Saturday, July 2, 2011

South California? Is Southern California Secession from the State of California Possible?

By the Left Coast Rebel

Secession is a possibility, even if remotely so. It would involve so-called "red" counties such as Orange, San Diego (where I live), King, Mariposa and eight other counties breaking off from the state, forming so-called South California.

The idea is being floated by Riverside County Supervisor Jeff Stone (good for him).

Many of us So-CAl business owners/tax payers/limited government proponents think (rightfully so) that Sacramento is broken beyond repair. Secession from California and formation of a "South California" would undoubtedly create a highly prosperous wealth-creating Hong Kong-esque hub set free from the choking tentacles of the progressive wealth-spreaders, welfare-state metropolis's of Sacramento, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Video from CBS/Los Angeles:

South California secession would also create another interesting dynamic. Because of the demographics of the 12 counties discussed, a permanent "purplish" swing state in electoral-college politics would be created, perhaps changing the nature of presidential politics forever -- if a significant chunk of California's electoral college votes were in play every presidential cycle.

It's a super long shot but interesting to contemplate nonetheless.

Hat-tip Leslie Eastman/Temple of Mut. Cross posted to LCR.

Updated: There's an unscientific poll up at the L.A./CBS affiliate carrying this story. The poll asks, "South California: politics as usual or time to split?"

The results aren't even remotely close:


  1. A South California secession needs to consider 3 things: Constitutionality, Economics, and Water Rights. Article IV, Section 3 of the Constitution says that any state can be formed out of another - with approval from that State's Legislature and Congress. The real question here is whether the North would want it, and I think they would. Majority of the Counties that are leaving have had some of the highest recession ratios, drought, and the most spread out population. Calif economy has been robbed of housing income since Prop 13 & neither Grey Davis nor Arnold Schwarzenegger had the political will to stop the runaway borrowing because of it. The Bay Area and LA would be better off without the drain on resources, and San Diego, Orange, Fresno, and the Inland Empire would get along just fine without them. As for water, less mercury-tainted San Joaquin farm water & more desalinization / wastewater reclamation plants will do us good. A smart thing to do would be to put the new Capital in San Bernardino, because of its central location and to have the revenue transform the recessed areas. San Berdo & San Fran have always been rivals, separated by Main St vs. Wall St of the West mentality, anyway. So, its a win-win.

  2. "The real question here is whether the North would want it" Having lived in Northern California most of my life, the discussions I heard in the past always revolved around Northern California succeeding from the south. Depending on where the lines were drawn, I think northerners would cotton to the idea as well.

  3. "succeeding" = seceding.


  4. I'm in Jacksonville, FL, but back in my Navy days I spent 5 years in the Bay area (Alameda), and 2 years in Long Beach. It is definitely 2 different worlds. It's been a while since I lived there, so I'm not as up on CA as I once was. But it sounds like the win-win situation that Stephen describes.

  5. Otis: It all depends on where you draw the line. Stone wants to gerrymander LA into "Northern California. An influx of that many liberals combined with the exit of many conservative counties in the south state would doom Northern California to be a far left liberal state.

    I'd settle for two competitive states, but, politics aside, I'm not sure the south could survive economically without LA.

  6. Otis: Thanks for the vote to win. Proof: California is considered a blue state for presidential and senatorial elections anyway, but a liberal North might not last. GOP would make it a priority, and with the 3.73 million in the North eligible to vote but not registered, added to the Republican's 3.05 mil, GOP could acquire as much as 54.8% of the vote in the North if they campaigned hard enough. Okay, so 42.1% is more realistic given current demographics, but that is still a fighting chance. Among the two parties in the South, Dems would start out with 44.3% of the vote. With a 4.5% margin of error plus 2.3% independents most counties, it will be a photo finish close race every time, North and South. Besides, as a contrary economist, I have already gone over the numbers. All things being equal, the newly formed state would have 30.1 to 35.3% of the revenues and the same for most outlays of the former state - with the exception of only 3 of the Univ of Calif campuses, and 0.6% less people on SSI. So, it could not only work, it could make So Cal better off than its counterpart to the North.

  7. Your numbers may or may not reflect reality, depending on where the line would be drawn.

    And unless you are anticipating armed conflict, it would have to be drawn with the consent of at least a majority of all current Californians, would have to withstand court challenges all the way to the Supreme Court, and then, would be subject to the laws regarding admission of a new state, which would take at least a majority in Congress, whose Senate, last time I looked, was heavily Democrat and would not look favorably on a Democrat cash cow being divided, or the possibility of diluting the liberal majority in the Senate.

    It is a Conservative pipe dream. Like playing the lottery, only far more expensive.

  8. If something isn't done to correct the job problem and all of our businesses keep leaving for Texas or Utah then what? the liberals have ruin California,


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