Building State by State Constituencies

I had just finished up explaining the details of the DC statehood bill and the reasoning why I believed his boss should cosponsor the bill to a Legislative Director for a US Senator when he leaned back in his chair to think about it for a moment. He let out a sigh and said “what’s fascinating and unfortunate about this cause is that there’s no natural or active constituency for this cause in our state.” He is right and it is one of the biggest problems with the statehood movement because we have very few advocates for our cause in the 50 states who actively pressure their representatives on Capitol Hill to support our cause.

One effective and powerful method to reach wide audiences in each state is to get Op-Eds published about the statehood cause. Op-Eds can be used to both educate citizens about the issue and influence legislators to supporting the cause. Earlier this year I was honored to get an Op-Ed published in the Roanoke Times. After it was published my Virginian relatives followed up with calls and emails to both Senators offices asking them to support the bill. A few weeks later Senator Kaine cosponsored the bill. There is no way to know if the Op-Ed played a role in him joining the bill but it surely didn’t hurt. At a bare minimum the readers of the Roanoke Times got to learn about the statehood cause and why one person believes it is a cause all Americans should embrace.

In the lead up to a hearing on the statehood bill in the Senate it’s vitally important that we start getting this message out state by state and thus WE NEED YOUR HELP!!! If you’re from a state or have friends and family living in a state who would be interested in drafting a pro-DC statehood Op-Ed the time to do it is now. In particular we’re looking for people to send Op-Eds to papers in states where we’d specifically like to influence their Senators and get them to cosponsor the bill. Here’s our list of great states where we would like to prioritize getting Op-Eds published: Alaska, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Washington, and Vermont (but we totally support submitting Op-Eds in other states too). We can help provide you with all the information you’ll need but we want you or your friends and families in those states to use your own voices to advocate for statehood for the people of DC.

Let’s spread the word state by state about why statehood for the people of DC is a just and righteous cause that citizens and legislators should all embrace and support.

If you’re interested in writing an Op-Ed (500-600 words usually) or a shorter Letter-to-the-Editor (200-250 words) please send us an email and we’ll get you any and all information you’ll need to draft a great piece.


Josh Burch

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