Appearing at a town hall meeting Wednesday night, Congressman Andy Harris (R-MD) argued that Washington, D.C. should not be a state because its residents make “irresponsible decisions.” District residents have been engaged in a decades-long fight for statehood in order to gain representation in Congress and full local control of their government.
In a confrontation with marijuana legalization activist Adam Eidinger, Harris told Eidinger that he did not “think [D.C.] ought to be a state because they make irresponsible decisions like legalizing marijuana when the African-American unemployment rate is 40 percent and the African-American graduation rate from high school is 12 percent.”
Harris might want to brush up on his facts. The actual unemployment rate for African Americans in Washington, D.C. is 13.6 percent. The high school graduation rate for African American students in Washington, D.C. is 59.7 percent. (Think Progress)