© 2004-2005 | Website of the Committee to Explore California Secession | Protecting California values

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Comments from readers

New California Republic posts a select number of responses both pro and con. If you would like to contribute a longer, thoughtful essay favoring one view or another, please submit it to Paste your comments in the body of the email. No attachments please. Thank you for visiting New California Republic.

Date posted
California has deeply different cultural values to the rest of the US. If the federal system could be down graded primarily to commerce (such as the European Union) - it would make sense to remain. If it serves force religious and socal dogma that we don't support, and to take our tax dollars in doing so - I don't see why it makes sense to remain.
--Simon (San Jose, CA)
I favor California secession but I know it will never happen. The federal government won't let California secede. California is simply too important to the union. Consider all the military bases, the industry, high-tech and research (including the Livermore National Labs), the productive farmlands of the central valley, the Pacific coastline, the oil reserves of the Santa Barbara channel, etc. No way would the government allow that to be taken from the U.S. Also, the majority of California citizens would not support it. It's a pipe dream.
--Amanda (Santa Barbara, CA)
Erection ring for men!
Please see my letter published in The Union, Grass Valley, CA. I would prefer an officialy sanctioned state study called for by initiative. I heard Vermont is already considering this. If such an initiative were on the ballot this would create nationwide if not world wide discussion & might move congress & Bush administration to see that a fraud proof national paper trail be set so that situations like Ohio & Florida don't happen again.
--William (Nevada City, CA)
I have been proposing this for at least twenty years. I am a native of the Bay Area and feel that we do not "fit" with the rest of the US. I have always felt more in tune with Mexico, South America and the Pacific Rim than with Idaho.
--Frank (Oakland, CA)
After devoting the entirety of my year to campaigning for pro-democratic groups, and witnessing another stolen election, I'm more than ready to commit my energy to a real progressive solution!
--Michelle (Santa Barbara, CA)
Issue of whether states may secede from the union was decided in 1865, or did you forget?
--James (Oakland, CA)
Another alternative would be to join Canada as an adjunct province. California would double Canada's population in one swoop - and ties us in to the pre-exisiting national health care system there. Worth considering too.

--Dave (San Francisco, CA)
I had no idea such an organization existed until trying a Google search on 1-17-05. I wrote a letter to the Grass Valley/Nevada City Union newspaper which was published on 1-8-05 suggesting secession. The web address is . Some negative replies to my letter were published on 1-15-05.
--William (Nevada City, CA)
Actually worth considering. Is there a case before the supreme court about some counties in West Virginia trying to secede back to Virginia? I may be ignorant to this but was there any judicial precendent(s) in secession after the civil war?
--Bobby (Memphis, TN)
(NOTE: Not sure, but worth checking out.)
I am a college student and i would love to set up a booth or area on campus to inform others about the movement. If you have made pamphlets or other publications i can download to print and pass out i would love to know.
--Michael (San Diego, CA)
(NOTE: Thanks for your inquiry, Michael. Not at this time, but hopefully soon.)
I believe that a more probable scenario would be for a state ballot calling for the state government to petition the other 49 states for a constitutional covention to rewrite the Constitution allowing us and the other states more freedom and autonomy. We would end up more along the lines of a Federation similar to the Russian model.
--Frank (Los Angeles, CA)
The southern States seceeded for the same kind of reasons: tax and tarrif revenue going north to fund public works projects like canals and railroads. The Feds responded with a massive armed invasion, brutal destruction and a military/political occupation that lasted for decades. I'd like to see your efforts succeed because competition from a New California may convince Americans that D.C. is out of control. Best of luck but just in case, you may want to reform your gun control laws a bit.
--Richard (Shannock, RI)
Contrary to the thinking of this movement's founder, California doesn't need to secede, California needs to break up! That's right. Californians lack representation at the federal level compared to other states. At 634,327 persons per electoral votes, Californians suffer the worst Electoral Vote per Person ratio of state citizens in the nation (e.g., Wyomingans ratio is 174,000 per EV).
How did this happen? In 1913, Congress ended Popular Representation in the House by affixing House membership permanently at 435. Fundamentally, this action changed the design of the US government, essentially creating a single senate legislature one-third of whose membership stands for election every two years. So is secession the solution? No. Simply, California should break-up into five new states admitted to the Union. Most states would be powerhouses ranking high in both population and land area. Moreover, likeminded persons would be citizens of these various new states -- each free to persue their own policies congruent to the wishes of their new citizens.
