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Texas Newspaper Issues Warning About Secession


A Texas newspaper issued a warning on Saturday, which is also Texas Independence Day, about the state seceding from the United States as a number of Republican candidates for the Texas House of Representatives and other offices are showing support for it.

There has been growing interest in what would happen if Texas did vote to become an independent nation, as it was for nine years between declaring independence from Mexico in 1836 and joining the U.S. in 1845. Such calls have been intensified by tensions between authorities in Texas and the federal government over how to handle the influx of migrants crossing into the U.S. from the southern border.

Tensions surged after the Supreme Court ruled in late January in a 5-4 decision that federal agents can remove razor wire placed along the U.S.-Mexico border on the orders of Texas Governor Greg Abbott in a bid to reduce illegal immigration.

In response, Abbott said he was invoking “Texas’s constitutional authority to defend and protect itself” against what he described as an “invasion,” with 25 other Republican governors releasing a joint statement expressing their support for his position.

In an opinion piece published on Saturday titled, “Texas voters, beware of pro-secession candidates,” the Dallas Morning News‘ editorial board raised concerns over Republican candidates signing the “Take Texas Back” pledge.

“As Super Tuesday approaches, Republican primary voters in Texas should beware. A worrying number of candidates for the Texas House of Representatives and other offices have signed the ‘Take Texas Back’ pledge that makes them promise to advance legislation to help Texas secede from the United States under certain conditions,” the opinion piece read.

The “Take Texas Back” pledge asks candidates to promise that if elected, they will place the interests of Texas before any nation or political entity. By signing the pledge, candidates also promise to advance legislation to call for a referendum for Texans to assert their status as an independent nation, if a majority of residents are interested.

According to the newspaper, over 150 people have signed the pledge so far.

Newsweek has reached out to Abbott’s office via email for comment.

Texas Flag
The Texas flag is seen on October 21, 2023, in Houston, Texas. A Texas newspaper issued a warning on Saturday, which is also Texas Independence Day, about the state seceding from the United States as…


Tim Warner/Getty Images

The Dallas Morning News‘ editorial board also warned that the pledge of secession creates “sizable” challenges such as funding, as the “Take Texas Back” pledge does not identify how an independent Texas would run in the absence of federal funding.

“Candidates who sign the pledge also signal that they aren’t thinking far ahead about the real-life consequences of their statements. The website for the Take Back Texas pledge does not identify how an independent Texas would be funded in absence of federal money that currently comprises about 30% of our state’s budget. The practical challenges to establishing an independent nation are sizable and cannot be patched over with extreme rhetoric,” the opinion piece stated.

However, in response to the Dallas Morning News opinion article, Daniel Miller, president of the Texas Nationalist Movement (TNM), said in a statement emailed to Newsweek on Saturday afternoon that the newspaper’s editorial board “neglects a core issue” for the cause.

“The editorial’s alarm over the financial implications of Texas independence similarly betrays a lack of faith not just in Texas’ robust economy but in the very spirit of Texan innovation and resilience. The Lone Star State is not merely a participant in the federal system out of financial necessity but has thrived and contributed significantly to the union’s prosperity. The suggestion that Texas could not navigate the complexities of independence is not only baseless but underestimates the talent, resourcefulness, and determination of Texans. Our state is home to one of the most dynamic economies in the world, a testament to our hard work, entrepreneurial spirit, and commitment to freedom and self-determination,” Miller said.

He added: “In their haste to dismiss the movement for Texas independence, the Dallas Morning News Editorial Board neglects the core issues driving the support for such a cause: the desire for self-governance, the frustration with federal overreach, and the longing for a government that truly represents the values and interests of Texans. These are not fringe sentiments but deeply held beliefs shared by a significant portion of the Texas population, who deserve to have their voices heard and respected, not marginalized or mocked.”

According to its website, the TNM’s mission is to secure and protect the political, cultural, and economic independence of the nation of Texas.

Miller previously discussed the idea of secession on his Texas News podcast.

In the podcast episode released on January 30, Miller discussed the impact of the border dispute on his campaign for Texas independence or “Texit.” He argued Abbott’s policy is “in fact Texas standing up for our rights, the law and our sovereignty.”

However, others have warned against the move, stating that it would create funding issues.

“If Texas were to try to secede despite the fact that it is unconstitutional, it’s safe to say we’d be headed straight for a civil war,” Nicholas B. Creel, a business law professor at Georgia College & State University, previously told Newsweek. “As such, there is next to no way the federal government would send any money to the state itself.”

According to a poll carried out exclusively for Newsweek, Texans would vote to remain part of the U.S. if an independence referendum was held in the Lone Star State.

The survey, conducted by Redfield & Wilton Strategies, asked 814 eligible voters in Texas whether they would support the state leaving the American Union to become an independent country and how they would vote in a hypothetical secessionist referendum on this question. Overall, 39 percent were against secession, 33 percent supported it, while the rest neither supported nor opposed it or were unsure. However, in a hypothetical referendum, 67 percent would vote for Texas to remain a state within the U.S.