Over at Thinkprogress, DC Vote Communications Director Jaline Quinto dispatched most of Hans von Spakovsky's arguments against DC representation in Congress, which basically amounts to not wanting Democrats to get another Congressional seat. Spakovsky says that the founders never intended for DC to have representation, but they also didn't intend for black people not to be property. Things change over time, and our understanding of liberty under the Constitution is redefined. There's nothing democratic about DC residents being taxed and not having representation in Congress.
Trying to counter this point, von Spakovsky offers really bizarre argument:
And while statehood supporters cite the famous American rallying cry “no taxation without representation,” that is a false analogy. The entire Congress represents the interests of the District, because every single member of Congress works in the District.
I guess there's really no such thing as a dictatorship. Sure, people don't vote for dictators, but they work in the country they live in, so obviously they represent the interests of the people who live there and did not vote for them. In fact, what's the point in voting for governors or mayors? The issue of whether people are properly represented has already been solved by residency. There doesn't seem to be any point to electing any statewide or local officeholder, if they work there, they represent the interests of the constituency in which they work. Therefore, they should just be appointed by some benevolent, overseeing authority.
Von Spakovsky's general hostility to the voting franchise is nothing new, but remember, this guy used to be an assistant attorney for civil rights in the Justice Department. The Senate is deciding this morning on whether to consider a bill to grant DC residents a representative in Congress.
-- A. Serwer
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