D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine emphasized the importance of ramping up efforts that support the ongoing initiative to secure statehood for the District during a meeting with members of the D.C. Democratic State Committee on Nov. 2.
“There was a devastating recent [Gallop] poll that stated 64 percent of Americans oppose D.C. statehood,” Racine said. “That poll tells us what we need to do. It is my opinion that the efforts of those who support statehood are too narrow given who we are trying to persuade.”
To illustrate his point, he cited a study conducted by the Southern Poverty Law Center released in February which reported 92 percent of high school students did not think disagreements over slavery caused the Civil War. He said that study’s results and the Gallop poll serve as examples of an “education gap.”
“We need to educate people who matter the most to us,” Racine said. “We need to make contacts with people who have similar values and make the case for statehood outside of D.C. And we need to reach young people to educate them on this.”
Racine asserts that Republicans have long remained unsupportive of D.C. statehood because of a reluctance in making way for two more Democrats in the U.S. Senate. He says one possible compromise between the parties might be requiring that the two seats have the requirement that the two positions be filled by one Democratic and one Republican, both representing the District.
“That’s just a thought, nothing else,” he said. “In politics, you have to make compromises and I don’t see the GOP accepting two Democrats from D.C.”
In other matters, Racine told the Informer he would consider serving in a Democratic administration if the party recaptures the White House in 2020. Speculation has arisen that Racine could be tagged as the U.S. attorney general if the Democrats can defeat Trump and the Republican Party.
“I like my current job and would have to consider my personal circumstances but I would entertain opportunities to help a Democratic president,” he said.
District Women in Politics Endorse Zhang
Yilin Zhang, a candidate for the Democratic nomination for Ward 2 D.C. council member, has been endorsed by DC Women in Politics. The organization seeks to increase the number of women in elected office in the District and to enhance the skills and techniques of those women as they enter the political arena.
President Anita Shelton says Zhang brings a fresh start to Ward 2 politics.
“She is unencumbered by the mistakes of Jack Evans,” Shelton said, speaking of the ward’s embattled longtime council member. “The candidates she is running against have supported Evans in the past but she would bring a fresh perspective to the position. We also feel that she will articulate the needs of low-income people in the ward and bring diversity to the council.”
Shelton said Zhang, who works in the healthcare field, would also provide vital knowledge and views that would benefit the District and the Council’s on issues related to women’s health.
If elected in the June 2 Democratic Party primary and the Nov. 3 general election, Zhang will be the first woman to represent Ward 2.
Zhang expressed appreciation following the announcement of the endorsement.
“I am honored to receive an endorsement from DC Women in Politics,” she said. “I am a big fan of their work to promote women and women’s issues and their strong commitment to a democracy that is inclusive of all women.”