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April 2007
President's Report, Spring 2007 (Marianna Scheffer)
Notice of Annual Meeting
Publicly-Funded Elections (Sue Dursin)
Report from the 2007 Nominating Committee (Marian Wilkins)
Treasurer's Report / Proposed Budget April 2007
Proposed Program for 2007-08
Initiative / Referendum (Sue Dursin)
Candidate Forums (Sue Dursin)
State Convention
Vote Count (Marian Wilkins)
Kona Meeting (Marian Wilkins)
Minutes - LWV Hawaii County - March 10, 2007 (Maiden Temple)
D.C. Voting Rights - Part I (Sue Irvine)
D.C. Voting Rights - Part II (Marianna Scheffer)
Washington, D.C. Voting Rights

Washington, D.C. Voting Rights

General Timeline and History of DC Voting Rights

Prior to the establishment of the District of Columbia in December 1800, residents of the newly founded city of Washington, together with the existent cities of Georgetown and Alexandria voted for federal congressional representatives as citizens of either Maryland or Virginia.

  • 1801: Congress passes the Organic Acts of 1801, which first took away the vote from the people living in the District of Columbia.

  • 1961: The 23rd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is ratified, granting DC residents the right to vote in U.S. Presidential elections.

  • 1973: The Home Rule Act provides for an elected mayor and 13-member city council. Congress retains right to review and overturn all laws. District budget requires approval of Congress and U.S. President.

  • 1985: The DC Voting Rights Constitutional Amendment fails. The amendment receives only 16 approvals from the required 38 states for ratification.

  • 2006: The DC Voting Rights Act of 2006 (DCVRA) addresses concerns that arose from the DC FAIR Act of 2005. Sponsored by Representative Tom Davis (R VA) and Delegate Norton (D DC), the DCVRA moves out of the House Committee on Government Reform with a vote of 29-4 on May 18, 2006. The bipartisan bill goes to the House Judiciary Committee. This bill will provide DC residents with one voting member in the House of Representatives but no Senators. The 109th Congress adjourns without passing the DCVRA.

In 1801, DC residents were disenfranchised from the national legislature by an act of Congress. Since then, the citizens of DC have fought to obtain full voting representation in the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate. DC citizens live in 120 neighborhoods; compose a population of roughly 600,000 people, comparable to the state of Wyoming; defend our country in times of war; serve on federal juries; and pay one of the highest federal income taxes of any state. Still, DC citizens go unrepresented in Congress and their voices go unheard on federal issues such as health care, public safety, education, environment, taxation and foreign policy.

The LWV Position on DC Voting Rights

The League has been a longtime advocate for DC voting rights and this issue remains one of the League’s priority issues for education and advocacy, with the disenfranchisement of DC citizens striking at the very principles upon which Leagues work across the nation.

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