sentence, but disagree that it is a serious argument against retrocession. Every major city in the world has its own unique identity distinct from the state that it’s in. Chicago is nothing like the rest of Illinois. NYC is nothing like the rest of New York State. Austin is really really nothing like the rest of Texas. Should they all splinter off and become their own states?

      • Skeptical. A plurality of DC-born people live in Maryland (more than in DC itself). The “distinct entity” stuff isn’t all that salient, at least if you weigh the culture of natives heavier than that of migrants (who account for 63% of DC’s population; 9 percentage points of which are VA- and MD-born). And that’s before talking about where people who work in DC live and vice versa. We are beholden more to our metro area than our state-level entities, I’d say.
        .
        https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/08/13/upshot/where-people-in-each-state-were-born.html#District_of_Columbia

        • Sure, but that assumes DC has not significantly changed in the last 20 years, which is obviously has. I’d say it has far more in common in some ways with Northern Virginia than Maryland. So many youths moving in from Arlington now that the city is full of soulcycles and sweetgreens.

    • In terms of population size, demographics, and identity, yes DC should be a state. And as long as the Republicans have any power, they will never let it happen. Retrocession is the only realistic path to representation for DC residents and could have happened 20 years ago, except that our local elected representatives have a death grip on the unattainable goal of full statehood and won’t ever consider the alternative.

      • I would rather not have congressional representation than have to tell people I live in Maryland.

      • “Retrocession is the only realistic path to representation for DC residents and could have happened 20 years ago”
        .
        Except MD citizens, legislators and executives don’t want DC, and I’m not aware of any way to force it on them. So, other than that, it’s easy as pie.

        • I don’t know why people keep invoking the idea that MD doesn’t want us. I don’t know of it ever being seriously pushed for, so we don’t really know how people feel about it as a serious consideration.

      • Since when have states been determined by size, demographics, or identity? There are plenty of cities with populations bigger than DC and more distinct from the states that encompass them. California has 39M, DC is nowhere close to that. And demographically DC is similar to Baltimore (also in MD).
        .
        Negotiation over state boundaries has been linked to the implications for national politics since the colonies. Pretending otherwise because the outcome would serve your interests is silly, disingenuous, and discredits the bigger argument for representation.

  • Hell yes, I want a representative and a pair o’Senators. Time for some fresh thinking. The route we’ve been taking leads nowhere.

    • Not to mention a Governor (who is currently a dumb Republican who pulled funding from nearby transit projects to pour useless rural asphalt and explore a maglev train that’ll never get built) and many state legislators (who affect us either way since their policies surround us on all sides). Maybe we can have bus lines that don’t arbitrarily stop at the District line.
      .
      Closing the door on statehood wouldn’t be great, but it’d have its advantages. And we’d still have a Council and Mayor.

    • It’s a really short move to Maryland or Virginia and you can still enjoy DC by proximity.

  • I want none of these. I want exemption from federal taxes, like all the territories get.

    • Tsar of Truxton

      Ditto. This is exactly what I want. However, with Congress now beginning to meddle in DC affairs, I am starting to lean towards needing statehood.

    • +1 I think an option for IDGAF should be added to the poll
      It’s not going to change anything nationally, and it’s not going to happen, so give me my tax money back. Thanks.

    • I hear this a lot, and it is no panacea. First, because Puerto Ricans don’t pay federal income tax, the Commonwealth taxes are significantly higher than typical state taxes (or DC taxes, for that matter). Moreover, the highest tax rate (33%) in at $61,500 of taxable income. In contrast, the 33% federal income tax rate starts at $190,000. So if your taxable income is $100,000, you’d pay nearly $5,000 more in Commonwealth taxes than you do in federal income tax.
      .
      But, let’s say you’re right, and DC tax stays the same while federal income tax is eliminated. You think we have a housing problem now? You think DC is overly gentrified now? What do you think it’s going to look like when people can shield their entire income from federal income tax? Rich people would move into the city in droves and the median housing prices would skyrocket. Someone who pays $100,000 in federal income tax while living in Arlington would gladly pay half of that in mortgage payments to save the other half. That $50,000 translates to more than $4000 per month, or roughly $700,000 in purchase price (depending on interest rates). So, good news, your 15 year old 1 BR in Columbia Heights now sells for over $1 million. Great for DC property owners, terrible for society as a whole.
      .
      tl;dr – it’ll never happen, and if it did, it’s be a disaster.

