June 26, 2020

Van Hollen Statement on Historic House Passage of D.C. Statehood

Today, U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) released the following statement regarding the House of Representatives’ passage of the Washington, D.C. Admission Act, legislation granting Washington, D.C. statehood, making it the 51st state, and giving its citizens full representation in Congress. 

“Today is a historic day in our nation’s capital. For far too long the people of the District of Columbia have faced taxation without representation. The District has been denied the basic right of self-governance even though its residents pay more in taxes than 22 other states – and the population of D.C. is greater than Wyoming and Vermont. The need for urgent action has been further underscored by recent events – from Republicans purposefully robbing D.C. residents of $700 million of emergency COVID-19 funding to the President’s unconstitutional crackdown against peaceful protesters. We must right this wrong.

“I commend the House for taking this monumental step forward today. Now Republican Senate Majority Leader McConnell must immediately bring this bill up for Senate consideration. It’s time for Republicans to stop treating the citizens of the District of Columbia as second class citizens and recognize their Constitutional rights as Americans.”

Senator Van Hollen is an original cosponsor of the Washington, D.C. Admission Act and has supported D.C. statehood from his time in the U.S. House of Representatives. He has also opposed Appropriations riders that interfere with D.C.’s right to self-governance, worked with Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton of the District of Columbia to replenish the D.C. Emergency Planning and Security Fundurged Republican leadership to treat D.C. as a state in relation to COVID-19 relief funding, and introduced legislation to ensure that D.C. maintains control of its police force and National Guard.