Many journalists and political commentators have been pessimistic about the possibility of statehood for the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.
But in a recent CNN interview, Manchin himself provided evidence for why this thinking is all wrong.
In the interview, Manchin reaffirmed his opposition to eliminating the legislative filibuster, but in response to a separate question about D.C. and Puerto Rico statehood, said that, "I don't know enough about that yet.
In fact, there is a solid legal, historic, and moral case that the legislative filibuster can remain but that it shouldn't be applied to statehood.
Constitutionally, the admission of a new state is not actually a legislative matter, so the legislative filibuster shouldn't apply.
It is possible and reasonable both to keep the legislative filibuster and to allow statehood to proceed with a simple majority vote.
Democrats can grant full representation to the 3.9 million people living in D.C. and Puerto Rico — if they want to. »