Adults understand that when couples no longer get along, they divorce. “Irreconcilable differences” is the most common reason for the split. Loosely defined, irreconcilable differences are beliefs or personality traits that render a couple incompatible and unable to sustain the marriage. In the end, the couple decides that while neither party is to blame, divorce is the best option.
In the United States, political divisiveness has reached its highest point since the Civil War. Conservatives can no longer find any common ground to unite them with radical Democrats, and for many, the progressive agenda is an unsustainable ideation that adversely affects their moral belief system, quality of life, and happiness.
Many states, and even counties and cities within states, are looking to file those papers and escape a loveless marriage.
On the surface, California is one of the most progressive and toxic progressive strongholds in the nation. It’s important to remember that not all Californians are on board with liberal ideation, they are simply outnumbered.
And in El Dorado County, California, residents have had enough, and they want out.
El Dorado County is east of Sacramento and has an estimated population of 191k residents. Activist Sharon Durst is spearheading the county’s efforts to secede from California because of a lack of representation for the rural county. “We all knew that our problem was representation, living in Northern California,” Durst explains. “We don’t have a voice. We don’t have one representative — state or federal government — that lives in the border of El Dorado County.”
Durst is no stranger to the uphill battle the residents of El Dorado face. In 2015, she joined the State of Jefferson movement, aimed at merging northern California counties with several in southern Oregon into a single, new state.
For Durst and the residents of El Dorado County, the stakes couldn’t be higher. Durst wrote on Substack, a newsletter platform, “El Dorado relies mostly on its income from tourism and on the unhappy people from Sacramento, the Bay Area, and Los Angeles buying residential or second homes away from the crime-ridden metropolitan areas. The people of El Dorado County want their former livelihoods restored and their rural way of life respected.”
Her proposal, quickly gaining ground throughout the rural county, requests that El Dorado be permitted to secede from California and become the Republic of El Dorado State. While more than 200 secession attempts have been made by other regions throughout California, Durst is counting on a loophole to achieve her goal. “We think we have grounds to stand on the fact that El Dorado was actually a county before California was a state,” Durst said. As such, El Dorado could theoretically sidestep the state and congressional legislative approval required by the constitution to change a state’s borders.
Because El Dorado was a designated county prior to joining California, she reasons that the county would be considered by Congress as “other property.” Per Article 4, Section 3, of the Constitution, “Congress shall have Power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States; and nothing in this Constitution shall be so construed as to Prejudice any Claims of the United States, or of any particular State.”
The biggest hurdle to her argument, however, is one sentence in the same Article: “No new State shall be formed or erected within the Jurisdiction of any other State without the consent of the involved state’s legislature as well as Congress.”
El Dorado isn’t the only region seeking to distance itself from blue states; residents of twelve rural eastern Oregon counties are seeking to join with Idaho. In Illinois, rural counties are seeking an alliance with conservative Kentucky, and some counties in Colorado have expressed a desire to join Wyoming.
In fact, a startling poll conducted in 2021 found that secession was growing in popularity amongst all political parties, with 37% of respondents supporting it. The South sees the greatest support, with 66% of those polled indicating a desire to secede. According to the poll, “Republicans are most secessionist in the South and Mountain regions whereas it is Democrats on the West Coast and in the Northeast. In the narrowly divided Heartland region, it is partisan independents who find the idea most attractive.”
While a single county, such as El Dorado, has never successfully seceded, the idea is not without precedent. West Virginia was formed when a group of counties abandoned Confederate Virginia during the Civil War. North and South Dakota ended an unhappy “marriage” in 1889, and Maine, Kentucky, and Vermont were all formed after splitting away from their original states.
Crumbling California has faced the divorce discussion more than 220 times. In a relationship where a breakup is imminent, it’s human nature to soften the blow by saying, “It’s not you. It’s me.”
Sorry, California, it’s definitely you.