Here are the proposed states:
West California aka "the Left Coast"
[capital: San Jose; population: 7,765,450]
(Monterey, San Benito, Humboldt, Lake, Marin, Mendocino, Napa Solano, Sonoma, Alameda, Contra Costa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Cruz Santa Clara)
The Central Valley
[capital: Fresno; population: 5,138,567]
(Butte, Colusa, Glenn, Sacramento, Sutter, Tehama, Yolo, Yuba, Fresno, Kings, Madera, Merced, San Joaquin Stanislaus, Kern, Tulare)
Golden Outback
[capital: Riverside; population: 3,415,127]
(Imperial, Inyo, Riverside, San Bernardino)
Sierra Cascades
[capital: South Lake Tahoe; population: 973,819]
(Alpine, El Dorado, Mono, Nevada Placer, Sierra, Lassen, Modoc, Amador Calaveras, Mariposa, Tuolumne, Del Norte Plumas, Shasta, Siskiyou, Trinity)
Southern California
[capital: Los Angeles; population: 16,578,685]
(Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Ventura)
--Pierre (Thousand Oaks, CA)
Here's what Thoreau had to say about secessionism. I think it applies as well today as it did a century and a half ago: "I have heard some of my townsmen say, 'I should like to have them order me out to help put down an insurrection of the slaves, or to march to Mexico see if I would go'; and yet these very men have each, directly by their allegiance, and so indirectly, at least, by their money, furnished a substitute. "The soldier is applauded who refuses to serve in an unjust war by those who do not refuse to sustain the unjust government which makes the war; is applauded by those whose own act and authority he disregards and sets at naught; as if the state were penitent to that degree that it hired one to scourge it while it sinned, but not to that degree that it left off sinning for a moment. "Those who, while they disapprove of the character and measures of a government, yield to it their allegiance and support are undoubtedly its most conscientious supporters, and so frequently the most serious obstacles to reform. Some are petitioning the State to dissolve the Union, to disregard the requisitions of the President. Why do they not dissolve it themselves the union between themselves and the State and refuse to pay their quota into its treasury?" If you'd like to stop paying your quota into Dubya's treasury, you can find some help at
--Dave (Oakland, CA)
Although I am not convinced of any specific plan for secession, I feel that The United States of America is a failing experiment. When a government exercises control over a population as large as the USA it is inevitable that the governed will be more and more oppressed. Individual states' rights have become more and more eroded as the federal government legislated the powers away from them. Although no government will ever satisfy all of the electorate, those which are in control of a smaller population are more able to resolve conflict among the citizens of the state. Thank you for providing a forum for the discussion of this topic and I look forward to being an active participant.
--Jess (W. Sacramento, CA)
I want to add to my comment of yesterday. I believe that secession could work, but I am against it. I do not belive in separation, in all it's forms. Inorder for the voters to exercise the control they own, some reform is REALLY needed. The system of voting needs help. Some are trying - help them - vote, sign petitions, support the effort. Campaign reform is a big need too. When a cadidate has more to say about how bad the other guy is than their own agenda and platform then something is wrong. I belive in a level playing field during the campaign and I feel that negative campaigning sould not be allowed and should cause instant disqualification of any candidte that does so. Think about it - the reds and blues are not our only choices. Look at the choices inteligently. A vote for a third party is not a wasted vote - it just might be a wake up call!!!
--Gary (Arcata, CA)
You talk of mounting debt & taxes yet not one word about the massive, unfettered invasion of our State by illegal aliens? Where do you think 80% of our problems stem from, a conservative agenda? You are simply sticking your heads into the sand & refusing to admit where the true problem lies. If you truly care about Ca., then stop the politically correct nonsense & admit the truth. Then maybe we'll get somewhere.
--Mike (Los Angeles, CA)
I am probably considered a racist by the latino community. I am very discouraged over the amount of illegal immigraration going on. Now don't get me wrong, I am 100% behind immigrants who follow our laws. What are the plans for dealing with illlegal immigration? Will we put a military presence on the boarder? Will we deport those that are hre illegally? Including their families? I think we should. The word illegal means they have broken the law. Our law. The law of the nation. If California were to sececced and we would remove those here against the law I would be all in favor of that. Also, what about outsourcing and the H1 and L1 visa's? There 1000's of people here from india and other countries on the work visas. Where I work is 95% Hindu. Are we going to revoke these? If we do, wouldn't that cause business to fold? There are so many questions to ask. If you are truely interested, then please reply with answeres to the ones I posed. I would like to ask more. I would support such a movement IF it truely benifitted me and my family.
