YES California launch independence campaign with familiar sign

A new indy ref campaign starts today in what looks like it will be a two year fight between a largely left wing grassroots movement dismayed at getting a right wing government  they never voted for against the establishment in a battle to win the hearts and minds of the people.

But don’t panic it won’t be Scotland going through the gruelling and all consuming process (not yet anyway) it will instead be the most populated and influential state in the whole of the United States of America.

But the team organising the campaign were obviously inspired by the magical time that was Scotland in 2014 as they have based their logo and campaign on that lead by then First Minister Alex Salmond and his predecessor Nicola Sturgeon.

The Yes Scotland campaign was of course ultimately unsuccessful, losing to the No side by a margin of 45-55, but the way it galvanised it’s base support  and got so many of the working class communities registered to vote and interested in politics has clearly left an imprint over the Atlantic.

Inspiring: but Yes Scotland were ultimately on the losing side

Although they were less impressed by, the ironically successful, Brexit campaign and have distances themselves from that and the name “Cali-exit” which they refuse to use.

The Yes California movement yesterday received the green light to begin the campaign to see the sunshine state go it alone after California’s secretary of state Alex Padilla cleared a potential ballot measure that could see the state’s constitution amended.

Spurred on by an intense hatred of Donald Trump and a feeling of unfairness over the disproportionate voting system that seen the state of 38 million people, and who voted for Clinton by a historical landslide of nearly 5 million more votes that eventual winner Trump, dictated to by states like Idaho and Arkansas that are minuscule in comparison through the crazily unfair electoral college system .

Rivals: But Trump won Presidency despite losing the popular vote (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

But they still have a few hurdles to get over in order to get freedom on the ballot.

First of all the Yes California team have to collect 585,407 valid signatures from registered voters by July 25th this year.

If they succeed, a vote to amend the state’s constitution will be included on a 2018 ballot, which, if approved, would open up Californians to have a referendum on full independence from the United States in 2019.

And if President Trump continues as he has started it’s hard not to see many Californians feel they have no choice.

A protest outside a recent Trump event in California

 

It certainly could never be argued that California, the most populated state, home to Hollywood, Los Angeles, Beverly Hills and San Francisco and with an economy of $3 trillion that would take France and the United Kingdom jointly held spot as the 5th biggest economy in the world behind only USA, China, Japan and Germany.

Los Angeles alone is the fourth most visited city in the world and only behing New York, London so the threat of losing that alone will be enough to make some in the Whitehouse wake up in a cold sweat never mind the importance of the multi-billion dollar home of the entertainment industry in Hollywood.

 

 

But only time will if the influence of Yes Scotland’s campaign will resonate with people in the mansions of Beverly Hills and Hollywood as much they did with the people of Easterhouse and Castlemilk.

Even if they pass the first stage and actually manage to get the choice on a ballot it will give them unprecedented power to hold the Trump administration to the fire as they wont want to risk losing such a huge chunk of their economy.

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