D.C. Statehood: Obama Says "Just Do It"

The president urges congress to pass the legislation

By Kathy Banks
|  Friday, Apr 16, 2010  |  Updated 8:01 PM EDT
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Just Your Average Joe-Bama

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When he ran for the White House, President Barack Obama said he was a fan of voting rights for the District of Columbia in the U.S. House and Senate.

But he hasn’t really urged Congress to pass the legislation -- until today.
 
While honoring D.C. Emancipation Day, Obama said it’s time.
 
“Americans from all walks of life are gathering in Washington today to remind members of Congress that although D.C. residents pay federal taxes and serve honorably in our armed services, they do not have a vote in Congress or full autonomy over local issues,” Obama said in a statement.
 
He added, “And so I urge Congress to finally pass legislation that provides D.C. residents with voting representation and to take steps to improve the Home Rule Charter.”
 
First ldy Michelle Obama is also an advocate for our statehood rights. Dring a recent one-on-one interview with News 4’s Jim Vance, she seemed to acknowledge the fact that her husband has not embraced the idea.
 
"He is a supporter of the rights of citizens here in D.C. to have the vote," Mrs. Obama said, "and I don't think there's much convincing that you have to do there, you just have to get it done."
 
The statehood debate, which has been batted around Congress for decades, will be back in the news next week.
 
That’s when the House of Representatives is expected to tackle a bill that would include D.C. voting rights.
 
Could this be the year?

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