District of Columbia House Voting Rights Act of 2010
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Maryland) plans to bring the District of Columbia House Voting Rights Act of 2010 to the floor for a vote this week.
The measure for the first time in more than 200 years would provide a seat in Congress for the District of Columbia which is mostly a Democratic district and would also create an additional at-large House of Representative seat for Utah, a state that votes largely Republican.
The Constitution's provisions governing the composition and election of the United States Congress is violated by the legislation. For example:
Article 1, Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution states: "The House of Representatives shall be composed of members chosen every second year by the people of the several states."
Article 1, Section 8, Clause 17 -- also known as the "District clause" -- states that Congress has the power "to exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States."
Granting the District of Columbia voting rights through the proposed legislation does not come under the Congress' authority. For congressional representation, a constitutional amendment would be required since the District of Columbia is not a state. Each member of Congress is required to take an oath and swear to “support and defend the Constitution” not to assist in its evisceration.
What Can You Do?
Urge your representative to NOT SUPPORT the District of Columbia House Voting Rights Act of 2010.
Capitol Hill Switchboard Number: 202-224-3121 (This number will direct you to the Capitol Hill operator. Ask for your senator's office.)
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The Honorable (full name)
United States House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515
Dear Representative (last name):