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The (Failed) California Breakup

By Tyler Bauer

In the wake of Brexit, a new potential exit arose in the United States: Calexit. Calexit was originally a plan made by Californians to secede from the United States, but this was replaced by a less-radical Calexit plan. The new Calexit plan is a plan that proposed dividing the existing state of California into three separate states. The new states would be “Northern California,” consisting of Sacramento, Placer, Yolo, El Dorado and 36 other counties; “Southern California,” stretching from Fresno to Mexico; and “California,” stretching from Los Angeles County to San Benito County. Supporters of Calexit believe that dividing the state into three new states would allow for better representation of each successor state’s constituents. Opponents of the three state solution argue that it would give an unfair advantage to Republican politicians nationwide by breaking up one of the Democratic Party’s bluest states.

Yesterday afternoon, a California Supreme Court blocked this measure from appearing on this November’s ballet. The California Supreme Court did not provide too much reasoning for its decision to block this measure. At the time, the California Supreme Court only said that “significant questions have been raised about [Calexit’s] validity.” Coincidentally, these “significant questions” weren’t included in any articles I found.

I don’t know whether Calexit would have succeeded on Election Day in November. I’d like to think it would (because shrinking the size of government is always good), but there’s really no way of knowing. Quite frankly, it doesn’t matter, because there’s a much larger issue at hand – a conflict of interest.

I’m not at all surprised that a California Supreme Court moved to block this measure. The powers that be in California would not benefit in any way from a successful Calexit. Everyone currently in power on the state level would stand to lose a significant amount of power if Calexit became reality. The governor, the state legislators, and the courts – including the Supreme Court that blocked this measure – would all become much weaker.

I think the conflict of interest in this case is clear. We can’t expect the California Supreme Court to allow the citizens to decide whether to reduce the California Supreme Court’s power. They’d be stupid to risk giving up their immense power. Whether you support the Calexit measure or not, I think we can all agree that we cannot let the government prevent us from exercising our right to change the government as we see fit. If we allow this to happen, we are no longer free.

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