Second County Joins California Secession Movement

They need to secede from whatever font they're using for the X'sFlag of JeffersonSiskiyou County on the northern edge of California now has a brother in neighbor Modoc County (population, 9,300) looking to escape the rule of Sacramento. The county’s board of supervisors has voted 4-0 to in favor of seceding from the state of California and creating the state of Jefferson.

The Record Searchlight of Redding, Calif., reports:

Mark Baird, a spokesperson for the Jefferson Declaration Committee, said the group hopes to have a dozen counties commit their support before asking California legislators to allow the formation of the new state.

“California is essentially ungovernable in its present size,” Baird said. “We lack the representation to address the problems that affect the North State.”

“We’re looking for 12 counties, though we can certainly do it with less,” he said.

If all goes according to plan, Baird said the new state’s economy could be 15 percent larger than that of New Mexico.

Still, most of the more populated counties in Northern California have yet to lend their support, though a number are considering it, including Shasta County and Redding, the most populous city north of Sacramento.

Steven Greenhut explored the lengthy history of secession efforts in rural northern California and southern Oregon recently following Siskiyou County’s vote, noting the citizenry’s frustration with the oppressive (and oblivious) regulatory machinations of Sacramento and Salem. Modoc County also has a significant amount of federally managed land and national parks, no doubt increasing the feeling of distant rule, and has one of the most conservative voting records in the state.

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  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    If this scheme works, we'll move up there.

  • SForza||

    We might need to wait 8 years until the kids are out of the house, but we'd love to move there. California without the progtards.

  • Brandon||

    Up there, it's pretty much Oregon without the progtards.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Quitters never win.

  • ||

    What about rehab? Rehab is for quitters.

  • UnCivilServant||

    Hrmm... It might just be rainy enough for me. Assuming they follow through on their intent to leave the left coast insanity behind.

  • ||

    Look at Washington and Oregon.

    I see no evidence that being north and rural has anything to do with leaving left coast insanity behind.

  • Ken Shultz||

    The whole point of progressivism is using the power of government to impose themselves on the unwilling; there's no way Sacramento will let them escape.

  • Pelosi's Accommodator||

    This is why they want federal regulation on things like fracing or GMO's: Somebody in a state 1000 miles away might have regulations they don't like.

  • PapayaSF||

    Sacramento is only part of: every national Democrat is pooping their pants thinking of new states with Republican senators. They will not let this happen.

  • CE||

    Democrats would rather disenfranchise millions of Republican voters than to let California apportion its Electoral College votes by Congressional district.

  • John||

    It is a shame that the Constitution doesn't allow this to occur more easily. The central valley of California, the plains of eastern Colorado, the rural areas of states like Maryland and Illinois are totally being oppressed and harmed by big monied urban interests. If you live in the Central Valley of CA you basically have no say in how your state government works and that government is totally beholden to fanatical greens and various other groups that are out to flat out destroy your economy. Why shouldn't they be able to leave?

  • sarcasmic||

    Why shouldn't they be able to leave?

    Because fifty is a nice looking number. Can't have like fifty-seven states or something odd like that.

  • John||

    The Constitution makes it hard. You have to get Congress and the state to agree to it. It really is a Constitutional problem.

    But beyond that, everyone would have to get new flags. Maybe they should sell it as a stimulus.

  • sarcasmic||

    Hey Beavis. He said "makes it hard." Heheheheheheheheh

  • Ken Shultz||

    Of course, they threw that out the window--at least once that I can think of and probably twice...

    There wasn't anything constitutional about the way West Virginia was created. How could they claim, out of one side of their mouths, that Virginia was out of the union and therefore not subject to the constitution, and, out of the other side of their mouths, claim that Virginia's secession was entirely bogus?

    The other instance I'm thinking of is (a little weaker case, no doubt)in what is now southern Nevada--and used to be Arizona.

    My understanding is that the area around where Las Vegas is now used to be part of Arizona. ...but Arizona sided with the South during the war and Nevada sided with the North, so they took a big chunk of Arizona and gave it to Nevada. Nevada was brought into the union quickly because of the Comstock lode, etc....

    So, no matter what you may have heard, that's why UNLV's teams are called the Rebels, and that's why their mascot is a Confederate soldier...and that's why so many companies around Las Vegas are called Dixie this or Dixie that.

  • John||

    The answer to that is that Virginia left the union and the western part of it voted to stay. Congress was free to admit West Virginia as a state if it chose to. As for Virginia, they left the Union. Hard to see how their objection to West Virginia leaving had any legal effect.

  • Live Free or Diet||

    But then Virginia was required to ratify the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments. If it left the Union, Virginia wasn't a State in the Union. How could it ratify constitutional amendments?

  • John||

    Because it was forcibly returned.

  • Ken Shultz||

    That's not exactly how it happened.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H.....a#Legality

    The people of West Virginia decided to leave, and the federal government decided to recognize a new state.

    When Virginia went to the Supreme Court, the court told them to go fuck a duck.

