When the presidential limo drives down Pennsylvania Avenue on Inauguration Day, its license plate will bear the motto, "Taxation Without Representation," in a nod to the District of Columbia's lack of voting representation in Congress.
Last week the District Council unanimously approved a resolution that President Barack Obama's limousine fleet should use the plates. DC Councilwoman Mary Cheh and Council Chairman Phil Mendelson met with White House Director of Intergovernmental Affairs David Agnew Friday to discuss the resolution.
“On January 21, President Barack Obama will be inaugurated for his second term. Following the ceremony, he will lead a parade down Pennsylvania Avenue with his motorcade. This parade will be watched by millions of Americans and people around the world on television and the Internet. Today, I received a call from The White House confirming that when that happens, the phrase 'Taxation Without Representation,' D.C.’s official motto, will be displayed on all of the motorcade’s license plates," Councilwoman Mary Cheh said in a press release.
Tuesday, the White House agreed to the District's request and, according to a press release from Mayor Vincent Gray's office, the plates will remain on the presidential vehicles throughout the remainder of his term. President Bill Clinton was the first president to use the taxation plates, which were introduced during his second term.
“I appreciate the President agreeing to bring attention to this important issue during the inauguration festivities,” Gray said in a press release.
In a statement, the White House said that Obama sees how "patently unfair" it is for District residents to pay federal taxes, but have no voting representation in Congress where that money is budgeted and spent.
According got the White House statement, affixing the license plates to the presidential limousine “demonstrates the President’s commitment to the principle of full representation for the people of the District of Columbia and his willingness to fight for voting rights, Home Rule and budget autonomy for the District.”