What do Massachusetts, Montana, Mississippi and the other 47 states have that Washington, D.C., lacks?
Car dealerships, according to one member of Congress.
That's one reason the District of Columbia shouldn't become the 51st state, Rep. Jody Hice, R-Ga., argued last week.
"D.C. would be the only state, the only state, without an airport, without a car dealership, without a capital city, without a landfill," Hice said during a House Committee on Oversight and Reform hearing.
Unsurprisingly, the Founding Fathers were silent on the issue of automotive retail as it relates to statehood.
Regardless, Washington does have car dealerships, Rep. Gerald Connolly, D-Va., said during the hearing. Responded Hice: "If there's a car dealership in D.C., I apologize for being wrong. I have no idea where it is."
Tesla Inc. has had a showroom a little more than a mile from the U.S. Capitol since 2011. In addition, the district has a number of used-vehicle stores.
But had Hice limited his comment to franchised new-vehicle dealerships, he would have been correct. There are none within the 68.3-square-mile capital city.
A spokesman for the Washington Area New Automobile Dealers Association confirmed that to be true, saying the last one was a Volkswagen store in the Tenleytown neighborhood that closed in 2014.