Calexit Congress to function as legislative body of California Independence Movement

YesCalifornia president Marcus Ruiz Evans will formally establish a congress at the organization’s weekly meeting today. This Calexit Congress will comprise of Californians who support independence from the United States and will meet regularly to discuss and vote on the agenda, set the strategy, and determine the future of the Calexit movement. The quasi-legislative body will also be delegated the power to determine how the organization’s donations are spent.

The move comes as YesCalifornia moves to reorganize as a registered 527 tax-exempt organization, commonly known as a political action committee, and to further establish other 501c non-profit affiliate organizations.

“This will give the people of California various avenues to pursue the policies that are in their interest. We plan to educate the public on issues of California history, how California became a state, and how that status has affected and continues to affect the lives of the people of this state. We plan to run advocacy campaigns, lobby for the passage or defeat of legislation that is related to our mission to reassert the sovereignty of this state. Generally speaking, we plan to engage in various forms of political and educational activity. The IRS has categories under which we plan to organize for each and all of these objectives,” said Marcus Ruiz Evans, the organization’s president.

The president of YesCalifornia, the umbrella organization representing and speaking for groups across the state that support California independence, a “Calexit”, said he has heard some of the concerns of its supporters across the state regarding organizational issues and transparency. Mr. Evans also boasted how new members continue to pour in.

“We went from establishing a Board of Directors to a Board of Trustees because so many people wanted to be involved and we recognized we couldn’t have a Board with fifty Directors. So we toyed with the idea of establishing a Board of Trustees to whom decisions regarding donations and funds would be entrusted, and yet again we ran into the same problem. Each week we see more and more interest and that’s when we came up with the idea of establishing a Congress. The Americans had the Continental Congress. We now have the Calexit Congress.”

The growth, Mr. Evans points out, is even after Joe Biden was elected president of the United States.

“Californians are relieved that Donald Trump is no longer the president of the United States, but so are the people of Germany, so are the people of France, so are many people around the world,” says Louis J. Marinelli, a co-founder of the California independence movement who came up with the plan for the Calexit Congress. “Californians share this sense of relief with those around the world who reject the ideology and policies of the Trump Administration. But that doesn’t mean Californians see Joe Biden as some kind of savior who will fix the institutional and systematic problems that are the foundation of the Calexit movement, which I might remind you we started back in 2014 when Barack Obama was president.”

For the time being, the membership of the Calexit Congress is open, meaning anyone can join and become a delegate. However, the Congress is expected to begin convening regularly to establish its own rules and procedures for how it shall function. It will also establish committees to allow its members to delve into issues of personal interest and importance. Overall, the Calexit Congress will issue resolutions approved by the whole body that set the course for the California independence movement and decide how donations are spent, as well as which candidates are endorsed or fielded.

The YesCalifornia bylaws will include provisions that delegate these powers and responsibilities to the Calexit Congress, decisions of which will be executed by YesCalifornia’s executive board, of which Marcus Ruiz Evans remains president. Evans and Marinelli hope the two entities function and work together like the legislative and executive branches of government, and that its resolutions and decisions are published, as were the papers of the Continental Congress.

COVID-19 proves the possibility of secession given the right circumstances

If we had told you last year that a virus out of China would spread around the world and infect hundreds of thousands (a number that is still growing by the day) and kill tens of thousands (and number that is still growing by the day) around the world, fostering a race for face masks and toilet paper, closing schools, bars, restaurants across the state, leaving places like downtown Los Angeles and the Santa Monica Pier empty and abandoned, and people quarantined in their homes with statewide orders to stay there, you would have said that we’ve been watching too many episodes of The Walking Dead.

And yet that is the world we find ourselves in today. Most recent figures show that over 6,000 of our fellow Californians have been infected by the virus, resulting in deaths in 24 California counties. Recently, even though this crisis seems far from over, and even though the threat to public health and the lives of 40 million Californians has not abated, President Trump began floating the idea of reopening the economy, in a move that would have been counterproductive to the goal of flattening the curve.

Luckily, President Trump has scrapped those plans (for now), announcing that federal guidelines to curb the spread of COVID-19 are to be extended until at least April 30. But the very fact that the American president seriously considered the option of reopening the economy demonstrates that secession is an entirely viable option given the right circumstances.

Imagine if you will, that President Trump had decided to reopen the US economy. This decision would have naturally spurred human activity, the immediate result of which would have been to foster an environment where more Californians would become infected by COVID-19, many of which dying as a result. The decision, if taken by the president, would have literally killed an unknown number of Californians.

It’s curious because President Trump floated a completely different idea regarding the tri-state region of New Jersey, New York, and Connecticut. Recently he spoke of establishing a federal quarantine of the region, which has been hit hard by COVID-19 cases. The idea, whether good or not, was met by harsh resistance from the New York Governor, who doubted its legality and even compared such a move to a federal declaration of war” on New York

Back here in California, President Trump’s decision to keep the economy essentially shut down (for now) is certainly being met with a sigh of relief. People need to stay home to flatten the curve. Now is not the time for bustling city streets. Nevertheless, the idea of that possibility lingers which is why the Calexit Campaign fully agrees with sociology profession Jim Glynn of Madera, who recently suggested in an opinion piece for his local paper that, “On the same date that Trump declares an end to COVID-19 precautions, California announces that the state secedes from the union.”