--Damon (Burbank, CA)
(NOTE: While a comprehensive strategy on immigration is worthy of consideration and will be forthcoming, there is an initial discussion of the subject at
This idea is rediculous, as if it was thought up by disgruntled teenagers. Get real; current demographic trends suggest that as per your idea the state will soon become an extension of uneducated Mexico and all that such would entail. Why not the proponents just move south?I know, I know, call me anti immigrant. Frankly as things are going, the State is going to need the rest of the Union to bail it out for a number of obvious reasons soon enough. Imageine that, a non english speaking welfare "state" of independence. Where's the money for services going to come from? The population will be reduced to a serfdom of peasantry in honor of those we seek to "help", but then you could call it a slave state which the state nearly is already. Speaking of reasons, now I have one more reason to leave this sad state behind.
--Christopher (Hayward, CA)
I think a California secession is an excellent idea. It would be wonderful to get rid of the liberal eco-fascists and other old hippies who did too much drugs in the 60s and now have taken over California. Maybe it could protect the rest of the country from the filth that comes out of Hollywood, and it could keep the Americahaters in California. I think both Americans and Californians would be happy with a secession.
--KJ (Bothell, WA)
There is no rational reason that the USA is one nation. Admittedly, there are emotional reasons, but when anyone considers the great cultural divides in the USA, secession makes sense for most states. You people can ultimately set a good example - especially if Calif becomes a confederation of, say, three or four political sub-divisions.
--Bud (Henderson, NV)
I have read some interesting responses on both sides of this issue, and I am,like a few others, dissapointed by the name calling and hatred. Why are we considering such an action? Because we are unhappy with the way things are. Why are things the way thery are? Blame the elected? Ok Who elected them. The other guys Ok It seems to me the country is "Of the People, By the People, For the People" If it is not that way anymore then I blame the voters. Secession won't help unless the voters take back their power. Get out and vote - too many don't. Get educated and know what you are voting for, the TV will not educate you. Let your elected know what you expect of them. How many have bitched about the elected without even writting to them to voice your opinion? If politians got out of hand - who let them? You want control back, then use your powers to do so, not bitching - contributing! Ya I know it may not be that simple - or is it? Secession may work - but only if the informed vote - and a lot more of them!!
--Gary (Arcata, CA)
Your paranoia knows no bounds. As a supporter of the war on terror, who (pay attention) HAS NO RELIGIOUS AFFILIATION WHATSOEVER - I find the concept of ANY state in this country actually seceeding from the Union flat out disgusting. You disgrace the thousands of Americans who died in the American Civil War to settle the secession question. America is a country in a state of constant flux; always has and always will. Just because you don't like a certain administration and this country's current policies, you feel you can just walk away from America and start your own "independant" California? If I were in the position, I would have you arrested for treason on the slimy spot you stand. If you don't like this country or its current policies, then change them the American way - through your Constitutional rights; lobby, protest, write your congressman, etc. If that doesn't work for you - just leave. Europe would welcome you with open arms. But you have NO right, to take action against the Union and this great country. You may hate the United States with all your tiny mind, but it's still the best country in the history of this planet.
--Jim (Colorado Springs, CO)
Please, please, please move on! Make sure you take all of the movie stars, and the professors at Berkly(sic) with you!
--Michele (Casa Grande, AZ)
I think this is a good idea, it could free the state from the political/corporate blackmail that holds our country back from obtaining any progressive momentum. If this is to be done, we will need a new California Constitution that clearly states boundaries of government and the rights of the people in clear precise language, so that it may never be corrupted. In addition, we would need to fully examine what went wrong with this nation almost from it outset. We need to guard ourselves against the corruption of the monied interests. We need to clearly state that the people will always come before special interests and profit, and furthermore it needs to be made clear that corporations are not people, and do not have constitutional protections. The process of removing a corporations charter needs to be re-established and enforced when any corporation violates the the commonwealth of the people or the sanctity of the environment.
One question - How would California protect itself from the American Empire. Undoubtably any successful secession would be met with either an outright attack, or something more covert like a CIA santioned coup. We have seen a long history of progressive populist governments overthrown because they dared to put their own interests before the strategic and monetary interests of the U.S. We have seen this in South America, Haite, Iran and several other nations that tried to help their own people. it is clear that this nation will not tolerate high ideals nor populist examples of true democracy. The attempted secession of the South, by self proclaimed President Davis was met with war by President Lincoln, and he was almost a liberal. Would the U.S. tolerate losing military bases in California, or would we allow California to be occupied by U.S. - I may be wrong, but I believe that we have military bases in 138 countries - would we be the 139th - how then would we be sovere! ign? I have many other questions - perhaps this is not the forum for that.
