Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) ordered the District to fly flags containing 51 stars as a form of protest Monday, ahead of the national holiday Flag Day.
Bowser directed the flags to be displayed “as a reminder to Congress and the nation that the 700,000 tax-paying American citizens living in Washington, D.C. demand to be recognized” in a tweet.
This #FlagDay, 51-star flags along Pennsylvania Ave will serve as a reminder to Congress and the nation that the 700,000 tax-paying American citizens living in DC demand to be recognized.— Mayor Muriel Bowser (@MayorBowser) June 13, 2022
The Senate must do the right thing, embrace representation & send #DCStatehood to @POTUS.
According to the New York Post the mayor also said, “On Flag Day, we celebrate American ideals, American history, and American liberty. But the very foundation of those ideals, and the basis for our liberty, is representation. DC’s disenfranchisement is a stain on American democracy – a 220-year-old wrong that demands to be righted.”
The issue of admitting the Nation’s Capital as the 51st state in the Union has been one of fiery debate in recent years. Typically, Democrats support the idea, and Republicans oppose it.
In April, House Democrats passed the “DC Admission Act” which would grant the 700,000 people living in the district governing representation in the House and Senate. However, the Senate failed to pass on the legislation to President Biden, who supported the bill.
Republicans often justify their opposition to the D.C. statehood by calling the move a power grab from Democrats who want to tip the scales of Congress in their favor. Additionally, GOP lawmakers argue Congress does not have the authority to make D.C. a state, saying the measure would have to be taken by an amendment to the Constitution.
On the topic, Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC) said, “This is about expanding the Senate map to accommodate the most radical agenda that I’ve ever seen since I’ve been up here.”
Additionally, Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) remarked, “Legally Congress does not have the power to override the Constitution and that’s to me the most important issue here.”
Mayor Bowser’s comments surrounding the Flag Day protest indicate Republican speculation that this is merely a political move to impact the entire nation, rather than an attempt to adhere to the American principle “no taxation without representation” may be correct.
“As Americans nationwide brace for a decision on the future of Roe v. Wade, we are also reminded that DC’s disenfranchisement impacts not just Americans living in D.C., but Americans nationwide who share our values,” Bowser said. “While the stakes are even higher for Washingtonians, we stand shoulder to shoulder with the majority of Americans who believe in a woman’s right to choose.”