There comes a time in the history of many nations when a distinct people must pursue the path of self-reliance for their own survival. A course which may have once been unwise and unthinkable can become necessary and inevitable. California has reached such a point in its history. A land of extensive geographic, human, and financial diversity, replete with natural resources, home to a population of nearly 40 million people, and an over $2.75 trillion economy, cannot reasonably be called anything but a nation. An inevitable consequence of this is that California has problems of a national scale that can only be successfully solved with the power and authority of an independent republic.
Increasingly, Californians are unable to rely on the federal government to effectively secure their well-being, while our revenue and income is used to fund projects throughout the United States and push for its interests (military, economic, geopolitical) around the globe. This is exacerbated by a partisan political and electoral structure that can afford to openly disregard our needs, since in both the Senate and electing the President, our voice is effectively silenced. Californians must recognize that no one will look out for our interests unless we do so ourselves.
To this end, the California National Party supports constructing an enduring program of strengthening California while simultaneously laying the groundwork for ever greater autonomy, self-determination, and ultimately independence with recognition by the United Nations, the United States, and other actors in the international community. This will require the assent and cooperation of the government and people of the United States, and therefore California must prepare to enter good faith negotiations with the federal government to assure a mutually agreed upon course for the peaceful legal and political separation of our respective countries.
While many Americans may question our motivations, we ask that they look back on and respect their own past to see a national moment when “it becomes necessary for one People to dissolve the Political Bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the Powers of the Earth, the separate and equal Station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them.” At such times, it is the right of that people to “institute new Government, laying its Foundation on such Principles, and organizing its Powers in such Form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.” We in California see the wisdom of these words today and sincerely hope that the people of the United States will also continue to cherish their own founding principles.
The California National Party lays out three legal, potentially complementary, paths to ultimate independence. Each requires petition by the people of California, by referendum and/or through our elected representatives, and consent by the United States Congress and President, although at no stage is a constitutional amendment required:
- Admission of California into the United States was a legislative act that can be undone in the same fashion; states are only constitutionally forbidden to leave the United States unilaterally, but can with “consent of the states,” see Supreme Court decision Texas vs. White.
- Seek a change of status within the federal system away from full statehood toward modified commonwealth status, while developing phased and progressive steps of growing autonomy toward independence as was done with the United States’ former colonial possessions of Cuba, the Philippines, etc.
- Negotiate through the United Nations to be recognized as part of the Compact of Free Association with the United States, an international agreement by which the United States government is obligated “to promote the development of the people of the Trust Territory toward self-government or independence as appropriate to the particular circumstances of the Trust Territory and its peoples and the freely expressed wishes of the peoples concerned.”
We therefore advocate a popular referendum on independence once the people of California have had adequate time and reflection to embrace the benefits of independence. Should the people of California choose to support independence for the California Republic, we call upon the elected representatives of California to move with all deliberate speed to implement that decision and work with our neighbors to assure a peaceful and smooth transition.
All persons born in California shall become California nationals, eligible for California citizenship should they desire it. No person shall ever be forced to accept the Californian citizenship to which they are entitled, nor should any person lose their United States citizenship or immigration status as a result of independence. California nationals serving in the Armed Forces of the United States will also immediately be eligible for California citizenship.
California Permanent Residents who have maintained residency in California for no less than 5 years shall also be deemed as eligible for California citizenship. California residents who have lived here continuously for 1 year at the time of independence will be eligible for permanent residency and become eligible for citizenship after 5 years.
We call for a new national constitutional convention to be held within six months of a successful vote for independence by the people of California. A delegation shall be sent from each county as well as Californian First Nations to this convention with the goal of creating the legal framework and delineation of powers to form a new national government. This document will become the supreme law of the land if and when it is approved by 60% of the citizens of California.
Our new national government will thereby become limited to certain denoted powers which shall be determined at the constitutional convention and which shall be considerably circumscribed compared to the coercive federalism which has defined United States government policy since at least the middle of the 20th century.
On The Military
We believe that the Republic of California’s military needs can best be served through a highly organized national militia with a core professional army, based on the Swiss model, wherein the people of California are the military. This model will save us many billions of dollars per year, build a sense of national pride and identity, and ensure our defense.
All citizens will be expected to register for military service upon turning 18. This militia will be run similarly to the current national guard, in which citizen-soldiers undergo basic training and then will be required to attend specific short training exercises on a periodic basis. Persons who object to military service on religious or moral grounds may serve in a civilian peace corps instead. Citizens with physical disabilities preventing service in the field will have the option to serve in other capacities or in the peace corps. After the age of 20 all citizens will be expected to report for 2 weeks out of every year for training and service. This service will be paid. Hardship will allow deferment but the time must be made up as soon as the hardship has ended.
California will maintain a small professional military, made up of the best of the best, who want to make a career out of military service. This cadre of experienced professional soldiers will form the core of our national military should we need to mobilize on a large scale to defend ourselves. The professional military forces will include naval, air, and ground forces.
The California National Party supports maintaining friendly relations with the United States based on the principles of cooperation and supporting the goals of economic growth and the common defense. California will enter mutual defense treaties with other nations but will not participate in military interventions.
Accordingly, the California National Party supports entering into military base agreements, which are known as Status of Force Agreements, with the United States whereby American military installations located in California may be leased to the United States, unrestricted and at no-cost, for 25 years with final terms to be negotiated. After the 25 year period has elapsed, a reasonable use fee for the land and airspace under lease will be introduced.