--Sean (Long Beach, CA)
I think we should also stop all water from Colorado to California, and all refined petroleum products to California from other states like Texas until Californians open their reserves in the Santa Barbara Channel, Etc. Ask Oxy Petroleum. GO FULL SPEED AHEAD. WE WELCOME YOUR SECESSION!!! TAKE YOUR PERVERTED HOLLYWOOD AND SAN FRANCISCO WITH YOU!!!
signed, The other 49 states.
--John (Denver, CO)
I'm a right-winger living in the Nation's Capitol and I am solidly in favor of California secession. Let's face it, you'll never agree with my politics, and I will never agree with yours. But a seccession movement dovetails perfectly with the federalism envisioned by the Founding Fathers. So go your own way, try out your Leftist ideas on your own land, in your own way without the need to compromise with us. And we'll go the same way, doing our own thing. And unlike 1865, we'll do it without bloodshed, much like Czechslovakia did in 1992. My money is on the rest of the U.S. becoming the economic powerhouse it could become with Leftist thoughts ruining free-enterprise. We would become less burdened with gov't regulation, embracing lower taxes not collected via progressive rates, more cohesive social ideas about the family, and a return to Constitutional constraints. But let's meet again in 75 years and see what everyone wants to do then.
--Poshboy (Washington, DC)
If CA becomes an independent republic, my husband and I would move there instead of Canada. Are you worried that if your state is independent, you'll have an influx of liberals from other blue states? Also, (as a Civil War historian) I would recommend that your committee emphasize INDEPENDENCE rather than talking about secession. The Civil War demonstrated that secession is considered extralegal by the federal government.
--Terri (Fairview Heights, IL)
Sign me up and let us get to it!
--Michael (Sacramento, CA)
There is another factor that people tend to overlook and pertains back to the idea of California splitting into "four" countries. More than half of the police force for the southern counties is paid for by Northen residents tax money... Because the south does not have enough tax recources to control the problem of crime commited by illegals who do not pay into the tax system. . . I don't believe four seperate Californias is a practical ideal, instead each county should have more say as to where their money is sent and used for. The southern counties could spend more of their tax dollars on controlling the border instead of imprisoning those who get in too easy, it would financially be loads cheaper.
--Hillary (Placerville, CA)
The USA has been changed to the point where it is no longer recognizable as the country it was founded as.
--Bo (Monterey, CA)
Hey demagogues, don't you know that "Hate is not a family value"? You really hate President Bush that much? Every comment I read is sour grapes ... you get picked last for the team so you want to take your ball and go home. GROW UP! It isn't about religion, it's about the rugged individuals between the beaches believing it's what we should do for our country, not country for us. California has lost that ideal. I suggest you re-read John Kennedy, then read some books about Jefferson, Adams, Washington, and the founding of this great nation. California by itself will NEVER be as great as this country is right now (no matter how you feel about the current status.)
--Greg (San Diego, CA)
I fully support secession from the union, however, I am hesitant about some of the inflamatory language used on this site. It's not that I don't agree, of course I agree that our president is an irrational jesus-loving warlord. My issue is that pointing this out repeatedly will turn people away. It's best just to stick with the facts and let the people draw thier own conclusions. In fact, I would use the title "President" or "Mr" before his name. Afterall, one of the tenents of passivism involves showing the evil in your opponent by treating them with respect (while they abuse you). Besides, how many millions of websites are there poking fun at his ridiculous ruling? Don't follow the herd. Treat this as seriously as possible, and you are more likely to get a serious result. Just my humble opinion, feel free to ignore! Thank you for posting this site, let me know if you need volunteers.
--MissAnThrope (Oakland, CA)
I think California would be fine if we just cut-off San Francisco...or just had Barbara Boxer secede from the United States.
--Ralph (Orange County, CA)
Jesse: I have not been to the Mission district in many years. When last I was there, it was indeed a barrio. However, demographics can change and if that is so for the Mission then I apologize for any percieved slight I may have given. I do stand by the other barrio regions I named.
--Rico (Sacramento, CA)
I admire your efforts. I have lost all faith in our democracy. I say secession ASAP.
