9 Vt. state office candidates favor secession

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SHELBURNE, Vt. (AP) — Several Vermont political candidates want their state to call it quits with America.

In what organizers call the first statewide slate of pro-secession candidates, nine people under the Vermont Independence Day banner are planning to run for governor, lieutenant governor and seven seats in the state Senate.

They say they want a fresh start with a real democracy.

Their cause is the latest incarnation of a movement that’s bubbled in Vermont and elsewhere for years.

Few observers give them much hope of winning even in a left-leaning state where the popular Republican governor’s decision not to seek re-election has touched off a scramble among would-be successors. Five Democrats and a Republican are in a wide-open race for the seat headed to the November election.