Norton Remarks at Federal Tax Counter Press Conference

Feb 10, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) released her remarks from the Wilson Building today, which call attention to the $6.5 billion that the District sends to the federal government.  Despite paying the highest federal taxes per capita, District residents do not have a voting member of Congress or full self-government.  The rallying cry of the Revolutionary War was “No Taxation Without Representation.”  Sadly, that goal has not been realized for District residents.

“We appreciate the neon sign that the Mayor and the D.C. Council keep in place outside of our centrally located City Hall, the Wilson Building, where visitors and residents alike can see the more than $6.5 billion D.C. residents pay to support their government without representation.

“During the Revolutionary War, the rallying cry of the colonists was ‘No Taxation Without Representation.’  Only in the nation’s capital does that rallying cry still sound.  This remains for us, despite our nation’s founding principle that no resident should be taxed by a government that denies representation in that government. Yet today, District of Columbia residents not only pay taxes, they pay the highest federal per capita taxes of any jurisdiction. Our residents contribute more than 22 current states to support the federal government.

“The taxation issue strikes at the heart of our case for D.C. statehood.  D.C. residents pay the same federal taxes as other Americans, and in turn demand the same representation.  Nobody likes paying taxes, but the residents of the District particularly don’t enjoy paying millions of dollars to support the federal government without the representation their taxes have purchased.

“Tomorrow, the House will take a historic step to right this wrong.  Thanks to the leadership of Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney, the House Oversight Committee will mark up and vote on our D.C. statehood bill and send it to the House floor.

“For 219 years, the citizens of our nation’s capital have not been equal to other Americans.  For 219 years, Congress has ignored this inequality and disenfranchisement on their doorstep.  Tomorrow, that changes with a vote in the Oversight Committee.  Before 2020 ends, the House of Representatives will vote to make the District of Columbia the 51st state of the United States.”