--Andrew (Fallbrook, CA)
Hi, in regards to Rico's comments, I do find it distressing to hear these disparaging remarks regarding how California will look in 2020 (52% Hispanic). The Mission district is neither what I'd characterize as blighted nor that it is solidly Hispanic. For one, the current doldrums our state's economy is in is due to both the mismanagement of our budget by Gray Davis, but also to the bursting of the dotcom bubble a few years ago. As a San Franciscan, I have seen the Mission many times and is a cotiguous part of San Francisco, not the whole thing. In reality, the Mission and Excelsior are what I'd characterize as working class neighborhoods with a vast diversity of cultures present. Hispanic, Asian and South Asian, white working class and African American.The Mission is a vibrant and growing community and I do not think that the shift in demographics towards a Hispanic majority is to be feared. Instead, efforts should be made to ensure that there are equitable spreads of local and state funding in regards to local schooling and other social services. FDR said it best that the only thing to fear is fear itself.
--Jesse (San Francisco, CA)
I do not favor secession, but instead I would like to see our state split into four states; San Diego region, LA/SoCal region, Bay Area and North Coast region, and Central Valley - NorCal region. At present, 1/8 of the country's population is being represented by 2 senators. We are not being equally represented in Washington, and that needs to be rectified. Splitting the state, which can be done by the state legislature and the Congress (similar to West Virginia splitting from Virginia in 1863) would not lead to a civil war and would result in a more represented California people.
--Mark (Folsom, CA)
Within 20 years California is going to be 52% Hispanic. And along with that comes the barrios and the gangs. One need only to look at east LA, the Mission district in San Francisco and the Barrio in Sacramento to see what California will become. California will drop from the world's 5th economy to #10 at best. California is already experiencing capital flight which was a result of the Davis regimes mis-management of the economy. With 52% Hispanic population, California if it seceeds at all might well end up as a state of Mexico again. Then there is the decades old question of North and South California. The plan to split the state has been placed on the ballot a few times and only defeated because the south had the population while the north has the water (which the south wants). Now that the population in the north, far more conservative than the south, has increased perhaps the north will desire to stay in the Union or even create it's own nation. With secession as the election regarding splitting the state is not necessary. The north can just go it's own way. The border would be from Santa Cruz north to Oregon with San Francisco as a southern enclave accessable by air & boat, or in the case of road, by border check-points and visa.
--Rico (Sacramento, CA)
The way the Bush administration and his corporate goons have treated California, we should consider ALL of our options. Leaving the Union, peacefully, is of course an option we should explore. If need be, we should rattle the economic sabre we wield and remind DC who they really are dealing with.
--Rob (San Francisco, CA)
This is long overdue. The rest of the nation hates us and I for one am tired of everything on television and the movies being nitpicked and censored by the religious right. We need to move on and Arnold can either come with us or well leave him behind. You would be surprised how many people are talking about this right now. Im ready to volunteer, pass out petitions, go door to door, whatever it takes. The America I loved is no longer America. Now its run by a bunch of uptight, religious freaks who dont give a damn about who they bomb in the name of Jesus. Lets go, California, NOW!
--Tessa (Santa Monica, CA)
Calif. secede??? Why bother with all the trouble when we are being invaded by the Mexican Government and will shortly be another Mexican State-Baja Norte. Then we can invade Nevada and Arizona. Remember the Alamo.....
--Jack (Costa Mesa, CA)
Fun website. However, you should reconsider your concept as the only blue parts of California are Los Angeles and San Francisco...everything else is bright red! Perhaps you could create something like the old isolated West Berlin and have an air corridor between Los Angeles and San Francisco. You could have freedom flights, supply flights, between the two cities and perhaps even create people exchanges. Have fun with it.
--James (Beverly Hills, CA)
NOTE: James has authored several websites encouraging liberals to leave, and

I feel we should make an effort to gain major influence in ALL major political parties that are opposed to the right-wing takeover. That way it can be more of a grassroots move instead of something seen as an extremist party.
--Ryan (Carlsbad, CA)
For me, it's an issue of re-asserting States' Rights and proportionate consideration of California issues. I began considering the idea of secesssion a couple of Presidents ago and the passage of time has made it all the more attractive. That one political party takes California for granted while the other despises it does not help the case for staying in the Union: either way we're going to get the short end of the stick. Both parties take our money but leave our ideas at the state line.
--Dennis (Glendora, CA)
Just wired you guys after a little look on the net. For California secession to succeed, the State Constitution will need to be amended from this:
"Article III Sec.1)The State of California is an inseparable part of the United States. The US Constitution is the supreme law of the land."
A Ballot initiative would be an excellent start in this direction, the goal being to repeal Section 1, Article Three. The State Constitution has been amended before by Ballot Initiatives, and this should be no exception. But for it to work,this movement will need publicity and consciousness raising efforts as well.
--Jesse (San Francisco, CA)

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