      • A disaster on a large scale, sure. But I’d make a ton of money selling my house and GTFO of town. It’s a heavy dose of political nihilism with some greed in there too. I’m not convinced that the other options are much better. Since they won’t actually happen, we just end up the b*tches of our congressional overlords. F that.

        • The honesty is refreshing.

          • Thats usually what I say to people when I think they’re a POS, but ok.

          • Not at all. People who support the “no federal taxes” position do so out of either ignorance or greed. The later is far preferable to the former, at least in my view.

          • I think you’re missing the “nothing else is viable” reason. I’d rather spend my time working on things that can have a measurable impact.

        • I’m either ignorant or greedy. Since there has been no movement on the other options, I believe this is the most equitable solution.
          I also believe that if this were to happen the outrage from the rest of the country would likely force some action.

      • I own in DC, I am ok with this. I will sell my house to Zuckerberg and buy a mansion in Cali.

    • I like this idea. We’d be DC, and we wouldn’t pay so much tax.

  • Maryland doesn’t want us. Right now they get all the benefits of being near the city, without having to deal with things like urban poverty and crime. The politicians from Annapolis and Baltimore get to spend the money generated by the DC suburbs while still dominating the legislature.

    DC and our suburbs would be much better served by joining together to form a new state. DC plus Northern Virginia plus Suburban Maryland would be an economic powerhouse. Of course, Annapolis and Richmond aren’t going to let that happen, either, but if one is going to cheerlead for an unrealistic future prospect, then it may as well be for something that would be a big improvement.

    • Tsar of Truxton

      I feel like combining DC, Northern VA and MoCo into a state would essentially give MD and VA to the GOP in exchange for Democratic DC, so I highly doubt that would ever happen. We are probably better off with no representation and those states leaning democratic.

    • To say that Maryland benefits from proximity to DC “without having to deal with things like urban poverty and crime” is pretty inaccurate. Western Prince George’s county is basically Ward 9. Places like Oxon Hill, District Heights, and Suitland deal with most (if not all) of the same issues the city faces.

  • I’m disappointed that my choice — “Take back Arlington and Alexandria” — isn’t among the poll options.

    • I suggest ceding DC in equal parts to Ohio, PA, Virginia, and Florida. There’s no reason states need to be contiguous.

    • Irredentism. You can actually see the case that Richmond might go for it as it would flip their state back to red. Realistically D.C. is probably never a state unless Democrats have the super majority for a major power grab or if GOP gets something out of it too. Yeah Richmond would lose some revenue but what does a red-state government need revenue for anyway? Obviously some people in Arlington and Alexandria wouldn’t love the idea at first but their West of Potomac districts would end up having a lot of representation in the new Douglas Commonwealth state legislature and could actually help fix some of the incompetence in our local government.

      • “Douglas Commonwealth?” The Jemals have their names plastered across this city enough already.

    • Ha. That’s exactly what I was going to say.

  • Just from a theoretical standpoint, DC ought to be a state. We have so much representation of rural interests in Congress — and that is by design and OK — there ought to be two Senators who unequivocally advocate on behalf of urban interests. Sure the Senators from NY, IL, and a few others are going to line up mostly in support of urban interests, but they are always going to be tempered by their other constituents.
    .
    Next, any solution other than statehood is blatantly racist. You can’t look at the history of home rule and representation and not acknowledge that the District has been denied rights because of its majority minority population.

    • Okay, lovely thoughts. But DC statehood is unconstitutional, and good luck with any effort to amend the constitution. So when we return to the land of the possible, joining Maryland starts to sound like a promising idea. We really need to move past the “theoretical standpoint.”

      • I think it’s constitutionally permissible to carve out a federal district, where no one lives (except the President and family), and have it remain DC, and then have the rest of currently is create a new state.

      • This is a common republican talking point that is not based in reality. The Article I section 8 of the constitution gives legislative branch the authority over whatever district they chose to define as the federal district (the part about the states agreeing is no longer relevant as Maryland and Virginia ceded land to become said district long ago). There is nothing in the constitution that prevents congress from defining that district as just the capitol and the White House, or just federal buildings etc. and giving the residential areas of D.C. statehood. But republicans can keep saying, “oh we’d love to give those people voting rights in congress, but sorry the constitution binds our hands.” And all the low-information voters across the country say yeah, too bad, the constitution says D.C. can’t be a state.

        • HaileUnlikely

          The “low information” voters in the rest of the country have no stake in this. It is unreasonable to expect a normal person halfway across the country to immerse themselves in the details of the portion of the Constitution that only applies to the 0.2% of all Americans (including myself and presumably you) who volunteer to live in the one jurisdiction affected by said details. I’d wager that way fewer than one in ten DC voters (all of them, not some arbitrarily-defined subset of, e.g., people who have self-selected into this discussion today on PopVille) don’t even understand what we’re talking about here. Deriding people with no stake in the matter for being ill-informed on the matter is neither productive nor reasonable.

          • “Deriding people with no stake in the matter for being ill-informed on the matter is neither productive nor reasonable.”
            .
            If they have an ill-informed opinion on the matter then it is totally reasonable. If they DGAF one way or another then sure, no reason to ding them for that.

  • Why not just hand ourselves over to Utah? That would make for an easy transition.

    • There was actually a plan for a while where Congress would give Holmes Norton permanent vote in Congress in exchange for adding one House district to Utah, which is reliably Republican. That is frankly absurd that we have to horse trade for any representation but it was the closest I’ve seen to making Holmes Norton’s vote permanently count. Whenever Dems are in power, they give her back that vote and then Republicans immediately take it away.

  • Yes whenever I see “no taxation without representation” I think how much happier I’d be with neither, rather than both. I’ve lived here a long time and never felt particularly disenfranchised by the arrangement. Despite Maryland being uncool (and full of horrible drivers) there’s no real barrier to living there and having a vote if you’d like. It’s hard for me to swallow the idea that we’re meaningfully disenfranchised because our only way to have 1/600000th of a say in selecting a member of Congress is to sign a lease a few miles away from our current lease.

    • You should not be able to give up your rights. They are inalienable.

      • Oh cool! They’re inalienable! As soon as you point this indisputable legal principle out to an attorney I’m sure this will all get cleared right up and we’ll have a senator in no time.

        • No. I’m not saying that’s a reason why anything will happen. I’m just pointing out why the fact that nothing is being done is morally wrong.

  • Most of the arguments in favor of statehood and/or retrocession focus on the national political scene, which for the residents of the district should really only be a small part of. I’d prefer statehood but would support retrocession for the following reasons even though (as stated in the post) it retrocession would be unlikely to change the partisan balance of Congress:
    .
    (1) Representation. Even if we don’t get new members, we would have a voting member in both houses representing our interests.
    .
    (2) Autonomy. DC would be subject to MD law, but no longer to congressional oversight. MD is much more in line with DC’s priorities than Congress.
    .
    (3) Incentives for politicians. A big reason why DC gets such garbage politicians is there is no future in it. DC politics is a dead end. You’ll never become a member of Congress, or a governor or get a national or state level appointment. If being a council member might lead to higher office we might get some actual competition.
    .
    (4) Efficiency. Many of the functions run by the DC government are traditionally run by state, but local governments. In most cases these functions are more efficiently and effectively run on a bigger scale. In particular health and justice.
    .
    (5) Tax harmony. Right now the unique tri-state nature of the metro area greatly increases companies’ ability to play the jurisdictions off one another to get tax incentives, to a disastrous effect with respect to our coffers. Reducing the number of jurisdictions would help.
    .
    Bottom line: I think as residents of the district we should consider the practical lower level implications more than the national ones. It’s also clear that retrocession would clearly hurt the political power of current DC leaders so they will oppose it tooth and nail. I do not trust them on this issue at all.

