changes to democracy

Should Washington, D.C., be granted statehood?

Yes

Yes, supports

Joe Biden

Former vice president

"You should be a state," Biden said at a press conference with the D.C. mayor in 2015.

Candidate positions highlighted
Joe Biden
Biden

Michael Bennet (Dropped out)

U.S. senator, Colorado

Bennet is no longer running for president. Bennet co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act.

Candidate positions highlighted
Michael Bennet
Bennet

Mike Bloomberg (Dropped out)

Former New York mayor

Bloomberg is no longer running for president. “This city’s future is brighter than ever – and a lot of the credit for that goes to my friend, Mayor Muriel Bowser. She is doing a terrific job – and I hope that someday soon we’ll be calling her Governor Bowser. The time has come for D.C. to become a state – with full voting rights,” Bloomberg said at a U.S. Conference of Mayors meeting.

Candidate positions highlighted
Mike Bloomberg
Bloomberg

Cory Booker (Dropped out)

U.S. senator, New Jersey

Booker is no longer running for president. Booker co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act.

Candidate positions highlighted
Cory Booker
Booker

Steve Bullock (Dropped out)

Governor, Montana

Bullock is no longer running for president. “Yes. Every American deserves to have a voice in our democracy,” Bullock told The Post. “When American citizens are denied basic representation, our whole country suffers. About 700,000 Americans live in the District of Columbia. They deserve the same kind of representation afforded to the rest of the nation.”

Candidate positions highlighted
Steve Bullock
Bullock

Pete Buttigieg (Dropped out)

Former mayor, South Bend, Ind.

Buttigieg is no longer running for president. Buttigieg supports statehood for Washington, D.C., he tweeted in February.

Feb. 7: “Democracy is front and center right now, but some very important dimensions (like electoral college reform, DC statehood) get way too little attention. We must not become the first generation to see USA get less democratic versus more.”

Candidate positions highlighted
Pete Buttigieg
Buttigieg

Julian Castro (Dropped out)

Former mayor, San Antonio

Castro is no longer running for president. Castro tweeted support for a variety of voting changes in March, including statehood for Washington, D.C.

Candidate positions highlighted
Julian Castro
Castro

John Delaney (Dropped out)

Former U.S. representative, Maryland

Delaney is no longer running for president. Delaney co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act in 2017.

Candidate positions highlighted
John Delaney
Delaney

Bill de Blasio (Dropped out)

Mayor, New York City

de Blasio is no longer running for president. De Blasio co-sponsored a resolution in favor of D.C. statehood in 2016.

Candidate positions highlighted
Bill de Blasio
de Blasio

Tulsi Gabbard (Dropped out)

U.S. representative, Hawaii

Gabbard is no longer running for president. Gabbard co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act in 2019.

Candidate positions highlighted
Tulsi Gabbard
Gabbard

Kirsten Gillibrand (Dropped out)

U.S. senator, New York

Gillibrand is no longer running for president. Gillibrand co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act.

Candidate positions highlighted
Kirsten Gillibrand
Gillibrand

Kamala D. Harris (Dropped out)

U.S. senator, California

Harris is no longer running for president. Harris co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act.

Candidate positions highlighted
Kamala Harris
Harris

John Hickenlooper (Dropped out)

Former governor, Colorado

Hickenlooper is no longer running for president. Hickenlooper supports statehood for Washington, D.C., he told The Post.

Candidate positions highlighted
John Hickenlooper
Hickenlooper

Jay Inslee (Dropped out)

Governor, Washington state

Inslee is no longer running for president. Inslee supports statehood for Washington, D.C., he told The Post.

Candidate positions highlighted
Jay Inslee
Inslee

Amy Klobuchar (Dropped out)

U.S. senator, Minnesota

Klobuchar is no longer running for president. Klobuchar co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act.

Candidate positions highlighted
Amy Klobuchar
Klobuchar

Seth Moulton (Dropped out)

U.S. representative, Massachusetts

Moulton is no longer running for president. Moulton co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act in 2019.

Candidate positions highlighted
Seth Moulton
Moulton

Beto O'Rourke (Dropped out)

Former U.S. representative, Texas

O'Rourke is no longer running for president. O'Rourke supports D.C. statehood, he told The Post. He co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act in 2017.

Candidate positions highlighted
Beto O'Rourke
O'Rourke

Deval Patrick (Dropped out)

Former governor, Massachusetts

Patrick is no longer running for president. “If the people of Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico wish to pursue formal statehood, they will have that chance during a Patrick administration and will be welcomed as states,” his democracy agenda said.

Candidate positions highlighted
Deval Patrick
Patrick

Tim Ryan (Dropped out)

U.S. representative, Ohio

Ryan is no longer running for president. Ryan co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act in 2019.

Candidate positions highlighted
Tim Ryan
Ryan

Bernie Sanders (Dropped out)

U.S. senator, Vermont

Sanders is no longer running for president. Sanders co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act in 2017 and backed D.C. statehood in a CNN town hall in February 2019.

Candidate positions highlighted
Bernie Sanders
Sanders

Joe Sestak (Dropped out)

Former U.S. representative, Pennsylvania

Sestak is no longer running for president. Sestak supports statehood for Washington, D.C., he told The Post.

Candidate positions highlighted
Joe Sestak
Sestak

Tom Steyer (Dropped out)

Billionaire activist

Steyer is no longer running for president. Steyer supports statehood for Washington, D.C., he told The Post.

Candidate positions highlighted
Tom Steyer
Steyer

Eric Swalwell (Dropped out)

U.S. representative, California

Swalwell is no longer running for president. Swalwell supports statehood for Washington, D.C., he told The Post.

Candidate positions highlighted
Eric Swalwell
Swalwell

Elizabeth Warren (Dropped out)

U.S. senator, Massachusetts

Warren is no longer running for president. "We should admit DC as the 51st state," Warren told The Post. She co-sponsored the Washington, D.C. Admission Act.

Candidate positions highlighted
Elizabeth Warren
Warren

Marianne Williamson (Dropped out)

Author

Williamson is no longer running for president. Williamson supports statehood for Washington, D.C., she told The Post.

Candidate positions highlighted
Marianne Williamson
Williamson

Andrew Yang (Dropped out)

Tech entrepreneur

Yang is no longer running for president. Yang backed D.C. statehood in a tweet in December 2018.

Candidate positions highlighted
Andrew Yang
Yang

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Background House Democrats’ set of proposed democracy reforms includes making the District of Columbia the 51st state in the union. The District has a larger population than two states and lacks voting members in Congress, and its residents pay more in federal taxes than roughly 20 states, The Post has reported. The measure is expected to be opposed by Republicans, as it is likely to lead to the election of two additional Democratic senators, shifting the partisan balance of the Senate.

How candidate positions were compiled

The Washington Post sent a detailed questionnaire to every Democratic campaign asking whether it supports various changes to the Senate filibuster, U.S. elections and courts. Candidates with similar stances were organized into groups using a combination of those answers, legislative records, action taken in an executive role and other public comments, such as policy discussion on campaign websites, social media posts, interviews, town hall meetings and other news reports. See something we missed? Let us know.

This page will update as we learn more about the candidates’ plans. We also will note if candidates change their position on an issue. At initial publication, this page included major candidates who had announced a run for president. If a candidate dropped out after a question was published here, their stance is included under the "Show former candidates" option. If they dropped out before a question was first published, the Post did not reach out to get their stance.

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Candidate illustrations by Ben Kirchner.