What is the 51st State?

South CaliforniaIf you are wondering what the 51st State is, I am sorry to tell you that there isn’t one as of yet. In the future there may be 51st or even a 52nd states, but for now there are exactly 50.

There are many plans to add a 51st state. In California alone there have been over 220 separate attempts to split California into more than one state. A recent trend in the news is a group of people moving toward separating California into two separate states. They would be called “North California” and “South California.” Currently, they are debating as to where the diving line should be drawn. Reasons such as water distribution, major cities, local wealth, farmlands, and many other factors make the decision of where the border should lie very difficult.

Another proposed 51st state is Puerto Rico. Technically, Puerto Ricans have been citizens of the United States for nearly 100 years, but they are still not recognized at a state. All natural-born Puerto Ricans are officially citizens of the U.S. but are unable to vote for the position of president. Becoming a state would obviously give them full voting rights and rights to all other privileges in which states enjoy.

As a third major example of a proposed fifty-first state, I would like to bring up the proposed state of Jefferson. This state would take up the northern part of California and the southern part of Oregon. It would be about 70,000 acres big. The idea of Jefferson first arose in the 1940s when northern Californians were sick and tired of their legislatures ignoring their needs, such as new roads. When it began, the idea of Jefferson was more of a publicity stunt, but, as time went on, the cause gained traction. There are still many supporters of the Jefferson movement around today.

And last (for this article anyways), but not least, many believe that Washington DC should become the fifty-first state. The only large concentration of people who are in support for making Washington DC a state are the residents of Washington DC. Others see this as just giving congress additional votes, making them more powerful and influential. While this may be a dramatization, the idea holds true.

It is clear that there are many possibilities as to what the next state may be. It may be North California, South California, Puerto Rico, