Utah Rep. Paul Ray would like nothing more than the liberals in California to secede from the union. Good for him, but that is a short-sighted view for a number of reasons. Economically, California has one of the largest GDPs in the world, at over $2.4 trillion (per PolitiFact). While much of this economic prowess is from Silicon Valley, California also serves as a valuable logistics point for many companies shipping to and from the U.S.

Strategically, California has key military bases for every branch of the military. The state is also the home base for the entire Pacific fleet. Replacing these would cost billions of dollars and decades of work. While I know California has very different politics than Utah, it serves an important role of reliably sending liberals to D.C., which should encourage compromise and deliberation in Congress. The reality may fall short of the ideal, but that is how we should, as citizens, demand the system work.

Finally, we fought as a nation the single costliest war the United States has ever fought to settle the question of secession. Going back on over a century of precedent, just because you don’t like liberal policies, is short-sighted. Love them or hate them, I believe that California should be here to stay.

Landon TroesterMurray