The push for a California ballot initiative to divide the state up into six smaller states has failed, at least for now. Billionaire Timothy Draper, who thought up the six-state scheme, spent $5 million of his own money to get the 800,000 signatures needed to put it on the ballot. He managed to collect over one million, but a state-conducted random sampling concluded only 752, 685 of that million would count as valid. Draper intends, however, to keep fighting. From the Sacramento Business Journal:
“Six Californias collected more than enough signatures to place the initiative on the November 2016 ballot and we are confident that a full check of the signatures would confirm that fact,” Draper said in a statement on the effort’s website. […]
The plan includes separate states “North California,” which is home to Sacramento, and for “Silicon Valley,” which would includes parts of the Bay Area, and “West California” which would include San Luis Obispo and Los Angeles. The far north of present California would be split into “Jefferson,” Stockton and Fresno would be the big cities in “Central California,” and San Diego would be the biggest city in South California.
It’s a shame the initiative, at least for now, has failed—California as constituted is simply too big to work. We hope we haven’t seen the last of efforts to devolve power away from the huge, centralized CA bureaucracy. That may be hard, but California’s current snarl of competing interests and priorities is worth untangling.