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California Focus: Latest secession move going nowhere

It’s secession season again in California. For the seventh time in 27 years or so, there’s a movement afoot to split the state.

Most secession attempts have sought to divide California on a north-south basis, dividing it roughly at the top of the Tehachapi Mountains between Los Angeles and Bakersfield. But the newest effort is a completely different twist, even carrying a name: The state of Jefferson.

This one originates in Siskiyou County, a mostly-rural, mountainous area bordering on Oregon that is roughly bisected by the north-south route of Interstate 5. County supervisors there, confronted by citizens frustrated by what they see as neglect and even persecution from state government, voted 4-1 early last month to leave. They’d like to take some other Northern California counties, and a few from southern Oregon, with them.

Supervisors in some neighboring counties will probably vote on the idea soon.

If the state of Jefferson were to become reality, its largest cities would include Ashland or Klamath Falls, Ore., or Eureka, in Humboldt County. If it stretched as far south as Shasta County, Redding would become its metropolis.


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