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April 21, 2015

Posts in "DC-Hill Relations"

April 20, 2015

Norton Warns GOP: Don’t Tread on D.C.

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

For the first time in more than two decades, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee is set to take up a resolution aimed at blocking a D.C. bill Tuesday, to the chagrin of the District’s congressional delegate.

At issue is the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Act the D.C. Council approved in January, which aims to prohibit workplace discrimination based on reproductive health decisions. Conservatives say the act could force employers to act contrary to their religious beliefs, violating religious freedom. Full story

April 15, 2015

Calls for D.C. Rights Mount on Tax Day, Emancipation Day

Woodrow Landfair, left, and a man named David who declined to give his last name, sit along 3rd St., on the Mall while bound to a "liberty pole" as part of a vigil to draw attention to the District's lack of full representation in Congress. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Protesters attach themselves to a “liberty pole” as part of a vigil to draw attention to D.C.’s lack of full representation in Congress. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

While April 15 might just be a filing deadline for most Americans, for D.C. residents, it’s a day when the words that adorn their license plates hit home.

“The slogan ‘taxation without representation’ is something you would hope had perished with the end of the Revolutionary War, but it still applies today to the 650,000 Americans who call the District of Columbia home,” Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., said in a statement Wednesday. “We feel our status as lesser citizens especially on April 15.” Full story

April 14, 2015

Congress Looks to Act on Blocking D.C. Bills

Black introduced a resolution Monday to block a D.C. bill. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Black introduced a resolution Monday to block a D.C. bill. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Congress has some more time to deal with two District of Columbia bills that have caused some backlash from lawmakers, but the clock is ticking.

The two bills in question are the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Act and the Human Rights Amendment Act, which the D.C. government approved in January. Some Republican lawmakers say the bills violate religious freedom and introduced disapproval resolutions in the House and Senate aimed at blocking the bills. Full story

April 9, 2015

‘Deposition’ or ‘Productive Dialogue’? Depends on Whom You Ask

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

With members of Congress back home or traveling overseas during the congressional recess, District of Columbia activists headed to Capitol Hill to encourage staffers to respect District autonomy. What happened? The answer ranges from what one person described as a “deposition” to what another said was a “productive dialogue.”

On April 2, D.C. activists met with House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Jason Chaffetz’s staff to discuss congressional oversight over D.C. The meeting came two weeks after the activists dressed up in colonial clothing and presented a “peace pipe” to Chaffetz’s staff, following a confrontation between the Utah Republican and the D.C. government over the District’s marijuana policy. Full story

April 1, 2015

Senate GOP Presidential Hopefuls Take On D.C.

Cruz, left, and Rubio, right, both introduced measures targeting D.C. laws. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Cruz, left, and Rubio, right, both introduced measures targeting D.C. laws. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

In the course of eight days, two Senate Republicans eyeing the presidency introduced measures to strike down District of Columbia laws, causing local officials and activists to accuse them of using the District for their own political gain.

“I think it’s no accident that both of these senators just before announcing [their interest in running for president], try to use the District as the fallback for their base,” Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., said in a March 27 phone interview. “It’s not as if we have the right to keep people interfering with our local laws. So why not pick on us?” Full story

March 26, 2015

Rubio, Jordan Target D.C.’s Local Control Over Gun Regulations

Rubio wants to loosen D.C. gun laws. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rubio wants to loosen D.C. gun laws. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida and Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio introduced a bill Thursday aimed at loosening the District of Columbia’s gun laws.

The Republican lawmakers’ bill, titled the Second Amendment Enforcement Act of 2015, states that D.C. “remains one of the most dangerous large cities in the United States.” The text states that D.C.’s regulations prevent citizens from protecting themselves against violent crime. Full story

Mendelson to Lankford: D.C. Bills Don’t Violate Religious Freedom

Mendelson, left, sent a letter to Lankford arguing the bills do not violate religious freedom. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Mendelson, left, sent a letter to Lankford arguing the bills do not violate religious freedom. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

After Republican Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and James Lankford of Oklahoma introduced resolutions of disapproval to block two District of Columbia bills from becoming law, the D.C. Council chairman took his argument in support of the bills directly to Lankford.

“There is no intent on our part to violate the rights of others, such as freedom of religion,” Council Chairman Phil Mendelson wrote in a two-page letter sent to Lankford on March 20. Full story

March 20, 2015

Catholic Leaders Backing Cruz’s D.C. Resolution

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The Cruz D.C. resolution is getting attention. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Influential Catholic leaders sent a letter to senators Friday urging them to support Republican Sens. Ted Cruz’s and James Lankford’s effort to block two D.C. bills.

This week, Cruz introduced two joint resolutions of disapproval, with Lankford, an Oklahoma Republican, as a co-sponsor, aimed at striking down the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Act and the Human Rights Amendment Act, which the D.C. government approved in January. The senators say the bills violate religious freedom and the Catholic leaders agree.

Full story

March 18, 2015

Cruz, Lankford Move to Block D.C. Bills

Cruz moved to block a D.C. law Wednesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Cruz moved to block a D.C. law Wednesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Republican Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and James Lankford of Oklahoma introduced resolutions of disapproval Wednesday to strike down two D.C. bills they say violate religious freedom.

The resolutions target the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Act and the Human Rights Amendment Act, which the D.C. government approved in January. Full story

March 17, 2015

‘Colonists’ Ask Chaffetz to Respect D.C.

Adam Eidinger, right, chairman of the DC Cannabis Campaign, hands a “peace pipe” to a staffer in the Rayburn office of Rep. Jason Chaffetz. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Dressed head to toe in colonial garb, a handful of District of Columbia activists went to Rep. Jason Chaffetz’s office Tuesday afternoon to ask the Utah Republican to respect D.C. laws.

“We pay taxes but we don’t have any representation in this Congress,” Nikolas Schiller of the D.C. Cannabis Campaign told Chaffetz’s staff. “We have a delegate, and she’s awesome, but we think she should be a representative just like Jason.” Full story

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