Californians will vote about dividing the state into three new states in November.
The plan, called Cal 3, has implications for the entire country. It would bump the U.S. Senate up to 104 members as well as throw off the balance of the Electoral College. California currently has 55 electoral votes, but if the plan succeeds, the three new states would share 59 Electoral College votes between them.
The plan is the brainchild of venture capital investor Tim Draper, who has gathered more than 400,000 valid signatures for his Cal 3 proposition, according to the Los Angeles Times.
The initiative was approved for a majority vote by California election officials on Tuesday. If a majority of voters say “yes,” there could be two new states in the Union. This is a big return investment for Draper, who has spent millions on his scheme and whose last push for a divided California failed in 2014.
— Lucas Clark (@LucasClark_SLO) June 13, 2018
His plan would create Northern California (which would span the Oregon border to just north of Monterey), California (which would run along the coast and include Los Angeles) and Southern California (which would have little coastline and include Fresno and San Diego).
Even if it passes in November and clears the hurdle of congressional approval, the plan will have a long way to go. Opponents of Cal 3 ask how the three proposed states will divide up the state university and retirement systems. It’s also unclear how many representatives each state would have in the U.S. House if the measure goes through.
The last state to be created from an existing state was West Virginia, born in 1863 so that its citizens could join the Union while the rest of Virginia joined the Confederacy.
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