Maybe I’m missing something, but I don’t see why this is even an issue. If Washington DC and Puerto Rico want statehood, I think they should have it. For that matter, if any of the US possessions want statehood and they meet the requirements, they should get it. We started out as 13 states, and we expanded to 50. If we could add 37 states over the last two hundred years, why not keep doing it?
They’re as American as the rest of us. They pay taxes, vote, and have to abide by US laws. American Samoa has the highest voting rate of any state/territory/possession. Are we afraid they’ll make the rest of the slackers in the US look bad? Are we afraid that tying the knot with Puerto Rico will make the magic fade? Do we hate Guam, the Virgin Islands, and the Mariana Islands so much? When we refuse to grant statehood, people there are often victims of human trafficking and other horrible slavelike crimes. Personally, I think refusing statehood for PR has more than a hint of racism behind it. And I heard John Kasich say that nobody wants to make DC a state because it’s heavily Democratic.
I’d like to see the day when we’re fair about who lives here and the rights they have instead of who can exert their will over others. Alaska and Hawaii came on board at about the same time. Let’s do the same for PR and DC.