The Washington Post

The trouble with ‘no taxation, no representation’

Over the weekend The Post revisited an idea that advocates have floated now and again over two decades: no representation and no taxation. Much like the territories that have no vote, supporters of the proposal say that exempting D.C. residents from federal taxes would be the only fair — and easy — way to resolve the city’s longstanding second-class status. You don’t want to give us representation? Fine, then we’re not paying into the federal government.

It’s an idea with surprising staying power and bipartisan support, though it’s never gone far beyond a debate. Democrats and Republicans have supported it — it’s probably the only thing that The Rev. Jesse Jackson and former South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint would agree on, for one. Even the D.C. Council sided with it in 1994, passing a resolution asking Congress to exempt D.C. residents from federal taxes until they could gain meaningful representation on Capitol Hill. Last year Republican shadow senator candidate Nelson Rimensyder made that exemption the entire focus of his campaign.

[Continue reading Martin Austermuhle’s post at]

Martin Austermuhle blogs at DCist . The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.


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