For the first time since President Joe Biden took office, the White House has officially backed D.C. statehood.
Press Secretary Jen Psaki confirmed Biden’s stance Thursday.
“He believes they deserve representation, that’s why he supports D.C. statehood,” she said.
Mayor Muriel Bowser seemed excited to get the support, tweeting, “Let’s get it done Mr. President.”
A congressional hearing on statehood is set for Monday.
“This hearing will accomplish important work in making the case for the D.C. statehood bill and educating the public about the need for it, and I encourage all D.C. residents to watch it,” Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton said.
Last June, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill that would make D.C. the 51st state and give 700,000 residents voting representation in the legislature. It was the first time a chamber of congress ever voted in favor of statehood, but the measure went nowhere in the Republican-controlled Senate.
The latest statehood bill was introduced with a record 202 original cosponsors and is almost guaranteed to pass in the House. The Senate bill, which has 40 cosponsors, faces another uphill battle.