Calexit – The Move For California to Secede from the Union

Let us face it, California is so different than the rest of the United States. California is so Progressive and Democratic-leaning that the two candidates for the US Senate were both Democrats. The surprise election result of President-Neglect, Donald Trump, was a true revulsion to the over 5.4 million voters. In fact, the voting for Democrats was so overwhelming that California single-handedly turned the popular vote in favor of Hilary Clinton.(5,488,261 to 2,969,532).

A giant paper bust of Donald Trump is burnered during a Anti-Donald Trump protest in front of City Hall on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016 in Los Angeles. Donald Trump has been elected as the next president of the United States. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)

A giant paper bust of Donald Trump is burnered during a Anti-Donald Trump protest in front of City Hall on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016 in Los Angeles. Donald Trump has been elected as the next president of the United States. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)

Some of the Silicon Valley elites, like Uber investor and Hyperloop One co-founder Shervin Pishevar, have been vocal about California seceding from the Union, according to Fusion.net.

Now that California has legalized marijuana, it is expected the new tax revenue for the state should be astronomical. This would make California much less dependent on any Federal Aid at any time in the modern Era. It would be an ideal time to leave.


Is California Big Enough to Support Itself As a Country?

California is 250 miles by 770 miles long (163,696 sq mile or 423,970 km2). It would be the sixth largest country in Europe or 60th in the world. California’s population is 39,144,818. That compromises about 1/8 of the US population. It would be the 34th most populated country in the world. Plus, California has 4 of the top 11 largest cities in the USA: Los Angeles, San Diego, San Jose and San Francisco.

California has a multiple variety of landscapes: oceans, mountains, deserts, valleys, ski slopes, beaches and Hollywood. And it is home to some of the best winegrowers in the world.

The Economy of California

Most importantly, California is the 6th world’s largest economy. It compromises about 14% of the United States economy. California’s economy is dependent on trade and international related commerce accounts for about one-quarter of the state’s economy. In 2008, California exported $144 billion worth of goods.[149] Computers and electronic products are California’s top export, accounting for 42 percent of all the state’s exports in 2008.[149]

Agriculture – Although only 1.5% of the state’s economy,[14] California’s agriculture industry has the highest output of any United States state. It is a cold hard fact that the United States would suffer tremendously economically, if California were to say adios to Trumpland.

How Could California Secede From the Union – The Legal Issues

The following two paragraphs are from Heavy magazine:

The Supreme Court case Texas v. White (1869) set the ground rules for how a state could leave the Union after the Civil War. In that case, the Texas Reconstruction government argued that the state’s Confederate government illegally sold U.S. bonds during the war. However, the Court ruled that Texas never officially left the Union because states cannot do so unilaterally. In other words, the California state government couldn’t just one day decide to secede from the union and expect the U.S. government to accept that.

Here’s the specific part of Texas v. White relevant to this case:

When, therefore, Texas became one of the United States, she entered into an indissoluble relation. All the obligations of perpetual union, and all the guaranties of republican government in the Union, attached at once to the State. The act which consummated her admission into the Union was something more than a compact; it was the incorporation of a new member into the political body. And it was final. The union between Texas and the other States was as complete, as perpetual, and as indissoluble as the union between the original States. There was no place for reconsideration or revocation, except through revolution or through consent of the States.

The first step to California (or any state for that matter) seceding from the Union is likely a ballot measure for voters. There is already a group called Yes California pushing for a referendum on Californian independence, noting that the state would be the sixth-largest economy in the world if it were its own country.

Getting the referendum on the ballot and winning in an election might be the easiest part of this procedure. As Yes California notes, there are two possible next steps. First, a member of California’s congressional delegation could propose an Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to allow California to leave. The Amendment needs to pass two-thirds of the House and senate and then be approved by at least 38 of 50 states.

A second possible path after a referendum would be California calling for a states convention, where two-thirds of the delegates from 50 states approve it. If it passes, it would still need to be ratified by 38 of the 50 state legislatures.

A group called “Yes California” has even gone as far as to propose a 2019 ballot referendum to sever ties between the Golden State and the federal government and planned to hold an event in the state’s capitol on Wednesday.

The Reality of Actual Leaving The United States

Every state has, at times, thought about leaving the Union, especially the hot-headed Confederate states, but the reality of going through the process of actually seceding, as detailed above, is nearly impossible. Then, there are the complex logistics of trying to unwind the “Federal versus State” issues. Especially when it comes to roadways, property, health (Medicare/MediCal), National parks. Then, it would have to figure out other issues:

  • Print money (bills and coins)
  • Declare war
  • Establish an army and navy
  • Enter into treaties with foreign governments
  • Regulate commerce between states and international trade
  • Establish post offices and issue postage
  • Make laws necessary to enforce the Constitution

The possibility that California could be its own sovereign country is truly a pipe dream. If it were to happen, the country of California would be much more like one of the European nations than anything from the Midwest. It would be truly incredible, mind-blowing, even. I can’t wait to hear the new National Anthem.


5 Responses to “Calexit – The Move For California to Secede from the Union”

  1. 1 Neal FItzpatrick
    November 11, 2016 at 2:54 pm

    …playing the middle again I see…

  2. 3 nick
    November 11, 2016 at 5:40 pm

    I think there’s a lot of possibilities for this. I’m pretty sure most of the Midwest would be happy to California leave the Union given the cultural differences. But there are two things to consider in this thought experiment. 1) Other western states may wish to join, which could make this a larger country and loss to the Union. 2) This could also be a bargaining chip to make changes to the electoral process. That’s one of the ways backers in Silicon Valley are taking it.

    Either way, it’s interesting times we’re living in.

    • November 13, 2016 at 4:57 am

      Yes, I could see Oregon and Washington wanting to join. However, I think the possibilities of seceding are very slim.

      • 5 nick
        November 14, 2016 at 8:58 pm

        I can see your point of view. I’d like very much for them to join, as I see this as an expression of democracy. Growing up on the west coast I saw time and again in the 1980s and 1990s the frustration of seeing a ruling on who was president, before our polls closed. I think we need to fix the election process.

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