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business and understands the insurance business and understands many other things.

You are going to let a city manager who has to be a jack-of-all-trades put a certain man in there. What is going to happen? Do you believe that the present people who have been in that department for many, many years are going to be put out? They will be put out, if they do not like the way they part their hair.

What are you going to have? You are going to have many and many more of us go down to some stranger who does not understand the business, trying to sell him a bill of goods, to get by with something.

Let us go back to your Traffic Department.
Mr. HARRIS. How much time will you require, Mr. Dolton?

Mr. Dolton. I would like to have about ten minutes, sir. · If I bore you I would be glad to stop:

Mr. HARRIS. You hear the bells ringing. They are calling us over to the floor. They are going to take up the rule on the agriculture bill.

Mr. Dolton. I am sorry, sir. I could finish very quickly if you wish, sir.

Mr. HARRIS. I did want to find out how long you would require.

Mr. Dolton. Then let me get to the most important thing, as I see this bill. You had several reliable organizations opposing this bill as to taking proper votes.

You have heard testimony here of certain committees that nobody has heard from. I certainly have not, and I have canvassed about 400 people finding out if they knew certain people, to see that they have a city-wide vote.

Who wants this bill, sir? You are laying Washington open to a communistic government. You and I do not know how many of them there are here. Let them elect five or six Communists in that supposed Council that you are asking for, and what will happen? You might get a city manager that has all the power in the world as a Communist here. Will this not be a wonderful spot for them to start communism? They can get into Washington, unbeknown to anybody, and this would be the most logical spot in the United States to start Communism.

Gentlemen, I am afraid if you pass this bill you are going to have a lot of trouble. Without even figuring the expense of it, which Washington is up against now on taxes, there is nothing wrong with the city government at this time. It has been supervised by Congress.

The Federal Government had the right to Washington. The Federal Government must be protected at all costs. I hope that you gentlemen will not pass this bill.

If you want a different government I would suggest that you put in two more commissioners appointed by the White House and approved by Congress and let each one of those commissioners supervise the various departments that you have, and abolish most of these foolish boards that they have. Then you will get a better and a cheaper government.

We know what we have now, sir. We do not know what we will have when we get through with this bill, if it is passed. I will not take up any more of

your time. Thank

Thank you, sir. Mr. HARRIS. Thank you very much, Mr. Dolton. I know there are many questions that some of the members would perhaps like to

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ask, to get your viewpoint. Some, I feel, might be repetitious, however, in that we have been asking these searching questions to find out what the reflection of the witnesses will be. However, we appreciate the fact that you came here and expressed your views and suggestions regarding this legislation.

Mr. ĎOLTON. Thank you, sir.
Mr. HARRIS. Mr. Mortin Liftin is the next witness. Mr. Liftin,

, how much time would you like to have?



Mr. LIFTIN. I would think not more than 5 minutes.
Mr. HARRIS. I believe we will let you proceed, then.

I regret exceeding that we find ourselves interfered with by the House of Representatives, but being only a small minute part of that great body we will have to give way to its call.

Mr. LIFTIN. I am here on behalf of the District of Columbia Industrial Union Council of the CIO.

We want to express our appreciation for this opportunity to present our views in support of the principle of home rule and reorganization of the government of the District of Columbia.

We believe that any home rule bill should incorporate-and we particularly wish to express our approval of—the 11 guiding principles for home rule in the District which are set forth on pages 3 and 4 of the April 15 report of the House subcommittee of the last Congress.

These principles, setting forth the basic guides for establishing a satisfactory system of home rule in the District, along with an efficient governmental machinery, appear to us to encompass the fundamental considerations which the Congress should have before it in passing upon this legislation.

We do not intend to elaborate on these principles. However, we do wish to comment briefly on several basic matters.

First, we think that in the light of solemn pledges of both major political parties, in the form of their platform commitments to the American people, we doubt that it is necessary to argue at any length that the residents of the District should be granted home rule.

We know of no sound argument to justify, particularly at this time, depriving a community of almost 1,000,000 people of the fundamental democratic rights and privileges of selecting their local officials. The population of the District of Columbia exceeds that of many States.

A country which is now making a monumental effort to save democracy in Europe can scarcely deny to its own citizens in its own Capital City as large a measure of self-government as is possible under our Constitution. I hardly think it can be said that the residents of the District are not capable of such responsibility.

There are in addition what may be considered even more practical grounds for ignoring any sentiment adverse to home rule. We believe that for Congress to spend so great a portion of its time on strictly municipal affairs of the District is discriminatory against the rest of the people of this country. In essence, the Congress is a national legislature set up to deal with the problems of the people on a national basis. When Congress spends so great a proportion of its time, as has been required in the past, for the conduct of District affairs, it

must obviously take time away from far more pressing affairs that affect both the Nation and the entire world.

We believe the home rule bill should incorporate these fundamental requirements that all of the local legislative and administrative functions should be completely under the control of the local electorate, and the District should have the largest possible degree of participation in making laws for the District itself, as is possible under the Constitution.

We think that the proposed charter in S. 1527, which we endorse, meets these fundamental objectives satisfactorily. Although consideration by various committees of Congress, and by Congress itself, may produce changes in detail, we earnestly hope that there will be a home rule bill and there will be no reduction in the degree of home rule proposed in the pending bill.

In conclusion, we want to emphasize our opinion that the principle of home rule as enunciated in S. 1527 should be put into law as quickly as possible to make democracy in the District of Columbia a living reality.

Mr. HARRIS. Thank you very much, Mr. Liftin. We appreciate having your statement and your giving the views of your organization.

