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White House: NC, other states must remain part of US

Posted January 14, 2013
Updated January 15, 2013

— Bad news for thousands of people who wanted to see North Carolina, Texas and other states secede: They are still in the U.S.

The White House has responded to petitions from people in 10 states asking that they be allowed to break away from the country, saying the Founding Fathers who created the nation "did not provide a right to walk away from it."

More than 25,000 people signed each petition, which were created a few days after President Barack Obama won re-election. The White House has promised to respond to any petition that gets that many signatures within 30 days.

Jon Carson, director of the White House Office of Public Engagement, issued a response quoting Abraham Lincoln's first inaugural address and a Supreme Court opinion after the Civil War. It said America was created as a "perpetual union," but one that allows people with different beliefs to debate the issues.

"Democracy can be noisy and controversial," Carson said. "Free and open debate is what makes this country work. ... But as much as we value a healthy debate, we don't let that debate tear us apart."

The petitions said the federal government didn't share the same values held by the Founding Fathers, but Carson argued that the writers of the U.S. Constitution addressed the need for policy change through elections, not secession.

Still, part of the response also suggested that people who signed the petitions be deported.

4 Comments

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  • djofraleigh Jan 16, 7:45 p.m.

    So when Obama's term is over, would they want to rejoin the union? -- comment

    States would leave for many reasons, mainly state's rights, but at heart would be greed. California could exist without the 49, as could Hawaii, Texas, Alaska; but most would join up in mutual economic interest. Imagine if the few citizens of the Dakotas, Wyoming, Montana could use the federal lands freely for timber, mining, oil and cattle!

    DC wants to be a state, but imagine New York City as a state, and the ten other biggest cities in the USA. Urban is already increasingly dominating national politics. Those more rural states are increasingly going to want self-rule. Why shouldn't they? Are they free or not?

  • djofraleigh Jan 16, 7:14 p.m.

    Of course states should be able to leave the union, if we are free and live in states. It should not be done lightly or able to be done quickly, and a state leaving the union should have to pay back for anything kept. I'm against any state leaving, but freedom means something. If not free to form one's own government, then why not drop "STATES" from our name and say STATE?

    If state rights were allowed, it should not be a question of leaving. 600,000 Americans died to decide this question in the 19th century, and it might come to that again. Maine could easily join with Canada which itself narrowly voted not to have Quebed leave it. Southern Florida and Cuba might one day join, and souther California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas might join Mexico. The some great basin states could join Canada.

    Essentially, today, the USA is a workplace with porous borders.

  • kmt Jan 16, 11:23 a.m.

    So when Obama's term is over, would they want to rejoin the union? All of this for one president. If this isn't race-related, please tell me what is. I don't remember people acting this way over Bush, and he was by far the worst president. Obama spent his first term cleaning up Clinton and Bush's mess. He did a fine job. Everyone tying unemployment to his performance, but he can't make these snobby rich owners hire more people.

    If Romney would've won, we would be right back at war. Yes it would have stabilized the economy because that's what war is for. Thank the founding fathers and this great concept of capitalism for that.

  • westernwake1 Jan 15, 7:10 p.m.

    Can we give a few of these states away?

    You know, let them cede and become part of Mexico or Cuba or something. I have a list of states I would like to volunteer.