Again, it is not such a far-fetched idea. Given the right circumstances and the proper motivation, fueled by poor federal leadership or no leadership at all, states such as California, or others, ought to take matters into their own hands. A relevant case is Florida, which has set up checkpoints at its border with Georgia and Alabama, checking motorists arriving from other US states and directing those who had been in the New York or Louisiana regions to self-isolate in quarantine. Texas and Rhode Island are expected to follow suit this week. 

If we had told you a year ago that motorists crossing the Florida-Georgia border would be questioned by Florida state troopers on whether they had been in New York, you would not have believed us. Yet that is the world we are living in today. Maybe it is time for California to take back control of its borders, too, as an independent country.

YesCalifornia to once again give California independence an international platform

The YesCalifornia Calexit Campaign earlier this month accepted an invitation to the third Dialogue of Nations conference set to take place in Donetsk, Ukraine.

The conference, which is being organized by the Donetsk People’s Republic, is set to take place April 29-30 and will include representatives from independence-seeking peoples from around the world coming together to discuss self-determination, a multipolar world, and to establish a working group on creating a collective appeal to the United Nations with a request to ensure unhindered compliance and implementation of human rights such as the right to self-determination.

“We attended this conference before and by doing so we gave an international platform to millions of Californians who believe in an independent California Republic – a platform they had never been given in the United States. In accepting this new invitation, we intend to once again bring the cause of California independence to an international audience,” Marcus Ruiz Evans, YesCalifornia’s president said.

“In response to our participation at the previous Dialogue of Nations conference which took place in Moscow, American media painted our organization as a Russian-backed, Kremlin-funded organization doing the bidding of Vladimir Putin. However, last year the State of California investigated YesCalifornia and even subpoenaed our bank records and closed their investigation stating that the allegations lodged against us had been disproven,” Evans said.

The organization said it is now emboldened and will unapologetically accept a platform to bring international attention to the cause of California independence at the upcoming conference in Donetsk. “It’s really perfect timing – this summer in anticipation of Donald Trump being re-elected president, we will be preemptively filing for an independence referendum so that it is cleared for signature circulation the day after Election Day.”

“At this conference, we intend to lay out the case for California independence, the plan to achieve California independence, and the legality of our actions for the whole world to see,” Evans said, adding that he intends to deliver remarks remotely if technically possible and correct the historical record on a number of myths propagated by American media.

“When American media talk about Calexit, they like to talk about Louis Marinelli, the organization’s previous president, who now lives in Russia and who has not been actively participating in the campaign for three years. They do this to tie our campaign to Russia. But what they conveniently fail to say is that I, Marcus Ruiz Evans, a native of California, founded this movement with Louis back in 2014 and have been leading it since 2017.”

Meanwhile, Louis Marinelli, the permanent representative of the Independent Republic of California to Russia, will represent YesCalifornia (the only Calexit organization participating) in Donetsk at Mr. Evans’ request. “I am not an activist anymore. I prefer my new private life in Russia. However, Marcus and I have maintained our friendship and working relationship over the years and I have always been there for him when he has sought my advice or expertise. So again, I will be happy to step up to do what I can for a cause we both founded, we both strongly believe in, and for which we have both so passionately fought for.”

“I have always said the Calexit campaign has three campaigns: a state campaign for a referendum, a national campaign to get American support, and an international campaign to build international relationships with the hope of earning international recognition for an independent California one day. That was our goal when I spoke at the conference in 2016 in Moscow, and that continues to be our goal going into Donetsk in 2020,” Marinelli said in explaining his reemergence to speak at the conference.

“And for any Americans out there who have a problem with California separatists going to Donetsk, a republic described by American media as “occupied by Russia” which straddles the border of Ukraine and Russia, we quote former Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg: what would America do if it had a contiguous country and a lot of people in that country wanted to be Americans. Does California ring a bell? We just went and took it,” Marinelli said.

Government watchdog: allegations against Yes California disproven

The Yes California Independence Campaign has been cleared of wrongdoing by the California State Government’s Fair Political Practices Commission.

In 2018, the Commission launched an investigation into anonymous allegations filed against Yes California. The campaign reviewed the allegations and returned a thorough and comprehensive point-by-point response to the State objecting to and rebutting them.

Specifically, the allegations claimed that Yes California and its founders “laundered political contributions”, “failed to report any and all contributions and expenditures”, “failed to register either with the Federal Election Commission or the California Election Commission as a “non-connected” (single issue) Political Action Committee”, that Yes California was used by its founders “as a pass-through false entity to their personal benefit”, and that the organization “laundered foreign contributions” from Russia.

As a part of the year-long investigation, the taxpayer-funded Commission subpoenaed the organization’s bank records and collected other relevant documentation. As a result of their investigation, the Commission concluded in a September 2019 letter addressed to Yes California that “we are closing this case without taking any enforcement action because the allegations have been disproven.”

A screenshot of the September 30, 2019 letter from the Fair Political Practices Commission.

For his part, Marcus Ruiz Evans said that the state’s investigation turned out to be a blessing in disguise, referring to persistent claims of wrongdoing and foreign backing of the Calexit campaign.

“You have to find the good in every situation – we can now point to the results of this state investigation when allegations of campaign finance violations from the 2016-2017 independence referendum campaign are made against Yes California. I remind you: these allegations were filed anonymously, by someone too cowardly to identify themselves. Although they denied us the right to face our accusers – a cornerstone of our democratic system – we still came out with a victory in the end, which frankly we knew would be the case right from the start.”