A proposal to split California into three states “cleared its first hurdle,” so its proponent, billionaire Timothy C. Draper, can now seek signatures to qualify his proposal for next year’s ballot, according to NBC Bay Area.
Draper submitted paperwork earlier this year for the ballot proposition. He hopes initiative will be put up for a statewide vote in 2018.
“No one can argue that California’s government is doing a good job governing or educating or building infrastructure for its people,” Draper told The Times. “And it doesn’t matter which party is in place.”
Here’s what the divided-up California would look like:
As The New York Times reported, the three proposed new states — Southern California, Northern California and California — would have equal wealth and populations.
Still, there’s a long road ahead for the proposal. Voters, the state Legislature and the U.S. Congress would all have to approve the move, according to The Times.
In 2014, Draper called for California to be split into six states, according to The Los Angeles Times. He spent $4.9 billion to collect signatures for that proposal, but he didn’t receive enough signatures to qualify for that year’s ballot deadline.
Reports about a CalExit movement — aiming for secession from the U.S. — have been around for years.
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said on “Fox News Sunday” that the U.S. and California need each other and that secession is unlikely.
"California is the economic engine of the United States of America; we on our own, as a state, could be the sixth economic power in the world," he said. "The U.S. needs California as much as I believe California needs to be part of the United States."