Interest in secession movements grows on Facebook

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As calls for secession among anti-Trump activists capture national attention, secession movements that existed before the results of the presidential election were clear are gaining new online followers by the day.

Several Facebook pages dedicated to a California secession are particularly seeing growing interest. Groups including the Yes California Independence Campaign, the California National Party, and Californians For Independence have experienced striking growth since the results of the presidential election were announced on November 9.

The largest campaign, Yes California, nearly doubled its number of Facebook followers over the course of several days. On November 8, the page had 11,437 likes from American users; By November 11, the page had 21,048 likes from users in the United States, Vocativ discovered. The other pages dedicated to California similarly saw dramatic spikes in new followers.

More Sharp Rise In Calls For Secession As Trump Claims Victory

Interest in independence is also surfacing in other states. Some residents of the Pacific Northwest are demanding independence. Cascadia, a "bio-region" composed of Oregon, Washington, and parts of British Columbia, saw a spike in new followers on Facebook since Election Day. The region's largest movement in terms of Facebook followers, CascadiaNow, added thousands of new likes since November 8, a Vocativ analysis showed. An effort and website called Yes Cascadia was also established, seemingly as a political offshoot of CascadiaNow.

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University of California, Davis students protest in Davis, California, U.S. following the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Max Whittaker
Police detain a protester marching against president-elect Donald Trump in Oakland, California, U.S., November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Noah Berger
Protesters against president-elect Donald Trump march peacefully through Oakland, California, U.S., November 9, 2016. A separate group earlier in the night set fire to garbage bins and smashed multiple windows. REUTERS/Noah Berger
University of California, Davis students protest on campus in Davis, California, U.S. following the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Max Whittaker
University of California, Davis students protest on campus in Davis, California, U.S. following the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Max Whittaker
Oakland police officers chase a group of about 50 protesters against president-elect Donald Trump in Oakland, California, U.S., November 9, 2016. Members of the group set fire to garbage bins and broke multiple windows. REUTERS/Noah Berger
Protesters against president-elect Donald Trump march through Oakland, California, U.S., November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Noah Berger
University of California, Davis students sit in an intersection during a protest in Davis, California, U.S. following the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Max Whittaker
A woman passes burning garbage during a demonstration in Oakland, California, U.S. following the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Noah Berger
Students gather in Malcom X Plaza at San Francisco State University in San Francisco, California, U.S. following the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Stephen Lam
Students embrace each other during a demonstration at San Francisco State University in San Francisco, California, U.S. following the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Stephen Lam
Students chant as they demonstrate at San Francisco State University in San Francisco, California, U.S. following the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Stephen Lam
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Outside the West Coast, the Second Vermont Republic and the Foundation for New Hampshire Independence also saw boosts in the number of new Facebook likes since Tuesday, although online support for those groups is minimal.

Despite any increased interest, however, an actual act of secession seems impossible. In 1861, when Texans wanted to secede from the United States, the Supreme Court decided states can't do so unilaterally. "The legality of seceding is problematic," Eric McDaniel, an associate professor of government at the University of Texas at Austin, told The Texas Tribune earlier this year after Britain decided to leave the E.U. "The Civil War played a very big role in establishing the power of the federal government and cementing that the federal government has the final say in these issues."

A constitutional law professor at the University of Pennsylvania also told the San Francisco Chronicle that a California secession is "not realistic." An amendment to the Constitution would be needed to establish legal framework for a state to secede, Kermit Roosevelt said.

The post Interest In Secession Movements Grows On Facebook appeared first on Vocativ.

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