You might have thought congressional Republicans couldn’t get more contemptuous, or contemptible, in their disregard for the rights of people who make their home in the nation’s capital. But their latest gambit — using the scandal surrounding D.C. Council member Jack Evans as a reason the District shouldn’t become a state — represents a breathtaking new low in gall and hypocrisy.
During the Sept. 19 hearing on a bill that would make D.C. the 51st state, Republicans on the House Committee on Oversight and Reform exercised a rarely used authority to call additional witnesses at a separate day of hearings. They wanted Evans and officials of Metro, where Evans served as chairman until revelations about his misconduct forced his resignation, to testify. Evans and Metro officials refused to show up for the second hearing, and ranking Republican Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio argued the committee cannot proceed with the statehood bill until it “fully understands and assesses the nature and extent of D.C. Councilmember Evans’ misconduct.”