    • You make a lot of really good points. I also agree that retrocession would lend towards greater autonomy for DC residents. What would likely happen is that DC would become an independent city within MD just like Baltimore City. The council and mayor would retain control over the budget (actually gaining more autonomy since Congress wouldn’t be able to screw around anymore), MPD, DCFD, DPR, DPW, and education. Even permitting and stuff like that is done at the local level in MD with State oversight. So if retrocession were to occur, I don’t think on a local level things would change much. If anything, it would increase autonomy, and would probably lead to increased governmental efficiency.

    • All true in theory. However, the rest of the country – you know, the people with whom this decision in large part resides – don’t care a whit about local politics, and focus entirely on the national implications. So that has to be our concern as well.

      • Genuinely curious here, do you know what it would take to retroceed DC to MD? Would it just require a Maryland and DC vote? Or would it have to be done nationally? Anyone know what happened when the VA part went back?

        • I really don’t know what is required, so it may be something that could be accomplished entirely by DC and MD. But while two states may be able to reallocate land without federal approval, a DC cote is by definition a congressional vote, especially an issue of this magnitude. So national political considerations will always be paramount to local issues, or, heaven forbid, fairness.

    • As someone who practices law in all three “states,” I would just mention, in response to your efficiency point, I would rather be in D.C. superior court than any other place in the metro area for any type of case, and MD court system is by far the worst of the three for efficiency. Just my two-cents.

  • My vote is for Statehood, however, I do not think that this is a realistic outcome.When this came up last week, I thought a lot about retrocession, and the more I thought about it, the more I liked the idea as it would give Washingtonians a voice in national politics, give them more say over their local issues (like the budget), and other things. So it’s not a bad idea. However, I do think that this is a decision that rests with DC Voters, and if the majority want Statehood, retrocession should not even be on the table. FWIW, the idea of retrocession is very new to me as someone who has taken interest in the statehood movement from a young age, and as a Marylander, I can tell you, it is definitely not on the radar here.

  • Wait. Would retrocession mean I have to pay Maryland AND DC taxes?

    • It would most likely mean that yes, you would pay MD tax and DC tax, but the DC tax would be a local tax. When I lived in DC, I paid higher taxes than I do now in MD. When my job incorrectly had be paying Baltimore City tax, it ended up being about the same as when I lived in DC.

  • There was another option floated years ago, that I thought solved the problem of representation well. Keep DC a District (I think it’s too small to be a state on it’s own), make the Delegate a full-fledged Representative and let DC residents vote for MD Senators. Don’t know what would have happened to our electoral votes in that scenario, but presumably that wouldn’t change. Keeps the balance of power in the Senate as well.

    • That is not even remotely constitutional.

      • But if you’re already assuming that you’d really need a constitutional amendment to properly fix the issue…

        • Who is assuming that? Retrocession is constitutional so long as there is still a federal district left behind, which would be the case since the feds own most of the land along the Potomac.

          I am genuinely curious though what benefits we do get by NOT being a state? We get a lot of resources from the federal government I doubt many states get simply by being the seat of the federal government. I’m just curious what changes outside of the federal district inside DC when you start to get to the residential areas.

  • For all DC’s problems, I can’t say that. I’ve ever been impressed with the leadership in Maryland, regardless of party. And Virginia is even worse–when I lived here in the 90s, it’s elected officials regularly made lists of dumbest or most ineffective senators, governors, etc. and the more recent cohorts have continued this tradition as often as not. besides the mediocrity and worse at the top of the ticket, it’s not surprising that local government in Maryland is pretty unimpressive, too, and I say this having worked in MoCo (a grossly overrated place to live) for most of my times here. This is clearly just an arbitrary, partisan proposal.

  • There’s a middle ground here — just dual-hat Maryland’s senators and let DC residents have an equal say in electing them, and give DC’s representative full voting rights.

    All local decisions would still be made locally, DC would remain independent, it wouldn’t require changing the Constitution. We keep our identity.

    DC would have representation in the House as if it were a state.

    Our votes for Senate would count just as much as any resident of Maryland. The Senators would “represent” DC (as in, care about getting votes here) just as they would if we chose retrocession. When Cardin or Van Hollen took to the Senate floor, they’d just have “D-DC, MD) instead of “D-MD” after their name. Functionally, it wouldn’t matter.

