Hey, Texplainer: Britain vote to leave the europe Union. Deserve to Texas secede from the united States?

through Aneri Pattani June 24, 20163 PM central


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Hey, Texplainer: Britain voted to leaving the european Union. Deserve to Texas secede from the joined States?

In the wake up of Britain’s historical vote to leave the european Union — nicknamed the "Brexit" — speculation of a Texit ~ above the horizon has cropped up when again. The secessionist movement has a long history in theLone Star State. Delegates for the Texas Republican Party even recently debated adding secessionist language to the party"s platform. Butis it actually legal for Texas to leave the united States?

Simply put, the prize is no. Historical and also legal precedents make it clear that Texas could not pull off a Texit — at least not legally.

“The legality the seceding is problematic,” stated Eric McDaniel, associate professor of federal government at the university of Texas in ~ Austin. “The Civil war played a very large role in establishing the strength of the federal government and cementing that the federal government has the final say in this issues.”


Many historians believethat once the Confederacy surrendered at Appomattox in 1865, the idea of secession was likewise defeated, follow to McDaniel. The Union’s victory collection a precedent that states can not legitimate secede.

It is also important to note that the european Union is a loosened association the compound says with pre-existing protocols because that a nation to exit. In contrast, the U.S. Constitution includes procedures because that admitting brand-new states into the nation, yet none because that a state come leave.

Yet the myth the Texas can easilysecede persists, in part, since of the state’s history of independence.

Texas asserted independence from Mexico in 1836 and spent the next nine years as its very own nation. Whilethe young country"s leadersfirst expressed interest in becoming a state in 1836, the Republic that Texas go not join the United states until 1845, as soon as Congress approved the share Resolution for linking Texas come the unified States.

This resolution, i m sorry stipulated that Texas could, in the future, choose to divide itself right into "New states of convenient size not exceeding 4 in number, in addition to claimed State of Texas"is often a cause of confusion around the state’s capacity to secede. But the language of the resolution is clear: Texas can split itself into five brand-new states. It says nothing of separating apart native the united States.

In the years after Texas joined the union, tensions end slavery and also states’ rights mounted.A state convention in 1861 vote 166 to 8 in donate of secession — a measure that was then validated by a famous vote, do Texas the saturday state to secede native the Union.


After the civil War, Texas to be readmitted to the Union in 1870.

“If there was any type of constitutional concern resolved by the polite War, it is that there is no best to secede.”— Antonin Scalia, late can be fried Court Justice

Yet even prior to Texas official rejoined the nation, the U.S. Supreme Court asserted that secession was no legal, and also thus, even throughout the rebellion, Texas ongoing to be a state. In the 1869 case Texas v. White, the Court hosted that separation, personal, instance states could not unilaterally secede from the Union and also that the action of the insurgent Texas legislature — even if validated by a bulk of Texans — to be "absolutely null."

If there were any doubt staying after that, late supreme Court righteousness Antonin Scalia set it to rest an ext than a century laterwith his response to a letter from a screenwriterin 2006 asking if there is a legal basis for secession.

“The price is clear,” Scalia wrote. “If over there was any type of constitutional issue resolved by the civil War, that is the there is no right to secede. (Hence, in the Pledge that Allegiance, "one Nation, indivisible.")”

Bottom line: when Brexit may have actually stirred the secessionist pot,a similarTexit would certainly not it is in legal.Texas has actually a distinctive right among states to split itself into five states however not to secede from the United states of America.

Disclosure: The college of Texas in ~ Austin has been a financial support of The Texas Tribune.A finish list of Tribune donors and also sponsors have the right to be viewedhere.

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