One billionaire’s plan to divide California into six states might actually make an appearance on the ballot in 2016. Clad in a tie depicting his vision for a divided state, venture capitalist Tim Draper on Tuesday delivered 1.3m signatures to Sacramento, the state’s current capital. That exceeds the state’s 807,615 signature requirement for getting a constitutional amendment on the ballot, though officials will still have to determine the validity of those signatures. Draper, who recently purchased 29,656 bitcoins in a government auction, said that he wants the state divided into six separate entities, each with their own constitutions, governments and, presumably, flags. He believes that dividing the state into six parts would solve California’s problems and lead to greater accountability.
The six proposed states are Jefferson, which would contain the so-called “Emerald Triangle”; North California, home to wineries, suburbs and the present state capital; Central California, where much of the country’s produce comes from; West California, with Hollywood, Disneyland and Los Angeles; South California, the hot, dry border state; and Silicon Valley. They would look like this.
“The chances of this passing are zero, zip, nada,” said UC Berkeley law professor John Yoo in an email.
In an article he co-wrote on the subject, Yoo said that Draper’s argument that California is “nearly ungovernable” doesn’t stand up to criticism because that claim can’t be proven.