California Legislators Ask To Form 51st State

Republican Jeff Stone is a member of the Riverside County Board of Supervisors and wants to be a citizen of South California, the 51st state. Stone is part of a movement in thirteen conservative counties to cleave off the conservative part of California into its own state. Of course, that could have a wee problem under the United States Constitution without congressional consent.

Advocates argue that California is simply too big to govern, though many suspect conservatives are tired off being tied to the liberal areas of the state. That was the view of the spokesman for Governor Jerry Brown, Gil Duran, who advised “If you want to live in a Republican state with very conservative right-wing laws, then there’s a place called Arizona.”

South California would include Orange and San Diego counties as well as Fresno, Imperial, Inyo, Kern, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Mono, Riverside, San Bernardino and Tulare counties. That would be a state of 13 million people.

Article IV, Section Three of the United States Constitution states in pertinent part:

New States may be admitted by the Congress into this Union; but no new States shall be formed or erected within the Jurisdiction of any other State; nor any State be formed by the Junction of two or more States, or parts of States, without the Consent of the Legislatures of the States concerned as well as of the Congress.

I wouldn’t start making those South California license plates just yet . . .

Source: LA Times

Jonathan Turley

16 thoughts on “California Legislators Ask To Form 51st State”

  1. It may just be the 50th State:

    The fine print: North Dakota may not be a state

    Never doubt the determination of an 82-year-old man to change the world — or at least the wording of his state’s constitution.
    Meet John Rolczynski: The Grand Forks, N.D., resident has been trying to tell his legislators that an error in the state’s founding document means that technically, North Dakota is not a state.
    Sounds like the ravings of a grumpy old man, but as it turns out, Rolczynski was right. News of uncertain statehood has put North Dakota in the spotlight and garnered big buzz.
    Here’s the story: Back in 1889, North Dakota was carved out of the Dakota Territory and admitted to the Union at the same time as South Dakota. Or so everyone thought.
    But the state founders who drafted the constitution left out the key requirement that the governor and other top officials take an oath of office, putting the state constitution in conflict with the federal one. So Rolczynski has been arguing for the last 16 years that the omission made the state illegitimate.
    Finally, somebody listened. State Senator Tim Mathern introduced a bill fixing the mistake that will be put to voters this spring. The happy historian, now confined to a nursing home with Parkinson’s disease, told the local news team Valley News Live that he was “glad that I was able to see this thing corrected.”
    Not that he’s finished with the founders: The eagle eye claims he’s found another error in the constitution, this time having to do with the state’s eastern border. Stay tuned.

  2. Being a life long resident of SoCal (sixty-eight plus years) and being the son of a lifelong resident of SoCal. I have seen many attempts to divide California into two states. That is probably never going to change. It is part of the California Heritage. This attempt seems to be not about water disputes or any other ‘logical’ basis for separation but rather is a bald faced attempt to grab two addiitional Bat Shit Crazy US Senators since among the 13 counties included in the new state 12 are overwhelming GOP with the lonely exception of Imperial County which is the southeast corner of the state. It is laughable that Jeff Stone, the member of the Riverside County Board of Stupidvisors who has proposed this latest division has the cojones to call it South California (I keep wanting to type Carolina instead of California) when portions of the ‘new state’ are north of san francisco and most of the ‘new state’ lies along the eastern slope of the Sierra and “South California” excludes the largest populated urban area, Los Angeles County. Probably because it is overwhelming democratic. Since Riverside county runs from the Santa Ana Mountains ridgeline to the Arizona border, perhaps Supervisor Stone might just want his entire county to join Arizona where he will be happy with likeminded BSCs.

  3. I say that Texas, SoCal and Arizona should be allowed to secede and form their own country “Lunacy”.

  4. Vaguely seriously: We really do have a structural problem with the Senate and the Electoral College that folks in low population states North Dakota have an imbalanced degree of representation compared with people in states like CA, IL, NY, etc.

    While we shouldn’t allow just the right-wing cooks in CA to split off, if we can’t fix the Senate or the (painfully pointless and problematic) Electoral College, then maybe we should take some of the largest states and split them up into several states each? (It would be nice to merge a few low-populations states while we’re at it. AlasIdaWyMoKota has an interesting sound to it, no? And with a population of about 5 million, it would something like a real state! And it would have something like 8 federal reps, which is one more than they collectively have now!)

    But specifically about this “South California” split off proposal: Here in Chicago, we run into this sort of thing periodically. Cook County encompasses almost all of Chicago, along with some better off and less well off suburbs. Folks in the better off, northwestern suburbs periodically winge about splitting off from the rest of Cook. (I’m sure that skin color has nothing to do with these proposals, by the way. Just in case you were wondering. Nothing at all….) Back in the 70s or 80s the ball really got rolling for this sort of thing. Supposedly in a closed-door meeting, the then head of the County presented a bill to the various mayors of the separatist burbs. He supposedly said, “Look, there are several billion dollars worth of County infrastructure in your communities. You buy it out from us, and we’ll let you go and form your own county.” That killed the idea pretty quickly.

    I wonder what the bill would be for state infrastructure in those separatist counties in California?

  5. Michaelb makes some valid points and I believe his last statement should be taken with real seriousness …”Suggesting secession may not be an answer but it certainly is a cry of frustration.”

    Frustrated citizens turn against both established political parties creating a power vacuum that could adversely affect our entire nation politically and economically.

    I don’t believe I’m crying “wolf” and that there is some truth in the statement, “As goes California, so goes the nation.”

    (If I wanted to cite that quote I’d have to start with “As Maine goes, so goes the nation.” and work forward to about 1968 when California was substituted for Maine in the Kennedy/Reagan/Rockefeller/Humphrey/Nixon/McCarthy polls … best I can do:,6635053&dq=as+california+goes+so+goes+the+nation&hl=en

  6. There are problems that are thought to be from the great size. The administrative law courts make up their own rules. ( down to what color pen to use) They get cleaned up and soon drift back to little thiefdoms. In workers compensation, northern California rates upper extremities injuries differently than southern California. Not sure how that is legal but much appears to be due to the power of a handful of individuals. The State has the 7th largest economy in the world with a government really not up to the task. Many of the significant laws are created by proposition as the elected representatives will not do their jobs. Huge amount of money pours in from out of state for most elections as even the size of the shadow of this humongous states effects those around it. Restricting taxation without the corresponding spending has caused problems. ( sales tax is near 9% and State income tax is fairly large also) But at the time when real estate appreciation outpaced pretty much everywhere except Hong Kong something had to stop the property taxes being larger than the mortgage. Immigration has had a huge impact. The thirst for cheap ( and needed) labor has caused a divide between the police and border patrol. The police overlook obvious illegal immigrants ( often living in storm drains or under bridges) and the border patrol just don’t go where they might accidentally see it. This has placed a huge burden on the health and education system. Those that speak Spanish are given preference in employment over competence. Now add in highway funds that must serve a very densely populated southern area and a relatively sparsely populated northern area. One can not get pot holes filled while highways that few will use are built. The north and south have significant weather differences with funding as if it is the same. Now if you can show me a state that has solved all those issues, I am all ears. Suggesting secession may not be an answer but it certainly is a cry of frustration.

  7. The fault lines of this fiction do not even match the older fault lines (also fiction) between Northern and Southern CA. The divisions are completely made up in both cases, amounting to no more than a tribal Hattfield/McCoy affair. No one is going anywhere. Face and fix the problems.

  8. Frank,

    I don’t know if “down a dead end ally” was a typo or not, but I sure hope not because that was funny.

  9. They could take a lesson from the State of Franklin. Franklin lasted about three years until Governor John Sevier was arrested. He would probably have been hanged for sedition had he not been a hero of the American Revolution.

    To his credit, Sevier was redeemed when he later became the first governor of Tennessee.

  10. It’s like a bunch of children in the back seat screaming “Will you stop touching me!” Grow up, SoCal.

  11. I always admire these great Americans who love their country soooooooooo much that they want nothing more than to leave it. In this case it is just the State but the idea is just the same.

    California is a perfect example of what you get when you allow people to vote themselves bread and circuses. For the last 30+ years they have passed and endless series of constitutional amendments restricting what and how much can be taxed and what and how much must be spent. Now they are down a dead end ally and the types of people who created the mess want out.

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