Democrats’ push to transform the liberal enclave of Washington, D.C., into a state could involve a number of hidden costs — beyond the political cost Republicans would pay if Democrats received extra seats in the U.S. Congress due to the change.
The House passed H.R. 51, the bill granting statehood to the district, last week, but the legislation may not go much further than the Senate.
Not all Senate Democrats have expressed support for the move, and no Republicans have, all but dooming the bill’s chances of passage with the 60 votes necessary.
The Congressional Budget Office estimated last year that granting statehood to the district would cost at least $76 million over a decade. Most of that cost would relate to staffing the two new U.S. senators who would represent the state.
But other costs could inflate the price tag significantly, depending on how the new