Society

Despite Unpopularity Amongst Citizens, California Secession Movements Continue

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Last September, two counties in California voted to begin the process of withdrawing from the State of California to form a 51st state: Jefferson.

A recent Field Poll survey found that only 25 percent of those surveyed support the idea of separating from California, according to Red Bluff Daily News. Still, even those that conducted the poll said that the sample—1002 registered voters in Northern California—is so small when compared to California’s total population that it doesn’t paint a realistic picture of the attitude of those who don’t live in the areas looking to secede.

A letter to the editor of the Colusa Sun-Herald, however, takes issue not with the poll sampling, but the way the poll question was phrased. Jim Reed writes that because Jefferson advocates use the word secession (or even the phrase “withdraw from the state”) conjures up “memories of the Civil War and slavery.” Instead he suggests that posing the question, “Do you favor dividing California into smaller and more easily managed separate States” would shift the poll numbers in separatists’ favor.

Mr. Reed may be on to something actually. Outside of the rural north, there is another movement in place this one started by “noted investor Tim Draper” according to TechCrunch.com. Draper is not only favor of the state of Jefferson, but seems to be in favor of the complete dissolution of Calfornia into six separate states. He is working towards getting enough signatures for a ballot proposition that would break “California into six entities: Silicon Valley, West California, Jefferson, South California, Central California and North California.”

Of course, none of these movements either in Northern California or Silicon Valley actually have anything to say about the logistical nightmare of breaking up the most populous state and largest state-wide economy in the U.S. Even the more limited Jefferson initiative does not address how they would function since the area takes in about $20 million more from Sacramento than it pays in taxes. Still the Jeffersonians can’t see much further than “a more favorable regulatory environment” choosing to ignore all the obstacles (from their fellow citizens to simple common sense) in their way.