A report from the Washington Times on Monday says California could split into six separate states if a proposed ballot measure is successful. If you think that idea sounds far-fetched, you might want to think again. Famous venture capitalist Tom Draper supports the idea, and has vowed to do whatever it takes to make sure voters get a chance to decide the issue this fall.
Draper says California is "too big and bloated" and believes splitting the state would be beneficial to everyone involved. He has already filed the necessary paperwork that could lead to a ballot measure this November.
“Six Californias is an opportunity, an opportunity for Californians to get a fresh start, an opportunity for Californians to build new platforms for growth and prosperity,” Mr. Draper said at a recent press conference. “An opportunity to be awesome.”
If the measure is successful Draper has propsed that the six states be called, from north to south: Jefferson, North California, Silicon Valley, Central California, West California, and South California. Supporters of the initiative will need to collect 1 million signatures in order to get it on the ballot in November. Draper has said he will help finance the effort.
Mark Baird and Liz Bowen, who lead a group that has been working to create the state of Jefferson in northern California, say they welcome Draper's involvement, according to the Times report. Jefferson would be formed by splitting California's seven nothernmost counties from the rest of the state.
“I think it’s wonderful and excellent that someone of means has taken in an interest in our lack of representation,” Baird told the Times.
During his December press conference Draper said California has gone from being a national leader in education and infrastructure to a dysfunctional and unwieldy collective that has become “untenable and ungovernable.”
“There have been many good people governing our state for many years and they work very hard for Californians, but the results are horrendous,” he said. “We are the state that charges the most for the worst service. We are simply too big and bloated. This is not the fault of anyone. This has just happened. The status quo is not going to work for us.”
Some people may take exception to Draper's comment that California's problems are no one's fault. They certainly didn't "just happen" as Draper suggests. It would be more accurate to say decades of progressive policies have led California to the brink of financial collapse.
According to the Times, Draper said he will spend “as little as possible" on the effort, but he also added that he "will make sure it gets on the ballot so that Californians have a chance to make this a reality.”
You can read the full story on the Washington Times website.