Posted by DrJohn on 4 July, 2021 at 8:35 am. 2 comments already!


I find Mo Rocca to be as annoying as he sounds. He began his career as a comedian and eventually worked his way up to being a “correspondent” for CBS Sunday Morning where he frequently presents a segment which almost always includes swipes at conservatives and the GOP.

Today he anchored a piece about DC and made an impassioned argument for why Washington, DC should be a state. He featured war veterans and minorities and others who are shocked that DC is not  a state.

It is no secret that democrats want DC to become a state and it is for a political end. They would love to have two additional forever democrat Senators and another forever democrat Representative.

But having watched Rocca many times I knew he would omit something really fundamental and important to the story and he did not let me down.

There is a reason DC is not a state.

DC is not a state because the Founders of the nation did not want it to be a state.

First, because they were concerned about the seat of federal power being controlled by a hostile or intrusive state government. Second, because they knew that if the capital were in a state — much less its own state — the people would vote to grow and accumulate federal power. Both situations were incompatible with the proper separation of powers and state rights.

James Madison wrote about such a state becoming highly partisan:

Yet even setting contemporary debates aside, one of James Madison’s arguments for creating a federal district was his fear of the partisan nature of states. In Federalist No. 43, he warned that without federal control of the capital, “the public authority might be insulted and its proceedings interrupted with impunity” by some opposing party. That is an argument about partisanship as well.

George Washington himself wisely chose the location of the Capitol

But the location caused more tension between the founders—specifically, northerner Alexander Hamilton and southerner Thomas Jefferson. Hamilton thought having a northern capital would help the north settle outstanding Revolutionary War debts. Jefferson was wary about bankers and economic masterminds—who lived mostly in northern states—having too much control. So, to compromise, George Washington himself chose a location bordering the Potomac River. The northern Maryland and the southern Virginia would be the two states to cede land for this new capital, which was founded in 1790. So, in short, statehood for D.C. would directly contradict the Constitution.

Worried about representation? Shouldn’t be

Furthermore, the District is unique in that it’s ultimately only a few miles away from two states where residents can seek full voting rights, if having the ability to vote for congresscritters is important enough to them. While it may be a burden for some to move five miles away across the Potomac, it usually doesn’t necessitate changing jobs or leaving family behind. (And hey, conservatives have been voting with their feet over gun rights for ages by moving across the river)

And that is why DC is not and should never be a state.

Happy 4th!

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