    What I'm saying is that if that's the criteria we're going by for the State of Jefferson, then the State of Jefferson has a chance. But who here thinks they're going to go with that kind of precedent?

    Like with everything else in the Constitution, the government does whatever the hell it wants--and leaves academics and lawyers to figure out why that's okay later.

  • Brandon||

    Penaltax.

  • Mickey Rat||

    "...if that's the criteria we're going by for the State of Jefferson, then the State of Jefferson has a chance."

    Theoretically, maybe. Practically, the federal government had political reasons to support the creation of West Virginia. Reasons including Virginia being in violent conflict with the federal government. I don't see Jefferson being created out of that kind of circumstance.

  • Calidissident||

    I think the creation of West Virginia was constitutional, because Virginia was no longer a part of the Union, even if the feds claimed otherwise (I agree it was hypocritical obviously)

  • Ken Shultz||

    I think the constitution was bent to allow for the creation of West Virginia, just like it was bent to allow for the creation of the individual mandate.

    There wasn't much in the way of Democrat resistance in Congress during the war; the Supreme Court was stuffed with post-Dred Scott Republicans; and nobody was going to stand in the way of something people in the North thought might help in the war effort.

    Imagine Pelosi campaigning against the Patriot Act for being against the Constitution during the worst of the WoT. She didn't do that--and she was in the party opposite the president! Who's gonna stick up for the rights of Virginia in that situation?

    I think the principles of the Constitution are important because they supposedly tie the hands of the people in power, but the people in power hate having their hands tied. Lincoln sure as hell wasn't about to let the Constitution get in the way of fighting the war.

  • tarran||

    Ken, as a favor, can you stop publishing your email address with your handle?

    Reason.com is adding a script to email addresses that breaks reasonable.

  • Smilin' Joe Fission||

    ^^This, it totally fucks up reasonable

  • Ken Shultz||

    Jeez! It's been that way for nine years!

  • Calidissident||

    Again, I don't think it was bent at all; the feds were just hypocrites. Virginia was not a US state in 1863. It had left the Union, regardless of what Lincoln said

  • AlexInCT||

    Who can you steal wealth from to buy votes and keep yourself in the milk & honey if the people you were fleecing had a vehicle to prevent you from doing just that, huh?

  • Brett L||

    I'm uncertain that this is Constitutional. The only reference we have is West By-God Viriginia (and Texas being allowed by treaty [which may or may not be valid after the Civil War] to split into 3 states). Secession, even uncontested, from a state while remaining part of the Union may be just as Unconstitutional depending on how you squint at the Constitution.

  • Hugh Akston||

    There's nothing in the Constitution that specifically prohibits division of states, and there is a clear Constitutional protocol for admitting new states to the Union.

  • John||

    To split you would have to get your own state to agree to let you go, then get Congress to agree to let you in. That is a pretty high bar.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Sure it will probably never happen, but there's nothing inherently unConstitutional about it.

  • John||

    I didn't say it was unconstitutional. i said the constitution makes it harder to do than it should.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I wasn't even talking to you, John. I was originally responding to Brett's claim that this is unconstitutional.

  • Doctor Whom||

    Article IV, § 3: "New States may be admitted by the Congress into this Union; but no new State shall be formed or erected within the Jurisdiction of any other State; nor any State be formed by the Junction of two or more States, or Parts of States, without the Consent of the Legislatures of the States concerned as well as of the Congress." No squinting required.

  • Brett L||

    Ah. I was talking out my ass and got tied up on WVa being created in the Civil War. Stop othering me with your primary source!

  • Doctor Whom||

    Why shouldn't they be able to leave?

    Because the net state-tax producers have a moral obligation to the net state-tax consumers. No, you may not ask why; they just do, mmkay? That's how it's been explained to me.

  • NoVAHockey||

    unless Northern VA were to split off from the rest of the state. then it would be okay. b/c it would be a blue state.

  • John||

    That will be true right up until VA becomes a blue state. Then the red parts will be prohibited from leaving and getting their old state back.

    As it is, the red parts can enjoy living in the new Southern Maryland that your NOVA compatriots are busy creating. Say good bye to your gun rights and having a fiscally solvent government.

  • NoVAHockey||

    sigh. it's true.

  • John||

    I am constantly amazed at the number of fairly conservative people I know who live in NOVA who think the VA Democratic Party is different than the national one. That they won't bankrupt the state and will respect gun rights. What a bunch of rubes.

    BTW, I started working on backward c-cuts this morning. I am on my way to the joys of skating backwards.

  • NoVAHockey||

    we used to keep the crazy in Alexandria. somehow the containment failed.

    that said, i was at the NRA range on Friday morning, and the staff said they've never been so busy. pretty good mix of old, young, new and experiencd. including one 90year old lady who couldn't miss with her sig. like dead center at 20 yards. consistently.

    good stuff on the c-cuts.

