A Journal of People report
The California State Capitol in Sacramento. Photo via Wikimedia Commons
A recent CNBC.com report said:
“Backers seeking to break California away from the U.S. started collecting signatures Friday to get a proposed independence measure on the 2018 statewide ballot.
“This isn’t the first effort aimed at California secession but leaders say the previous tries were mostly about building awareness of the issue and increasing public support. They say recent polls show more Californians want a divorce from the union and believe that President Donald Trump’s election also has boosted their cause.
“‘We definitely see that there’s some newfound support for this and we want to get the signatures out there, especially now because we’re in the first 100 days of Donald Trump’s presidency when he’s going to be aggressively pursuing his policies that the people of California are going to reject — and have rejected,’ Louis Marinelli, president of the Yes California Independence movement, said in an interview Friday.”The report by Jeff Daniels said:
“However, the state-prepared summary on the petition from California Secretary of State Alex Padilla calls out the uncertain road ahead in this effort, which would have multiple hurdles.
“Specifically, the summary said ‘the fiscal impact of this measure is dependent on various factors, including a vote by the people on this measure, a subsequent vote on California independence, possible legal challenges, and implementation issues. Assuming that California actually became an independent nation, the state and its local governments would experience major, but unknown, budgetary impacts.’”
“In terms of annual GDP, California would rank sixth worldwide if it were a separate nation. California, home to about one out of every eight Americans, voted in favor of Democrat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election.”
The “California secession movement starts gathering petition signatures” headlined report said:
“According to Marinelli, the so-called Calexit backers have about 7,000 supporters mobilized to gather signatures statewide for the new California nationhood initiative. The California Secretary of State’s office said Thursday the backers of the measure must collect the signatures of 585,407 registered voters to qualify for the ballot. Organizers have until July 25, 2017, to meet the requirement.
“‘We think it’s going to be quite easy for us to make the sell,’ said Marinelli. ‘California is a different place and has its own culture, its own history, its own identity, its own world view, and its own ideology in a large respect. So we would feel better off if we can set our own destiny, set our own path forward and not be connected to a lot of these obsolete policies of the American system.’
“Added Marinelli, ‘There’s a lot of this dysfunction going on in the American system, the corruption in Washington, the animosity within the United States as a whole. So we want to break away from all that and set a new path forward. To establish for ourselves some kind of progressive republic on the western shores of North America.’
“The referendum aims to repeal a provision in the state’s constitution that reads ‘California is an inseparable part of the United States of America, and the United States Constitution is the supreme law of the land.’
“‘What we want to do is give the people of California the chance to vote yes or no on independence,’ said Marinelli. ‘If the people want to stay in the country and they want to remain a state they can vote no. We’re certainly going to be focusing on the argument about convincing people why it’s better for us to become our own country.’
“Calexit backers see divorce from the union as a two-step process — first the vote in 2018 to repeal the ‘inseparable’ provision from the state constitution and then a special election in 2019 for the independence vote itself.”
A report by Times of San Diego said:
“Backers of an initiative to hold a vote on whether California should become a separate nation have received permission to begin gathering signatures, Secretary of State Alex Padilla announced Thursday.
“The initiative was inspired by the 2014 unsuccessful referendum that sought to make Scotland an independent nation, according to former San Diegan Louis J. Marinelli, president of the Yes California Independence Campaign.
“‘California is a conquered territory which was annexed and made a state by an act of Congress but the people of California never actually affirmatively voted to join the union like the people of the other states had the chance to do,’ Marinelli told City News Service.
“‘This puts us in a unique position where international law supports our right to self-determination and we designed this initiative to first establish a mandate for independence.’
“The initiative includes provisions requiring the vote for independence to receive at least a 55 percent yes vote and turnout to be at least 50 percent of registered voters.”
The “Signature Gathering Approved for California Independence Initiative” headlined report said:
“The reasons to support independence for California are spelled out in Yes California’s Calexit Blue Book.
“They include freeing California from being subject to U.S. trade policy; keeping all the taxes paid by Californians in California; having control of California’s natural resources; and allowing California to set policies on immigration, the environment, health care and education.”
