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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.

Go deeper

Updated Aug 12, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Pelosi says Mnuchin told her White House is "not budging" on stimulus position

Democrats and the Trump administration remain "miles apart" on negotiations over a coronavirus stimulus deal, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said on Wednesday.

The latest: Around 3 p.m., Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) issued a statement saying that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had initiated a phone call and made clear that the White House is "not budging from their position concerning the size and scope of a legislative package."

Biden Cabinet confirmation schedule: When to watch hearings

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on Jan. 16 in Wilmington, Delaware. Photo: Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

The first hearings for President-elect Joe Biden's Cabinet nominations begin on Tuesday, with testimony from his picks to lead the departments of State, Homeland and Defense.

Why it matters: It's been a slow start for a process that usually takes place days or weeks earlier for incoming presidents. The first slate of nominees will appear on Tuesday before a Republican-controlled Senate, but that will change once the new Democratic senators-elect from Georgia are sworn in.

Kamala Harris resigns from Senate seat ahead of inauguration

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. Photo: Mason Trinca/Getty Images

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris submitted her resignation from her seat in the U.S. Senate on Monday, two days before she will be sworn into her new role.

What's next: California Gov. Gavin Newsom has selected California Secretary of State Alex Padilla to serve out the rest of Harris' term, which ends in 2022.

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