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Conflict over a new California

SOJ

A Silicon Valley venture capitalist has gathered enough signatures to put a controversial measure on the California ballot. The proposition would split the state into three parts in a plan that complicates the State of Jefferson’s goals.

The group has been pushing to break up California for years, but founder and spokesman Mark Baird takes issue with the lines being drawn.

"It is time to break this state up. But it is very important that to recapture our liberty and our constitutional republic that we once enjoyed a long time ago that we do it with boundaries that are acceptable to the people within those counties,” Baird says.

The northern state would include San Francisco and Sacramento, which Baird believes would undermine the core of their movement - representation.

By including these cities Baird fears rural voices won't be heard. But the measure is officially on the ballot, and the group plans to take it as an opportunity - as a step to their final goal.

"If this thing passes, and no one knows whether it will or it won't, that's up to the will of the voters in California then we would have to go to Sacramento in force and demand a redraw of those boundaries to reflect our wants and our needs," Baird says.

If they achieve that, Baird says the state would want to welcome southern Oregon into their new state.

"We will fight to regain our liberty,” Baird says. “We will fight."

In addition to the northern region, the new California would also have a coastal region including Monterey County and Los Angeles. Southern California would cover counties ranging from Fresno to San Diego.

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