Californians once again want out of US union

Thursday, August 17, 2017

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LOS ANGELES, United States (AFP) – A group of Californians has submitted yet another initiative to secede from the United States as the country is gripped by one of its worst political crisis in recent history.

The new "Calexit" ballot proposal put forward on Thursday by a fringe political group calls for a constitutional convention to overhaul one of the country's founding documents on grounds it is incompatible with what the Golden State stands for.

"The current relationship between the federal government of The United States of America and California prevents California, and other states, from taking ownership over their future and must be revised," the initiative states.

Supporters hope the measure -- similar to two others submitted this year that ultimately fizzled out -- will be put to voters on the 2018 ballot.

The new proposal, titled "California Calls for a Constitutional Convention," would need the support of the state legislature before it can be submitted to Congress.

Past similar measures for independence have all fallen through.

The latest initiative says "the world has changed dramatically since 1787" and that Californians must be allowed to chart their own course as concerns various issues, ranging from immigration to the environment, without interference from the federal government.

"We believe that justice for all requires constant vigilance and a thorough examination of laws and governmental actions that disproportionately impact diverse segments of society," it adds.

"These beliefs depend on resolutely defending these Californian values, which support every individual's hopes and dreams for the future."

With nearly 40 million people, Democratic California is the country's most populous state and the sixth largest economy in the world.

It has been at loggerheads with President Donald Trump's administration over its immigration and environmental policies as well as other issues.

Thursday's initiative was submitted with the country reeling over Trump's response to the violence that erupted last weekend at a rally staged by neo-Nazis and white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia.

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