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MOR EOVER, STATEHOOD
IS A LOGICAL EXTENSION OF THĘ
SELF-DETERMINATION MOVEMENT FOR HOME RULE AND FULL VOTING
REPRESENTATION IN CONGRESS.
FOR ONE, THE HOME RULE CHARTER
WHICH WAS ADOPTED IN DECEMBER OF 1973 LEFT SOME MAJOR UNFINISHED BUSINESS. THIS UNFINISHED BUSINESS IS REPRESENTED BY SEVERAL
RECEIVED MAJOR MOMENTUM FROM THE CAMPAIGN FOR PASSAGE OF A
CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT DURING THE 1970'S AND EARLY 1980'S.
1978, FOR THE FIRST TIME IN HISTORY AND BY A MARGIN OF
TWO-THIRDS OF THE HOUSE AND TWO-THIRDS OF THE SENATE BOTH BODIES
OF THE CONGRESS WENT ON RECORD BY VOTING FOR FULL VOTING
REPRESENTATION FOR THE CITIZENS OF THE DISTRICT.
AT LEAST ONE HOUSE OF THE LEGISLATURES OF OVER HALF OF THE
STATES ALSO SUPPORTED THE AMENDMENT.
ALTHOUGH THE AMENDMENT WAS
NOT RATIFIED BY THE REQUIRED NUMBER OF STATES, THE POTENTIAL FOR LONG RANGE SUCCESS OF THE SELF-DETERMINATION MOVEMENT WAS
DURING THE NATIONWIDE EDUCATIONAL AND ORGANIZATIONAL EFFORTS OF
THE CAMPAIGN FOR THE VOTING RIGHTS AMENDMENTS.
EVEN MORE IMPORTANT TO SELF-DETERMINATION MOVEMENT MOMENTUM,
HOWEVER, HAS BEEN THE DISTRICT'S ACCOMPLISHMENTS UNDER ITS
DECADE OF HOME RULE GOVERNMENT.
WORKING UNDER THE HOME RULE
CHARTER AS ADOPTED IN 1973, THE DISTRICT HAS EXPERIENCED GROWTH
IN ADMINISTRATIVE ACCOMPLISHMENTS.
THERE HAVE ALSO BEEN
POST-CHARTER INCREMENTS IN HOME RULE AUTHORITY.
OF HOME RULE AUTHORITY ARE HIGHLIGHTED BY THE SO-CALLED CHADHA
LEGISLATION WHICH STRENGTHENED LOCAL GOVERNMENT THROUGH THE
ESTABLISHMENT OF A VETO PROCEDURE WHICH REQUIRES INVOLVEMENT OF
THE HOUSE, THE SENATE, AND THE PRESIDENT TO REJECT DISTRICT
STATEHOOD MERGES THE DUAL CONCERNS FOR HOME RULE AND VOTING
IT PROVIDES THE BEST. MEANS FOR OUR GREAT NATION
TO ADDRESS ITS MORAL RESPONSIBILITY TO PROVIDE FULL VOTING
RIGHTS AND LOCAL CONTROL OF LOCAL AFFAIRS TO THE CITIZENS OF
WASHINGTON, D.C. --THE SAME RIGHTS ENJOYED BY ALL OTHER U.S.
NATIONAL AND LOCAL LEVEL, AND NOW INCLUDES SUCH SIGNIFICANT
GROUPS AS THE DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL COMMITTEE, AMERICANS FOR
DEMOCRATIC ACTION, THE NATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR WOMEN, THE
BASE REPRESENTS HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF CITIZENS, FROM EVERY
STATE IN THE UNION, COVERING A MAJORITY OF CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICTS ACROSS THE COUNTRY. THE LCCR'S ENDORSEMENT ON MARCH
31 OF THIS YEAR ALONG WITH THE GROWING NUMBER OF ENDORSEMENTS OF
AS YOU ARE AWARE, A SIMILAR STAGED APPROACH WAS USED IN GAINING
COMMITTEE AND FLOOR ACTION DURING THE HOME RULE AND VOTING
THE TWO CAMPAIGN EFFORTS INVOLVED A NUMBER OF
UNSUCCESSFUL "TEST VOTES" SPANNING MORE THAN ONE CONGRESS BEFORE
VICTORY WAS WON.
IN EACH INSTANCE WHERE VOTES WERE TAKEN --WIN
OR LOSE--IMPORTANT GROUNDWORK WAS LAID FOR THE NEXT STEP IN THE
IN CONCLUSION, I BELIEVE THAT THE STATEHOOD CONSTITUTION,
WITH THE ADDITION OF THE PROPOSED AMENDMENTS IS A SOUND
ALTHOUGH SOME MIGHT DISAGREE OVER ONE PROVISION OR
ANOTHER, IT IS MORE IMPORTANT TO ACCOMPLISH THE INSTITUTIONAL
CHARACTERIZED AS NIT-PICKING.
I FOR ONE AM REASSURED IN KNOWING
THAT THE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT PROCESS WOULD ALWAYS BE AN
OPTION AVAILABLE TO THE RESIDENTS OF THE STATE OF NEW COLUMBIA
AS IT IS TO THE CITIZENS OF VERY OTHER STATE.
MR. CHAIRMAN, ON BEHALF OF THE STATEHOOD COMMITTEE, I WANT
TO THANK YOU FOR YOUR PERSEVERANCE IN PRESSING FORWARD ON THE
SELF-DETERMINATION AND FULL EN FRANCHISEMENT FOR ALL OUR CITIZENS.
Mr. BARNES. Thank you, Mr. Greenberg. I know that Congressman Fauntroy enthusiastically welcomes this testimony in recalling the effort to secure passage of the D.C. voting rights amendment by a vote of two-thirds of the House and Senate. It was certainly the role of the Self-Determination Coalition and others that made the difference, and so I know that the Congressman welcomes the statehood committee of the D.C. Self-Determination Coalition going on record in support of this cause, and your testimony as to the growing number of those who are endorsing this effort suggested that we are on our way.
The Congressman did want me to ask that the recent news re lease by the Democratic National Committee be made a part of the record and to just quickly read the statement by the chairman of the Democratic National Committee, Mr. Paul Kirk.
As Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, I enthusiastically support passage of H.R. 325, a bill to admit the District of Columbia as the 51st State of the Union. I urge members of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate to swiftly enact this important piece of legislation to ensure that every citizen of this Nation enjoys full voting representation in the Congress of the United States. The issue of statehood for the District of Columbia transcends party lines, and many Democrats and Republicans alike support this effort to grant to the citizens of the District of Columbia voting representation in the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate.
Currently the citizens of the District of Columbia do not have voting representation in the U.S. Congress as do other citizens in the 50 States. The citizens of the District of Columbia have clearly and unequivocally spoken on this issue, and hrough the initiative process have expressed their strong desire for statehood.
The Council of the District of Columbia has passed a resolution expressing its sup port for statehood. The Democratic Party stands firm with the citizens of the District of Columbia, and supports their efforts to become the 51st State of the United States. And, so as these important endorsements come in, I think that the prospects for passage of a statehood bill are enhanced.
[The news release follows: