D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser is pushing hard for D.C. statehood, and she seems to have hit on an interesting strategy, the “Tennessee Strategy” (boldface mine):
Aides to Bowser said a broader push for statehood would follow a process known as the “Tennessee model.” When Tennessee was admitted to the union as the 16th state, it was a federal territory, much like the nation’s capital. Congress agreed to allow Tennessee to become a state without ratification by the existing states. Instead, it required a vote of residents in the territory to approve a state constitution and a pledge to form a republic-style government.
Bowser’s administration has been working to update a constitution approved by D.C. voters in 1982 for just such a state. That petition, submitted by then-Mayor Marion Barry, was ignored by Congress.
If it was allowable for Tennessee, then it should be allowed for the District. Keep in mind, this doesn’t overturn Congress’ constitutional ability to overturn D.C. laws, but personally, I’m alright with that. As long as there are senators who can keep federal agencies off our backs (looking at you Transportation Secretary Foxx), then we’re doing pretty well.
In keeping with the older Mad Biologist tradition of tangentially related video, we end with the following: