AUSTIN, Texas — On Tuesday, Texas Rep. Kyle Biedermann (R-Fredericksburg) filed House Bill 1359, otherwise known as the Texas Independence Referendum Act. If passed, it would allow Texans to vote on whether the Texas Legislature should create a joint interim committee to develop a plan for achieving Texas independence.
According to Biedermann, the bill is not a resolution to allow for immediate independence. Instead, it would give power to the people via referendum to allow the right to discuss, debate and vote on creating a path toward independence.
“This act simply lets Texans vote," said the Texas representative. "This decision is too big to be monopolized solely by the power brokers in our Capitol. We need to let Texans’ voices be heard! Voters of all political persuasions in Texas can agree on one thing, Washington, D.C., is and has been broken. Our federal government continuously fails our working families, seniors, taxpayers, veterans and small business owners. For decades, the promises of America and our individual liberties have been eroding. It is now time that the people of Texas are allowed the right to decide their own future. This is not a left or right political issue. Let Texans vote!"
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Biedermann stated he believes thousands of people are moving to the state every year to escape a "climate of over-regulation and taxation."
"Texas is seen as the bastion of freedom and a leader of free enterprise, which has built a robust economy, financial solvency and capacity for massive energy production worthy of the world stage," he said. "These are all indications that the Republic of Texas would not just survive but thrive as an independent nation. Now is the time for Texas to lead."
He has started a petition in support of Texas independence, which can be viewed here.
Similar bills filed in previous legislative sessions in the state have proven unsuccessful.
If Texas were to secede, it would be a massive legal feat.
Because of the Civil War, hundreds of thousands of people died in order to preserve the union. Ultimately, the war ended any serious talk about secessionist movements.
In 2019, KVUE spoke with University of Texas political science professor Eric McDaniel on the possibility. He said secession confusion comes from a misunderstanding of the state's original admission into the U.S.
According to the joint resolution for annexing Texas, Congress said Texas could break up into five states but all would have to be part of the U.S.
And another reason Texas cannot legally secede is because of the Supreme Court case Texas v. White. Even if the Texas legislature voted to secede, the action would be “absolutely null,” according to that Supreme Court case.
The U.S. Constitution also does not explicitly provide for the possibility of secession.
"The aspiration of the preamble is to create a more perfect union," added UT law professor Sanford Levinson. "Itself suggests that there can be no secession because, by definition, secession destroys the existing union rather than making it more perfect."
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