    The MD and DC political parties would have to work out joint primaries, but that’s simple enough. On Election Day would take a tiny amount of coordination too. But that’s easy compared to other options. Per person, we’d have the same number of Senators as Virginia or Arizona, which is fine.

    No, there wouldn’t be two new permanently Democratic senators in Congress, but insisting on that 100% guarantees DC residents will never have senators and our rights will continually be violated. We won’t get the moon, but we’d get full representation and keep our identity.

    • “…it wouldn’t require changing the Constitution.” Actually what you are suggesting would require changing the Constitution.

      • Of course it would. I have no idea how one could think otherwise, other than having a Trumpian level of disregard for Constitutional requirements. Off the top of my head, Article I, Section 2, 3 and 4 would probably require amendment, and the 17th Amendment definitely would.

  • Why hasn’t their been a concerted effort to stop paying federal taxes by DC residents?

    It would be easy for me as a independent contractor. I understand it would be harder for other but there has to be a way to make the government sit up and listen to our demands.

    As we learned with Devos money is the loudest voice in the room

    • I would love to see the mayor and the entire DC Council refuse to pay their federal taxes, and dare Congress to come after them. Now THAT would get some press. Ain’t gonna hold my breath, though.

      • Even better, the city could do a tax protest by depositing the federal taxes they withhold for city employees into an escrow account instead of remitting it to the feds. That way all individual taxpayers are paying what they owe and no one is personally benefitting. It would get some attention for sure.

  • I honestly don’t care how we do it, but I do want budget autonomy and representation in Congress, at least in the House. In lieu of the latter, I just want Congress to butt completely out of local legislative decisions. Call it statehood or whatever, but it is ridiculous that we need Congress to approve the District spending its own money, and we don’t go to Oklahoma and meddle in school vouchers or death with dignity legislation or gun laws, so they shouldn’t meddle in ours. I think the not paying federal taxes would be nice, but we do get a lot of benefits from those taxes, so I don’t really think it’s a fair point. So for me, it’s either give us a say, or mind your own beeswax, Congress!

  • Maryland would never go for it. There’s already a power struggle between the DC suburbs and Annapolis/Baltimore. Throw in the District and it would essentially be making us a state with a little bit of extra land thrown in.

    From a practical standpoint, I would be fine with that. We’d get full representation, and Maryland is probably the most politically and culturally similar state to us.

  • There are upsides to becoming part of Maryland. You can stop using your turn signals. Speed limits no longer apply. Texting while driving is encouraged. Red lights and stop signs are suggestions to yield…

  • If I wanted to be part of Maryland, I’d just move there. No need for amending the Constitution.

  • I’m all for retrocession back to Maryland. The District is looking for someone to lay, so to speak, in the same “bed.” Preferably a liberal, contiguous state. haha.
    Meaning the District gets free internet, free fridge use(but please ask if you want to use someone else’s food/drink), free outlets at reasonable use, backyard space, kitchen use, bathroom use, two US senators and a representative.

  • Retrocession sounds like a good idea in principle, but we have the 23rd Amendment, which grants DC electoral votes according to the EV of the smallest states, which have three currently. Unless we want to give the non-retroceded parts of DC their own 3 EVs, that amendment would need to be overturned. Also, Marylanders don’t like the idea of retrocession since it would imbalance their state even more. Remember when Hogan cancelled the Baltimore Red Line in favor of the Purple Line? Not too many people were happy about that upstate.

    • That is an unfair characterization of what Hogan did. He cut state funding to both the red line and the purple line, but not enough from the purple line to kill it. Montgomery and PG Counties picked up the tab for the purple line.
      .
      Hogan mostly diverted that money into rural roads and lowering the tolls on MD-200 and other roads. He was looking out for his rural constituency at the expense of his metropolitan one (which overwhelmingly voted against him). Rational for him to do; what’s irrational is that metro-area residents couldn’t trouble themselves to vote and stop him from getting into office. DC residents would hopefully rectify that if retroceded.

  • I was under the impression Maryland does not want us….?

  • Umm no. They know that if we achieve statehood we could tip the balance of power. 2 democratic senators representing the District would be a game changer.

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