Donald Trump’s victory in the presidential election resulted in thousands of Californians taking to the streets into sometimes violent demonstrations. The statewide protests snowballed into a demand for the secession of the state from the US. This was, however, not a one off. A secessionist movement has been active in the state for long, much before Trump’s candidacy was floated. On Thursday, social media saw fervent campaigns with #Calexit and #Caleavefornia trending for several hours.
Celebrities announced support to secession of the state even going to the extent of promising funding for the secession campaign. Residents of the Golden State look to Brexit as something that they can also achieve. It seems an achievable idea much peaceful and different from the civil war that they have thrown.
California National Party has been actively leading the secessionist movement along with two pressure groups — Yes California and Californians for Independence. The flag of the state, which didn’t become a part of the US till 1847, still says California Republic and the spirit of rebellion still seems to be alive in some sections with Californians staunchly standing with the state. Some think the inherently liberal ‘Californian values’ will clash with President Trump’s idea of America.
The Golden State is also the largest and the most populated state in the US. It contributes more to the American GDP than any other state and if it were a country, its economy would be the sixth largest in the world. The US authorities will most likely stifle any such movement before it picks up its head significantly and it will be met by derision by both the Democrats and Republicans.
Juan Baptist Alvarado, during the revolution, led the state and declared it a sovereign and free state from Mexico. The state became a part of the US in 1847 after the end of the US Mexico war and signing of a peace treaty. Pro-secession Californians, which are in sizeable numbers, have latently mulled which secessionist movement to pledge allegiance to.
Yes California advocates for peaceful secession from the US using all legal and constitutional means. California National Party is a party that registered itself for the presidential elections. However, the state election commission says that it has tried to register, along with Independent California Party, under the banner Californian Independence.
California Freedom Initiative is also another active secessionist group. The group has laid down a plan of action for declaration of sovereignty and the steps to undertake post the declaration. The plan also gives advice for transition from being a state that is part of the US to a country that is an economic and trade partner to the US. It also proposes a timeline for the independence of California with a preamble and core principles.
Meanwhile, similar secessionist movements have also been going on in states like Vermont, Texas, New Hampshire, Hawaii and Texas.