May 5, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trump says Republicans wouldn't let Washington, D.C., become a state

President Trump.
Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Trump said that Washington, D.C., will never become a state because Republicans wouldn't agree to giving Democrats more seats in Congress, in an exclusive interview with the New York Post on Monday.

The big picture: The issue of statehood has been a talking point in D.C. for years, with Republicans generally opposed to the idea. The District currently has a non-voting delegate in the House and no representation in the Senate. If the capital city became a state, it would have one House member and two senators.

Where it stands: The House Oversight Committee voted to pass legislation to grant statehood to D.C. in February. But that has yet to reach the full House for a vote.

What he's saying:

“They want to do that so they pick up two automatic Democrat — you know it’s a 100 percent Democrat, basically — so why would the Republicans ever do that? That’ll never happen unless we have some very, very stupid Republicans around that I don’t think you do. You understand that, right?”
"Why don’t you just take two senators and put them in there? No, it’s not gonna happen. And it how many House seats is it? Like four, three or four? Whatever it is. You’d have three or four more congressmen and two more senators, every single day of every single year. And it would never change. No, the Republicans would never do that.”
— Trump to the New York Post

Worth noting: The nation's capital has voted overwhelmingly Democratic in recent years, with Trump picking up around 4% of the vote in 2016. Nearly 86% of D.C. residents supported statehood in the same election.

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