Posts Tagged ‘Congress’

IDwashingtondc: Taxation Without Representation


People always seem to wonder what state Washington, D.C. is in. And I can’t really answer them. It’s not part of any state, I say, and of course it is not a state itself, either. This doesn’t seem to make sense to people.

Nor does it make sense to me. As capital of the United States of America, the District of Columbia was created to be the seat of government, neutral of all state laws. But as a result, the District’s 630,000-some residents today have no voice in U.S. Congress.

In 2000, the District of Columbia began issuing license plates adorned with the motto Taxation Without Representation, which highlighted the fact that D.C. residents pay Federal taxes, but do not have representation in Congress. In a show of support for the city, President Bill Clinton used the new plates on his presidential limousine, only to have them removed by George W. Bush when we took office a few months later.

While the presidential motorcade has been equipped with the stripped-down D.C. license plates since then, President Barack Obama finally brought back the taxation plates as he headed to a community service engagement at a D.C. school last week. See the full article from Politico below:

Obama's new plates

Obama’s new plates

Obama’s car gets ‘taxation without representation’ plates

By: Jennifer Epstein; 19 January 2013; Politico

President Obama’s car got new license plates Saturday in a show of support for the District of Columbia’s efforts to get greater recognition from the federal government.

Obama’s black SUV sported “taxation without representation” plates as he headed to a District school for a community service project. Three cars in his motorcade now with the new plates already had D.C. plates, but they read “” instead of sporting the motto.

White House press secretary Jay Carney said on Thursday that Obama had decided to put the plates on the car in recognition of the District’s residents.

“President Obama now has lived in the District for four years and has seen firsthand how patently unfair it is for working families in D.C. to work hard, raise children, and pay taxes without having a vote in Congress,” Carney said. “Attaching these plates to the presidential vehicles demonstrates the president’s commitment to the principle of full representation for the people of the District of Columbia and his willingness to fight for voting rights, home rule, and budget autonomy for the District.”

Former President Bill Clinton put “taxation” plates on his car at the very end of his second term, but George W. Bush had them removed when he took office.

A new license plate design often means a new plate number, but not so for the president, who keeps “800 002” on his car, whether an SUV or a sedan.

Not-so-edge DC plates used by the Bush administration

Not-so-edgy DC plates used by the Bush administration