During the budget debate, President Obama and Congressional Democrats again sold out the 600,000 mainly African-American and Democratic voting citizens of Washington, DC. They allowed the Republicans to add to the budget deal a rider that would prevent the District from using its own tax revenue to have Medicaid pay for abortion. Democrats used the people as a cheap bargaining chip, thrown away because they are still second class citizens with no representation in Congress.

This betrayal is so utterly distasteful both because it was so obvious that Republican would do this once they took back Congress, and because it could have been so easily prevented. If, last year, Democrats had used their majorities to grant DC statehood this wouldn’t have happened. Not only would giving the residents of the city their rightful Congressional voice have made it much more difficult for Republicans and Democrats in Congress to use the district as a political pawn, but as a state it would be legally protected from the heavy-handed interference in its local affairs.

Democrats could have not only protected the mainly Democratic-voting African-Americans of DC from these big government Republican actions by granting them statehood, but also helped themselves by gaining two Senate seats and one House seat. The fact that President Obama and the Democratic leadership instead first ignored these supporters and than sold them out is inexcusable.

Where is a spontaneous, live television outburst from Kayne West when you need it?