America's independent, non-partisan advocate for overburdened taxpayers.

 

Blog Contributors

Brandon Arnold
Executive Vice President 

Dan Barrett
Research and Outreach Manager 

Melodie Bowler
Government Affairs Intern 

Demian Brady
Director of Research 

Christina DiSomma
Communications Intern 

Jihun Han
Communications Intern 

Timothy Howland
Creative Content Manager 

Samantha Jordan
Communications Intern 

Curtis Kalin
Communications Intern 

Ross Kaminsky
Blog Contributor 

David Keating
Blog Contributor 

Douglas Kellogg
Communications Manager 

Sharon Koss
Government Affairs Intern 

Michael Liguori
Government Affairs Intern 

Richard Lipman
Director of Development 

Joe Michalowski
Government Affairs Intern 

Diana Oprinescu
Communications Intern 

Austin Peters
Communications Intern 

Kristina Rasmussen
Blog Contributor 

Taxpayer's Tab Subscribers React to DC Statehood


Dan Barrett
August 21, 2013

On Friday, NTU Foundation sent out the latest edition of The Taxpayer's Tab -- a weekly update of BillTally research -- and we got quite a few replies from Tab subscribers. Below is a selection of those responses and some further detail:

"[DC Statehood] looks like another money pit that should be avoided. If Congress does anything it should be the least expensive fix." – Stephen F

If D.C. was made a full-fledged state, federal spending could technically go down. How? The District government would be given the authority to levy taxes on residents and consumers, which would go towards city operating budgets and require less federal tax dollars. This, of course, assumes that the D.C. and federal governments would react to the new tax scheme by balancing spending in a revenue-neutral way.

In regards to the "least expensive fix" to the question of D.C. statehood vs. territorial rights, there are a couple of ways to look at it. NTUF's BillTally project only tracks proposed changes in federal spending, so, if D.C. was made a regular territory, like Puerto Rico or Guam, residents would not pay the full federal income tax. This would result in lower tax revenues. On the other hand, by making D.C. a state, the federal government would spend less direct money on the city and switch to transfer payments, like Medicaid matching funds. From our analysis, we assume that making D.C. a state would ultimately lead to more spending.

"The main reason for not granting statehood to Washington, D.C. is that our seat of national government would be subject to a single state, i.e. New Columbia, instead of retaining power over a small (10 square miles), exceedingly vocal population of 750,000 who continue to demonstrate their incapability to govern their own potholes, education system, and parking maze of signs. Anyone who has worked or lived there knows firsthand." – Larry K

We alluded to a situation in 1783 where unpaid soldiers besieged Congress in Philadelphia and the city did not prevent or break up the so-called Pennsylvania Mutiny. James Madison later argued that a national government would need a federalized city to have the authority to guarantee its own safety. However, when it comes to the District maintaining local infrastructure and education, it is a complicated issue. One argument is that the District should be able to exert more local control to spend money on targeted projects/improvements, either as a state or a city government with more autonomy. Others side with the Constitution, thinking that if Congress thinks it can help run a country, it ought to be able to properly operate a city.  

"[DC Statehood] is extremely interesting from a Constitutional viewpoint and also a historical viewpoint ... BUT it would certainly bring about more Democratic Senators (2) and 2 more Democratic Congressmen. I say, let's move the capitol to northwestern Kansas (where it gets pretty chilly and snowy in the winter and subject to tornadoes in the warmer months). There is also the lingering question about Puerto Rico as well." – Red M

Looking at legislation introduced so far in the 113th Congress, I haven't seen any bill that would move the nation's capitol across the country. But a few things to consider if you’d want to do that. Rural Kansas does not have anywhere close to the infrastructure that could support all the government offices that would be required there (think Congress, the President, support personnel for them and cabinet agencies, and protection), not to mention the day-to-day private economy like food sellers, construction workers, and housing. To accomplish a move, you would have to have a massive government spending increase. One other point, by moving out to Kansas, are you anticipating any future D.C. Representative or Senator to lean Republican? If so, how do you justify such a move to those on the other side of the aisle?

"I'm opposed to them having Senators or statehood as such but I’m ok with them having a Representative based on their population." – John D

Depending on your exact intensions, John D, it still does not solve the current problem. Washington D.C. residents do not live in a state and so are not represented in Congress BUT, unless all of the U.S.'s territories and protectorates, those same residents are required to pay federal income taxes. This is where the "Taxation Without Representation" argument gains ground. So the possible solutions, at least highlighted in the latest Taxpayer's Tab, include expanding local D.C. autonomy, granting statehood or making D.C. apart of Maryland, or (as a quick technical fix) exempting D.C. residents from federal income taxes.

