SACRAMENTO (CBS SF) – Representatives from two California Counties near the Oregon border plan to fight to form an independent state.

Residents of Modoc and Siskiyou counties were expected to submit declarations in Sacramento Thursday to formally withdraw from California. They’d like to form the 51st state known as Jefferson.

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The original plan to split off the rural states, which had its origins in the 1940s, would have them join with some southern Oregon counties to form Jefferson.

Also on the table is the Six States Initiative, which would divide the current California counties into smaller states. In that plan, Jefferson would stretch from the Oregon border south to Mendocino and then west to the Nevada border near Tahoe. Here’s a closer look at that plan:

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Backers of the declaration of independence say they aren’t sufficiently represented, and feel that much of the agenda in Sacramento has no bearing on life in their communities, which tend to vote more conservatively than coastal California. They say they’ll soon be joined by like-minded counties, and they don’t plan on waiting for the six states proposal to make the ballot.

Neither plan to split off counties in the near future seems likely because the formation of new states would require approval from the U.S. Congress, and would potentially shift the balance of power in Washington.



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