2023 - 2024 LEGISLATURE
August 9, 2023 - Introduced by Senators ROYS, CARPENTER, L. JOHNSON, LARSON,
SPREITZER and TAYLOR, cosponsored by Representatives MOORE OMOKUNDE, C.
MYERS, OHNSTAD, SHELTON and SUBECK. Referred to Committee on Senate
1 Relating to: urging members of the United States Congress to enact federal
2 legislation granting statehood to the people of Washington, D.C.
3 Whereas, the people living on the land that would eventually be designated as
4 the District of Columbia were provided the right to vote for representation in
5 Congress when the United States Constitution was ratified in 1788; and
6 Whereas, the passage of the Organic Act of 1801 placed the District of Columbia
7 under the exclusive authority of the United States Congress and abolished residents'
8 right to vote for members of Congress and the president and vice president of the
9 United States; and
10 Whereas, residents of the District of Columbia were granted the right to vote
11 for the president and vice president through passage of the Twenty-third
12 Amendment to the United States Constitution in 1961; and
13 Whereas, as of 2020, U.S. Census Bureau data estimates that the District of
14 Columbia's population of approximately 712,000 residents is comparable to the
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1 populations of Wyoming (582,000), Vermont (623,000), Alaska (731,000), and North
2 Dakota (765,000); and
3 Whereas, residents of the District of Columbia share all the responsibilities of
4 United States citizenship, including paying more federal taxes than residents of 22
5 states, service on federal juries, and defending the United States as members of the
6 United States armed forces in every war since the War for Independence, yet they
7 are denied full representation in Congress; and
8 Whereas, the residents of the District of Columbia themselves have endorsed
9 statehood for the District of Columbia and passed a District-wide referendum on
10 November 8, 2016, which favored statehood by 86 percent; and
11 Whereas, no other democratic nation denies the right of self-government,
12 including participation in its national legislature, to the residents of its capital; and
13 Whereas, the residents of the District of Columbia lack full democracy, equality,
14 and citizenship enjoyed by the residents of the 50 states; and
15 Whereas, the United States Congress repeatedly has interfered with the
16 District of Columbia's limited self-government by enacting laws that affect the
17 District of Columbia's expenditure of its locally raised tax revenue, including barring
18 the usage of locally raised revenue, thus violating the fundamental principle that
19 states and local governments are best suited to enact legislation that represents the
20 will of their citizens; and
21 Whereas, although the District of Columbia has passed consecutive balanced
22 budgets since the 1997 fiscal year, it still faces the possibility of being shut down
23 yearly because of congressional deliberations over the federal budget; and
24 Whereas, District of Columbia Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton and Delaware
25 U.S. Senator Tom Carper introduced in the 117th Congress H.R. 51 and S. 51, the
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1 Washington, D.C. Admission Act, which provides that the State of Washington, D.C.,
2 would have all the rights of citizenship as taxpaying American citizens, including
3 two senators and at least one House member; and
4 Whereas, the United Nations Human Rights Committee has called on the
5 United States Congress to address the District of Columbia's lack of political
6 equality, and the Organization of American States has declared the
7 disenfranchisement of District of Columbia residents a violation of its charter
8 agreement, to which the United States is a signatory; now, therefore, be it
9 Resolved by the senate, the assembly concurring, That the members of the
10 United States Congress are urged to enact federal legislation granting statehood to
11 the people of Washington, D.C.; and, be it further
12 Resolved, That the State of Wisconsin supports admitting Washington, D.C.,
13 into the Union as a state of the United States of America.
14 (END)