  • datcv||

    Mark Warner did not really implement any traditional progressive policies in Virginia while he was governor, but that is probably because the GOP still holds the GA. Virginia's Democrats will be different than national democrats right up until the point where they gain control of the whole state.

  • ||

    Either your brains or your signature is going on this social contract...

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    Honestly, a lot of the western states need to be broken up into smaller ones at this point anyway. Most of the current state borders of the American west were established in an era where the distance of population centers required a large area to encompass in order to apply for statehood. That doesn't really make sense anymore in a nation where population centers now run in the hundreds of thousands and even millions.

  • VicRattlehead||

    Dont forget just about all of new york

  • CE||

    At least the Central Valley will get bullet trains before the big cities do!

  • ||

    Maryland does not need to be split up.

    Now Eastern Washington. That needs to be split off from Seattle and Olympia.

  • Smilin' Joe Fission||

    Ken, get your email address out of your username. It is killing my reasonable.

  • Raston Bot||

    A comment makes the point that those sparse, northern counties are net drains on the state treasury. But they still celebrate that Sacramento will never let them secede.

    That's kind of how I want Fairfax, Arlington, and Alexandria to secede from Virginia and join Maryland even though the commonwealth depends on their (federally-employed) high income earners.

  • UnCivilServant||

    People say upstate is dependant on downstate taxes. The reason is because we've also been subjected to downstate policies which disincentivse or ban what works well economically upstate. A clean break would allow better policies to be implemented for the so called drain regions to allow them to flourish.

  • Doctor Whom||

    Maryland wouldn't take them. To Marylanders, even people in Fairfax and Arlington (maybe not Alexandria) are wild-eyed loonytarians. Also, anything that would further diminish Baltimore's political strength would be anathema.

  • ChrisO||

    A lot of the rest of Maryland would love to lose Montgomery and Prince George's County, too. You could lump Montgomery, PG, Arlington, Alexandria and Fairfax into a new state called Fedland. Heck, include DC in that agglomeration and you get rid of the DC statehood issue. The surrounding states could erect a giant wall around it to keep the parasites contained.

  • Doctor Whom||

    A lot of the rest of Maryland would love to lose Montgomery County, except on tax day. Even parasites can have parasites, and when Marylanders demand wealth redistribution, they aren't exactly talking about redistributing wealth from Baltimore City.

  • ChrisO||

    That same argument applies to a lot of these secession movements, although you're certainly correct about Baltimore sponging off of Montgomery County.

    Likewise, I suspect many Bethesda and Rockville residents would be more than happy to lose the rest of Maryland if they could. Twenty years ago, you'd never think that any alliance of the Maryland and Virginia suburbs could work, but they're culturally a lot more alike now.

  • Rhywun||

    Makes me wonder why counties don't get more autonomy - maybe the FF never foresaw the need/want for it. Hell, the only county-specific laws I can think of all revolve around alcohol.

  • ChrisO||

    The states were (and sort of still are) sovereigns in their own right. The founding fathers didn't believe in tinkering with that sovereignty any more than necessary.

  • Rhywun||

    Makes sense.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    I certainly hope the nascent state of Jefferson continues to press the issue, in the public, the legislature, and the courts. This would be one case I would happily work on for free.

    Then again, secession is racist and stuff. Hmmm, decisions, decisions.

  • waffles||

    I'd move to Jefferson. I've lived in Sacramento. I know the unending horror of a city built on bureaucratic self gratification. Jefferson would be the California I love.

  • VicRattlehead||

    New York should follow suit and sever off the penis like appendage that is the apparatus of the proglotards, and high chancellor bloomberg... on second thought we could let NYC have Albany and they could call themselves something flashy like the State of Riyadh or New Leningrad to show the true face of its inhabitants. Us in the western part of the state would then be free to vote and have our voices heard for once instead of drown in the cacophony of demonic voices emanating from Albany. The high Tyrant Cuomo and his ilk can shove off the mortal coil any time and the world will be all the better

  • db||

    They need to add Humboldt County.

  • datcv||

    The new state of Jefferson would be too high to pass laws.

  • CE||

    Even better.

  • db||

    A major problem with secession of the pot-growing counties in California is that now that weed's getting legal there, the tax revenue is too sweet for the lower state to ever give up. The second issue is that the new state wouldn't be able to export its main cash crop south without running afoul of the Feds.

    A third consideration would be that it's likely (if it ever got this far) that the U.S. Congress would place a "no weed" condition on Jefferson's entry to the Union. It would be like pre Civil War posturing over slavery, but it would be "Weed States" and "FYTW States" instead.

  • ||

    I imagine California will legalize in a year or two.

    Probably making the point mute.

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    The downside to making this sort of thing easier is that it allows the FedGov to break up states - imaging Federal funded and Congressionally encouraged succession movements to break up states the Feds want broken up. The individual states have little enough power as it is w/o the Feds threatening to stir up secession movements.

  • ||

    One need only look at the east coast and all the small states there to understand the need to split up the west coast into more states.

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