January 27, 2012

The Post was wrong to suggest in the Jan. 23 editorial “An olive branch for D.C.” that D.C. officials would be wasting their time taking their statehood bid to the legislatures of the 50 states. I accompanied D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray (D) on his trip Friday to New Hampshire to lobby for the only real solution for the inequality that exists in the District: statehood. 

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, is offering District residents control over some of our own money but still no say in the billions we pay in federal taxes every year, no voice in national decisions that affect our lives every day and no control over our laws or legal system. What a deal.

The more we agree to capitulate to something less than statehood, the more we perpetuate the unfair, unjust and un-American system of governance holding us down. To add insult to injury, in the name of political expediency, Mr. Issa wants to make our “autonomy” conditional, so I guess we should call it budget “semi-autonomy,” which is what we already have.

If Mr. Issa really wants to be a friend to the District, let him become a co-sponsor of the House statehood bill.

Michael D. Brown, Washington

The writer, a Democrat, is a shadow U.S. senator from the District.