More than a dozen D.C. officials will travel to New Hampshire next week to testify on behalf of a resolution expressing support for making the District of Columbia the 51st state.
It’s the delegation’s first stop on what D.C. Councilmembers promise will be a larger tour around the country to seek support for the creation of “New Columbia.”
“This is a journey about self-determination and self-respect,” said at-large Councilmember David Catania, one of the delegation’s leaders, at a news conference today announcing the trip.
“We ought not be respectful of people who don’t respect us and who want to take our money, send our young people to war and have no consideration of whether or not our voice is at the table,” he said.
The group of 13, which includes Mayor Vincent Gray, is seeking allies in state legislatures to sponsor resolutions intended to apply pressure to their Members of Congress to support legislation that would make D.C. a state.
New Hampshire state Rep. Cindy Rosenwald (D) sponsored such a nonbinding resolution in 2008, which backers say would have passed had it not been for a snowstorm that prevented a quorum from being present the day a vote on the measure was scheduled.
Rosenwald is trying again, and it is on her resolution’s behalf that the D.C. delegation is traveling to New Hampshire to testify Jan. 12.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.