"I think Congress should retrocede the District back to Maryland." – Elsie G

An interesting idea, Elsie G. This would avoid granting D.C. statehood while giving local residents proper representation and taxation. However, as mentioned above, there remains the question of having Congress guarantee its own safety. If D.C. is retroceded back to Maryland, it is unclear whether or not Congress could do that. Now, there have been proposals to give all D.C. land back to Maryland except for the inner core, which Congress would still oversee. This alternative would help most residents gain representation by becoming Maryland citizens but what happens to those living right near Capitol Hill?

Thank you to everyone who replies to the Tab each week with what they think Congress should do, either in regards to a particular piece of legislation or how to resolve a challenge facing our nation.

Not in the inner circle of Tab subscribers? Go here and join in the discussion! Otherwise, if you have something you'd like for NTU Foundation researchers to know about (federal spending, budgets, & regulations), email us at ntuf@ntu.org.


 

Comment on this blog

Nickname
Comment
Enter this word:

User Comments

Submitted by jack13 at: August 30, 2014
PC Cleaner will clear, speedup, and secure your Computer. The speed of your computer wills accelerate from filling along with your PC by disabling unneeded service. Blackboard Login

Submitted by asdsd at: August 30, 2014
I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article. I am hoping the same best work from you in the future as well.. https://www.rebelmouse.com/dramamethodreview/

Submitted by asdsd at: August 30, 2014
I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often. like this one at www rebelmouse

Submitted by lemon detox at: August 29, 2014
very nice article about the lemon detox diet

Submitted by kaonao at: August 29, 2014
Id certainly will talk about this blog with my group. I would mention that most of us visitors are really endowed to exist here while Many individuals will feel very much helped agen bola online

Submitted by Aditech at: August 29, 2014
The world is changing fast. people are also being changed.day by day we are becoming more dependant on degital system.yoU make me think of this really.You have a nice way of sharing your thoughts. best home warranty companies home warranty prices

Submitted by asdsd at: August 28, 2014
Im no expert, but I believe you just made an excellent point. You certainly fully understand what youre speaking about, and I can truly get behind that. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P1t13ru_DMo

Submitted by asdsd at: August 28, 2014
I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often. https://www.rebelmouse.com/whatmensecretlywantreview/

Submitted by https://www.rebelmouse.com/acnenomorebook/ at: August 28, 2014
which would go towards city operating budgets and require less federal tax dollars. This, of course, assumes that the D.C. and federal governments would react to the new tax scheme . https://www.rebelmouse.com/acnenomorebook/

Submitted by officialworking00 at: August 28, 2014
This is a smart blog. I mean it. You have so much knowledge about this issue, and so much passion. You also know how to make people rally behind it. DTG Printers

Submitted by officialworking00 at: August 28, 2014
I recently found many useful information in your website especially this blog page. Among the lots of comments on your articles. Thanks for sharing. zanzibar car rental

Submitted by best pc cleaner at: August 27, 2014
PC Cleaner will clear, speedup, and secure your Computer. The speed of your computer wills accelerate from filling along with your PC by disabling unneeded service. website

Submitted by micheljhon at: August 27, 2014
federal governments would react to the new tax scheme by balancing spending in a revenue-neutral wa... best link building service forum

Submitted by micheljhon at: August 27, 2014
This, of course, assumes that the D.C. and federal governments would react to the new tax scheme by balancing spending in a revenue-neutral wa.. best link building service forum

Submitted by anman at: August 27, 2014
I just subscribe your blog...burying a dog fence wire

Submitted by BlackMen at: August 27, 2014
which would go towards city operating budgets and require less federal tax dollars. This, of course, assumes that the D.C. and federal governments would react to the new tax scheme by balancing spending in a revenue-neutral way.backlink service

Submitted by anman at: August 27, 2014
just the information I am finding ...mega bus uk

Submitted by anman at: August 27, 2014
This is just the information I am finding everywhere....bacterialvaginosisfreedom.co.uk

Submitted by anman at: August 27, 2014
Thanks for your blog, I just subscribe your blog....https://www.rebelmouse.com/pregnancy_miracle/

Submitted by james at: August 27, 2014
am finding everywhere. Thanks for your blog, I just subscribe your blog. This is a nice blog http://www.fiverr.com/technologies360/make-50-manual-blog-comment-on-actual-pr-6-to-20