DEMOCRAT TV: MSNBC Suddenly ‘Intrigued’ By Democracy Case for D.C. Statehood

The Democratic National Committee doesn’t need to start its own network when it has MSNBC. That point was proved yet again on Monday as MSNBC Live’s hosts and journalists admitted to suddenly being “intrigued” by the “democracy reform” case pushed by Democrats for D.C. statehood. Conveniently, that would work out well for Democrats as they’d almost certainly get two more senators. 

MSNBC Live host Hallie Jackson and congressional correspondent Garrett Haake excitedly pushed this effort with Jackson reporting that proponents of statehood “are trying to appeal to people beyond the Beltway, framing D.C. statehood as part of the movement for voting and social justice reform and ending the senate filibuster.”

 

 

Welcoming Haake to the segment, Jackson asked, “do Democrats have enough momentum this time around to get D.C. Statehood passed in the Senate? How are they framing it differently? I’m intrigued, not just, full disclosure as a D.C. resident, but I’m intrigued by the idea that they are tying it to the broader issue of democracy reforms.”

Haake, repeating Democratic talking points, agreed:

That’s right. The idea is, who counts? Who matters? Who should be part of the democracy? D.C. Has 700,000 residents, a plurality of them African-American. Right now, no voting representation in Congress. So, Democrats are linking the issue of D.C. Statehood not just to the representation of we 700,000 who live here but also to the broader democracy reform questions. The filibuster, how does your vote count? What should be your available access to democracy? So, we will see this hearing today. 

After some more talk about the filibuster and the possibility of Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski supporting statehood for D.C., Haake added, “But the other things going for D.C. Statehood, it has gotten more national exposure around the issues of the protests over the course of the summer and who is responsible for policing the district. The insurrection here at Capitol Hill and who’s responsible for controlling the National Guard which is supposed to protect the district in situations like that.”

In a segment that omitted the serious constitutional issues surrounding D.C. statehood, it is not surprising that Haake neglected to mention that even if D.C. became a state, Capitol Hill would still be part of the constitutionally-mandated federal district. 

This segment was sponsored by Subway.

Here is a transcript for the March 22 show:

MSNBC

MSNBC Live with Hallie Jackson

10:58 AM ET:

HALLIE JACKSON: They are trying to appeal to people beyond the Beltway, framing D.C. Statehood as part of the movement for voting and social justice reform and ending the senate filibuster. Garrett Haake is on Capitol Hill. Garrett, do Democrats have enough momentum this time around to get D.C. Statehood passed in the Senate? How are they framing it differently? I’m intrigued, not just, full disclosure as a D.C. resident, but I’m intrigued by the idea that they are tying it to the broader issue of democracy reforms. 

GARRETT HAAKE: That’s right. The idea is, who counts? Who matters? Who should be part of the democracy? D.C. Has 700,000 residents, a plurality of them African-American. Right now, no voting representation in Congress. So, Democrats are linking the issue of D.C. Statehood not just to the representation of we 700,000 who live here but also to the broader democracy reform questions. The filibuster, how does your vote count? What should be your available access to democracy? So, we will see this hearing today. We will likely see D.C. statehood pass in the House as it did during the last Congress. When it gets kicked to the Senate, this is in the sweet spot for the debate about removing the filibuster because it is possible to see how Democrats could get to 50 or maybe 51 votes. There’s an interesting possibility of Lisa Murkowski hanging out there from a state that was not always a state herself, being someone who might be in favor of adding D.C. as the 51st state but the idea of getting this past the filibuster, again it links back in to the question of whose vote counts and how. But the other things going for D.C. Statehood, it has gotten more national exposure around the issues of the protests over the course of the summer and who is responsible for policing the district. The insurrection here at Capitol Hill and who’s responsible for controlling the National Guard which is supposed to protect the district in situations like that. And on COVID response. D.C. And the 700,000 residents, more people than live in Vermont didn’t get treated with the same formula as other states which held back the nation’s capitol’s ability to respond to COVID crisis.

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