December 1963 Home   Newsletters

January 1964

February 1964

Calendar of Events
Local Agenda This Year and Next
Names for Next Year's Board
National CR's 1962-1964 - District of Columbia
State Study Anyone?
No Cakes!
Consensus
Selecting a Local Agenda Item

National CR's 1962-1964 - District of Columbia

An article in each Aloha Voter is planned for the next few months in order to help us keep informed on our National Continuing Responsibilities. The first CR to be covered in this series follows:

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA: Support of self-government and representation in Congress for citizens of the District of Columbia.

This CR was originally voted into the League Program four years after the LWV was organized as "support of Federal Suffrage for the District." It has been retained since that time with different wording.

In 1961 the 23rd amendment gave-the District representation in the Electoral College: this was 36 years after the first adoption for suffrage was voted into our program: but it would seem more important than ever for citizens of the District to have self-government and representation in Congress.

It is pointless to mention here how bad conditions in our nation's capital are or the obvious fact that they are closely observed by many visitors from other countries. In order for citizens of the District to have self-government a constitutional amendment must be passed and ratified by three-fourths of the states, It is an issue that does not get out of Committee to the floor: and here is one spot that the LWV with its background of legislative action in states and congressional districts could do much to help citizens of the District.

National Office questionnaires sent to us in December, 1962, asked us to interview our Congressmen on this. Those from Hawaii are on record and wanting to see local self-government down there; however, as stated before, this issue does not get out to the floor of the House for vote. (In 1948 a Home-Rule bill was sent to the House; and five times bills have passed in the Senate; but the House took no action). The LWV is continuing to try to develop public opinion in favor of self government and only this past .year there have been many articles in periodicals about the unfair conditions down there. One of the best services we individual leaguers can do is tell people the status. quo of the District in relation to the Federal Government... as this is not understood by many people today.

The District is the only part of the continental U.S. where citizens have no representation; yet in 1960 it had a population of 768,700 (more than lived in 11 of the states), and contributed more in taxes to the Treasury than did 20 of the other states. District citizens serve in the Armed Force and- meet all other obligations of Citizenship. Congress does not contribute to the District budget; and although the Federal Government occupies 42% of the District land and calls on it for a number of services necessary to the nation's capital it contributes but 12% towards its revenue. It has been estimated that the cost of having Congress serve as the City Council for the District costs, $2 million and 6,000 congressional man-hours per session.

How do you think you can help--let's try to "sell" self-government for the District of Columbia people.

December 1963 Top   Home   Newsletters February 1964