Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Why it's so hard for states to break up

Unhappy with your state government? Good luck making a new one.

This state will probably remain confined to a barn banner. 

With the increased polarization of American politics in recent years, localities around the nation have sought to break free from their in-state foes and establish their own new states.

Forget the far-fetched secession plans floated in places like Texas, where disgruntled politicians have suggested severing themselves from the United States entirely. Intrastate rifts are different ideas altogether, ones which on the surface appear to be much more logistically feasible.

Yet for all the talk, don't expect to see a 51st state any time soon.

Last week, a northern California county voted to secede from the rest of the state. The country, Siskiyou, asked other northern California and southern Oregon municipalities to join it in creating the new State of Jefferson. Piece of cake, right?

Except people can't go around arbitrarily declaring they've carved new states out of old ones. If they could, we would probably have the state of Austin, as well as Jon Rulesland, an autocratic state encompassing solely my apartment.

As the Washington Post's Michael S. Rosenwald noted in an article on a nascent secession movement in Maryland, statehood via secession is a monumental task:

For the rest of the story: http://theweek.com/article/index/249330/why-its-so-hard-for-states-to-break-up

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