Bravo John Oliver – Gives National Attention to DC’s Colonial Plight
In only his second season, HBO’s Last Week Tonight host John Oliver has made such a mark on Washington that inside the beltway publication National Journal called him the Most Powerful Tech Lobbyist in the Country. For example, his defense of net neutrality led the Federal Communications Commission’s servers to crash due to the volume of response he solicited.
In March he did a wonderful piece on the lack of voting rights in Congress for U.S. territories whose citizens fight in our wars (but who do not pay federal taxes), but which had one glaring omission – the District of Columbia which pays federal taxes and also has no voting rights in Congress.
Last night, Oliver corrected that oversight with gusto, pointing out that we are the only major democracy to deny voting rights to its capitol residents.
As a former Washingtonian who now lives in represented Santa Monica, California, let me stress that this is not a DC issue, it is a democracy issue. It is about whether we are going to finally bring the American Revolution to our seat of government where taxation without representation still reigns supreme. That is why for the last several Independence Day’s, I have written to stress that the revolution should not end at the District’s borders, including this July’s Huffington Post piece “Ten Reasons Why You Should Care About D.C. Voting Rights.”
Finally, the Oliver segment includes excerpts from an impassioned speech by D.C.’s Congressional Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton on the House Floor for D.C. Voting Rights. The full speech is below.