House Republicans Wrestling Democratic Representation From Districts and Territories

01/05/2011 05:23 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

I am appalled that the House Republican leadership is stripping nearly 5 million people of their democratic representation in the 112th Congress. Under the new House rules, residents living in Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa and Northern Marianas, will no longer have a vote on the House Floor in the Committee of the Whole.

As Chairman of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, I am particularly aggrieved at the disservice Republicans are doing to these territories, many of which provide some of the highest numbers, per-capita, of America's volunteer armed servicemen and women. This Republican rule is hardly motivation for these territories to continue contributing to our country.

Irrespective of what House Speaker Boehner might say, this has nothing to do with constitutionality -- since the courts supported previous Democratic House rules which allowed delegates voting rights -- and everything to do with Republicans wresting rights and silencing voices.

Rep. Michael Honda (CA-15) is vice-chair of the Democratic Party and chairman of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus.