News Release

D.C. Emancipation Day: Taxation without Representation


Today is D.C. Emancipation Day, an official holiday in the city of Washington (and the reason the IRS is closed today).

The Washington Post notes in an editorial today: “On this day in 1862 President Abraham Lincoln signed an act that ended slavery in the District of Columbia. … [I]t’s appropriate that it serve as a vehicle to end another injustice. Today, hundreds, perhaps thousands, of people will march on Congress to call attention to the disenfranchisement of this nation’s capital city.” The District of Columbia does not have voting representation in Congress.

A grassroots organizer who has served on numerous boards, Hanes is largely responsible for D.C. Emancipation Day. She had co-founded D.C. Reading is Fundamental and “while I was volunteering, I stumbled on the information in my research that Lincoln had freed the slaves in D.C. nine months before issuing the Emancipation Proclamation that everyone knows about. We have to understand where we came from, who we are and where we’ve got to go to be free. In D.C., we’re not free. We have taxation without representation. We should have full representation like everyone else in the 50 states.”

While many will be marching for representation for D.C., Hanes, who is 80 and homebound, will be available for phone interviews at the above number.
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Jenkins is with the Stand Up! for Democracy in D.C. Coalition (Free D.C.).
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For further background on D.C. representation, see: “Democracy for D.C.?” (IPA’s March 15 news release).

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167