The UK Guardian wondered this week if the “New California” movement is the Golden State’s equivalent of the next Brexit.
Originally named the Manchester Guardian, the 197-year old daily is one of the most influential left-wing publications in Europe, with a combined print and online readership of 9.4 million.
A Guardian reporter who recently toured California’s agricultural Central Valley wrote:
“The widening divides in the US have played out in stark ways in California, where clashes between Trump supporters and those threatened by his agenda have led to violent conflicts, battles between neighbors and dueling campaigns to draw new borders that tear apart the country’s most populous state.”
California has long been ground-zero for progressive campaigns: the Free Speech Movement in the 1960s, the Black Panthers in the 1970s, the LGBT Movement in the 1980s, the environmental movement in the 1990s, the advent of medical marijuana, and the anti-Trump “Resistance.”
The Guardian sees the institutional viciousness exhibited by California’s Democrat Party against the Trump presidency as feeding a backlash that has managed to unite traditionally conservative Republicans and working-class Democrats in the state’s rural regions to demand formation of another state.
The Guardian notes that the State of Jefferson, just prior to the out-break of WW II, was the first libertarian effort by Northern Californians to reduce government interference and lower taxes. Silicon Valley venture capitalist Tim Draper tried to fund a ballot initiative to split the state into Six Californias in 2014. Hyperloop co-founder Shervin Pishevar, following President Trump’s 2016 election, called for a Calexit for the state to secede from the United States and become its own sovereign nation.
The Guardian believes it is still “far-fetched” that New California will be successful in splitting into an extremely-progressive and an extremely-conservative state. But the paper finds the New California movement as a “resistance to the resistance, channeling the rightwing rage directed at the liberal havens of San Francisco and Los Angeles.”
Movement founder Paul Preston told Breitbart News that the difference between prior failures and New California is that the new movement is “doing it by the book” in following the U.S. Constitution’s Article IV, Section 3 requirements to admit a new state.
Preston agrees with Democrat Governor Jerry Brown that California faces an existential financial threat in the next recession from its massive debt and pension obligations, coupled with its reliance on $20 billion per year of capital gains, mostly from Silicon Valley.
Preston says, “The recent 1,000-point stock market crashes are like meteors screaming down on Sacramento politicians.”
He adds, “When the financial extinction event hits and old California is on verge of financial default, liberal politicians in the state’s 11 densely populated counties are going to be open to spinning off the other 47 counties that progressive policies have made tax consumers. We look forward creating a win-win solution that works for both California and New California.”