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John Oliver discusses Washington, D.C., statehood on Last Week Tonight

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HBO

John Oliver already took on the rights of United States territories earlier this year, but his latest look at an underrepresented area brought him to the country’s capital on Sunday’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver.

Oliver pointed to the years of problems Washington, D.C., has faced without official status as a state. Among the problems plaguing the nation’s capital in the last few decades have been its lack of voting rights in presidential elections until 1964, Congress’ general control over the District of Columbia, and more troubling signs of its lack of individual power. 

But if the history lesson is too much for you, viewers can skip to the end of Oliver’s discussion for a musical take on the point of Oliver’s segment. Singing alongside a group of children, Oliver puts a new spin on the classic 50 states song, whether you’ve heard it from Lamb Chop or the Animaniacs, that finds plenty of space to include Washington, D.C. Just don’t tell Floridians about what finding that space means for their state.

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