By Jon Dougherty
(TNS) As Democrats continue to do battle ahead of the party’s nomination and President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign makes bank with new donors, the partisan divide in Washington — and throughout the country — could not be more noticeable.
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In fact, differences between right and left are becoming so stark that, once again, there is talk of “secession” being bandied about, but this time mostly by frustrated conservatives surrounded by lunatic liberalism.
As the Washington Times reported Thursday, the divide is both geographic and demographic:
You’ve got Oregonians seeking to cascade into Idaho, Virginians who identify as West Virginians, Illinoians fighting to escape Chicago, Californians dreaming of starting a 51st state, and New Yorkers who think three states are better than one.
Separation fever is sweeping the nation as quixotic but tenacious bands of frustrated rural dwellers, suburbanites and conservatives seek to break free from states with legislatures increasingly controlled by liberal big cities and metropolitan strongholds.
“Oregon is controlled by the northwest portion of the state, Portland to Eugene. That’s urban land, and their decisions are not really representing rural Oregon,” said Mike McCarter, president of Move Oregon’s Border for a Greater Idaho. “They have their agenda and they’re moving forward with it, and they’re not listening to us.”
Meanwhile, in Virginia — which is now being governed by a new Democrat majority — “Vexit,” or “Virginia exit,” is becoming increasingly popular, with northeastern counties considering merging with neighboring West Virginia, at the invitation of the latter.
“To be honest, if this works — you’ve got a lot of red areas in this country that are totally dominated by a blue metropolis,” said Vexit2020 leader Rick Boyer, a former member of the Campbell County Board of Supervisors. “If it works in Virginia, there’s no reason it can’t reshape the political map.”
Such campaigns can only be described longshots — no state has split off since West Virginia was carved from Virginia in 1863 — but the growing interest comes as those living outside cities wrestle with the consequences of the 1964 Supreme Court decision in Reynolds v. Sims.
The ruling established the principle of “one man, one vote,” effectively eliminating state legislative districts apportioned by county or geography instead of population, which hobbled in the influence of smaller and rural communities.
Illinois state Rep. Brad Halbrook, a Republican, has introduced a resolution to spin off Chicago and declare it the 51st state. He reasoning: “Downstate voices are simply not being heard because we’ve been forced into this democracy that’s concentrated power into a small geographical area of the state.”
Hence, the fallacy behind the National Popular Vote Compact, which would award a state’s presidential electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote: “Democracy” isn’t ‘fair,’ it’s mob rule.
“Sen. Everett Dirksen said that with Reynolds v. Sims, the major metropolitan areas, the large population centers, are going to control the rest of the state, and that’s what’s happened with Illinois, California, Nevada, Washington, Oregon, New York,” Halbrook added.
The reality of these movements, however, is that constitutionally, they’re not going anywhere. Our founding document prevents the formation of new states by combining territories in existing states without the approval of Congress — and both state legislatures.
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And that isn’t going to happen.
So what’s left? Halbrook is realistic; he says nothing will happen without a popular uprising — but then, we all know how that ended last time.
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