The report posted by Chris Jennewein on January 26, 2017 said:
“To Marinelli, ‘there is no reason for people to oppose this initiative.’
“‘If we qualify, we will have a serious conversation about the merits of statehood versus the merits of nationhood and the people of California will vote to affirm their desire to remain a state by voting no, or express their desire to become an independent country by voting yes,’ Marinelli said.
“‘If the campaign to defeat our independence vote can make their case, then the people will vote no. If we prevail, the people will vote yes. Let’s have an open and honest conversation about our future and let the people vote.’”
Another report by Times of San Diego said:
“The election of Republican businessman Donald Trump as President of the United States has some Californians dreaming – of their own country.
“One in every three California residents supports the most populous U.S. state’s peaceful withdrawal from the union, according to a new Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll, many of them Democrats strongly opposed to Trump’s ascension to the country’s highest office.
“The 32 percent support rate is sharply higher than the last time the poll asked Californians about secession, in 2014, when one-in-five or 20 percent favored it around the time Scotland held its independence referendum and voted to remain in the United Kingdom.
“California also far surpasses the national average favoring secession, which stood at 22 percent, down from 24 percent in 2014.
“The poll surveyed 500 Californians among more than 14,000 adults nationwide from Dec. 6 to Jan. 19 and has a credibility interval, a measure of accuracy, of one percentage point nationally and five percentage points in California.”
The report headlined “Poll Shows Californians Dreaming of Separate Country without Trump” said:
“The idea of secession is largely a settled matter in the United States, though the impulse to break away carries on in some corners of the country, most notably in Texas.
“While interest has remained about the same nationwide, it has found more favor in California and the concept has even earned a catchy name — ‘Calexit’.”
The report posted by Chris Jennewein on January 24, 2017 cited Stephen Miller, 70, a retired transportation planner who lives in Sacramento: “I don’t think it’s likely to happen, but if things get really bad it could be an option.” He “tended to support” secession.
The report also cited Democratic political consultant Steve Maviglio, who last year ran the campaign against a proposed ballot initiative to break California into six states: “There’s such hostility towards Trump that many citizens believe it would be smarter to leave than fight.”
With 39 million residents and the sixth-largest economy in the world, California is already a nation-state, Maviglio said.
The report cited Maviglio and others: In practice, secession is highly unlikely, facing political, legal and possibly even military obstacles, considering that the United States fought the Civil War over the secession of the South.
The report said Yes California’s email list jumped from fewer than 2,500 before the election to 115,069 currently, the group’s president, Louis Marinelli, said in a telephone interview.
Marinelli, who moved to Yekaterinburg in Russia, about 1,000 miles east of Moscow, in September and has lived in Russia on and off for several years, said he became disenchanted with the United States after difficulties arose with the immigration process for his Russian-born wife.
Citing Marinelli the report said:
Recently activists from the group waved signs saying “California out of the United States” and “U.S. out of California” at anti-Trump protests in Los Angeles and San Francisco.
“In Lodi, California, Democratic party activist Bruce Rubly, who told Reuters/Ipsos pollsters that he “strongly supported” California secession, said he thinks it could happen if Trump and the Republicans who dominate the U.S. Congress impose conservative policies on such issues as the environment, immigration and marijuana legalization.
“‘There’s a whole series of things that are going to get Californians riled up,’ said Rubly, 68. ‘And if he pushes those buttons in the wrong way, there’s going to be hell to pay.’”
A November 22, 2016 datelined report by Times of San Diego cited Marinelli:
The “secession campaign is not just about protesting” Donald J. Trump’s election as president.
The campaign is also about “the flawed fiscal system in which California has lived for decades subsidizing the other states … while we lack adequate funding for health care, education, social services, infrastructure, and other quality of life issues here in California” and “the flawed political system in which California has lived for decades, one where nothing gets done and progress is held back by hundreds of millions of non-Californians who do not share the same worldview as us, and who have a different culture, a different set of priorities, and different plans for the future,” Marinelli said.
“We in California could get so much more done if we could free ourselves from the shackles of statehood,” Marinelli said.