Mr. LIFTIN. Thanks very much for permitting us to be heard.
Mr. HARRIS. Mr. Browne is the next witness.
How much time would you care to take, Mr. Browne?



Mr. BROWNE. About 5 minutes, sir.

Mr. HARRIS. Of course, we want to give just as much time as people require and feel that they need in connection with this matter. At the same time, we are endeavoring to complete the record in these hearings.

If you could conclude your testimony in 5 minutes, let us say, we would be glad to hear you at this time. Since you are here we do not want to inconvenience you too much by requiring you to come back.

This is the second round on the ringing of the bells, and we will have to go right away to answer this roll call.

Mr. BROWNE. I can finish in 5 minutes, sir.
Mr. HARRIS. Very well. You may proceed.

Mr. BROWNE. My name is Vincent Browne. I am a member of the executive board of the District branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

We wish to express first our appreciation for the privilege of presenting our views regarding the home rule bill which is now being considered.

The District of Columbia branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People has a local membership of 7,000 and the statement which is presented at this time was authorized by action of the executive board on June 7, 1949.

The District of Columbia branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People strongly supports the efforts to secure home rule for the District of Columbia and endorses the principles contained in the bills introduced by Senator Kefauver and Congressman Klein. One of the objectives of all mature people is the achievement of the opportunity

to govern themselves. This is as true of the people in Washington, D, C., as it is of people in other parts of the world. In unofficial plebiscites the majority of the people in this community have already recorded their desire for home rule. But if there is still doubt about what the people here want, we would urge you to conduct an official poll among those who would constitute the potential electorate in the community to discover their stand on both the questions of home rule and national representation.

One of the most widely raised arguments against home rule is that it would be virtually meaningless without national representation. Yet there are the examples of the fully organized Territories of Hawaii and Alaska in which the people govern themselves without national representation. We also press the fact that the relationship between these Territories and the Government of the United States is clear without question. There is no doubt that the National Government has ultimate responsibility for all Territories. It is interesting to note that some of the people who are saying that home rule for the District wouldn't mean much without national representation are also saying that since Hawaii and Alaska have local self-government, they do not need national representation.

One of the great tragedies of our local community is that there is such a broad cleavage between those few people who are influential in public affairs and the great numbers who find themselves without a voice. A government in which all can participate bridges a great many differences. The election of public officers genuinely represenative of the majority of the people unites a community as nothing else can. What we are asking for is a local government responsible to the will of the majority of the people as that will is expressed at free elections. We are asking for something that we fought to bring to other parts of the world where it was denied. We are seeking the same opportunity of democracy for ourselves now.

The people who have appeared before you in the interests of home rule have not agreed on all aspects of the organization of the government which they are seeking. But the important thing is that they have agreed on the desirability of home rule. Disagreement over the precise nature of administration and organization of a self-governing group is by no means an unhealthy sign. Unanimity is not possible except in a totalitarian society and there it is the unanimity of the lash. Every community has its own personality and the exact forms of the administration of public services is affected by these varying characteristics. Doubtlessly, if we could organize our public agencies according to the principles most frequently found in American cities we could later make such adjustments as would most fit our peculiar community characteristics.

We have observed that some of the people who have opposed home rule have done so on the grounds that they disapprove of the method of financing the city that has been proposed. It is understandable, of course, that people should want to know the costs of everything. In this connection in a rather philosophical vein, one might raise the question of what is the price tag that comes with the opportunity to govern oneself. Very likely if it is too high for Washington, D. C., it is too high for the rest of the world. Practically, we are in approval of the formula expressed in the Kefauver bill and its companion. We believe that S. 1527 contains adequate insurance against extravagant spending. And, does not the Congress with respect to the territories as the States with respect to their municipal corporations stand astride the path of those who would engage in reckless spending?

The granting of home rule to the District does not diminish the interests or the influence of the Nation in the Capital City. We clearly perceive that there are affairs of local interest which ought to be the responsibility of an electorate as is true of every other American city. On the other hand, we recognize that there are other public operations here which are more largely the concern of the Nation as a whole and which Congress ought to directly supervise. For example, the local police system ought to be made more responsive to the local citizenry and this would be true under home rule. Yet, Congress might clearly want some additional protective services for national operations and facilities. When broad questions arise concerning the appropriate jurisdiction of one or the other it is left to the Congressas it would be in the case of a state treating its municipal creation—to say what the answer may be.

It seems to us, finally, that there is a kind of moral obligation to grant home rule to the District. Quite apart from any basic philosophy of democracy, the major parties have repeatedly committed themselves to the objectives of home rule.

The organization which I represent takes the attitude that the time is ripe now for the achievement of home rule for the District.

Mr. HARRIS. Thank you very much. Mr. McMillan wants to ask a question.

Mr. McMillan. I believe you said your organization contains a membership of about 7,000.

Mr. BROWNE. Yes, sir.

Mr. McMILLAN. Did you take a poll to see how many of them wanted home rule?

Mr. BROWNE. No, sir; we did not. This poll was taken among the members of the executive board, which is elected by the members of the organization. The executive board, 34 in number, was in unanimous agreement.

Mr. Harris. Thank you very much.
Mr. BROWNE. Thank you, sir.

Mr. HARRIS. I am very sorry to announce to those who came here to testify this morning that we are compelled to postpone our hearing until another meeting, in view of the call of the House. We must go

The committee will adjourn until Friday morning at 10 o'clock.

(Thereupon, at 10:40 a. m., Wednesday, July 20, 1949, an adjournment was taken until 10 a. m., Friday, July 22, 1949.)


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