You can fight, but you can't vote
By Nelson F. Rimensnyder
Six years ago, my son, James Rimensnyder, then a West Point cadet and a newly registered voter, testified before the D.C. Republican Committee on voting representation in Congress for D. C. residents. The committee was considering a plank in its local platform on the issue.
James, born in the District and a product of its public schools, urged the committee to continue the Republican Party’s longstanding support for D.C. voting rights. He reminded committee members that D.C. voting rights advocate President Dwight D. Eisenhower argued forcefully to Congress that no resident of the nation’s capital should be sent into combat by a Congress in which they are not represented by voting members. At West Point, James wrote his senior thesis on the subject of D.C. voting rights.
In 2006, Lt. Rimensnyder was deployed as an armored tank officer for a 15-month tour in Anbar province, then an area of intense combat. In 2008, James, now a captain, was deployed to Iraq for a second tour.
Why can’t the Republican leadership in Congress support Capt. Rimensnyder’s simple request that he be permitted to elect a voting member of Congress? Why can’t they provide him with the ability to petition his representative on issues of war, peace, taxation and all other matters that affect his country, his family and his very life and limb — like every citizen of the 50 states?
Republicans should uphold their party’s historic advocacy of D.C. voting rights and allow a full debate and vote on a clean bill.
The writer is a member of the D.C. Republican committee.
Posted by: gthompson2 | October 29, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse
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