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Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton

Representing the District of Columbia

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Emancipation of DC Slaves 156 years Ago Left City without the Equality DC Residents Still Seek

Apr 13, 2018
Blog

By Eleanor Holmes Norton

Today, DC begins its commemoration of DC Emancipation Day, when slaves in the nation’s capital were freed 9 months before the Emancipation Proclamation. Yet, DC residents, 156 years later, still are not free. Congress can overturn local laws nowhere else except in the District of Columbia, and collect federal taxes without representation.

The residents of the nation’s capital have more than paid the price for their citizenship. Residents have fought and died in every U.S. war, including the Revolutionary War, which created the United States of America. And DC residents rank number one per capita in taxes paid to support the United States government.

We are well within our rights to ask Congress for Congress to grant the District of Columbia full emancipation by making the District the 51st state.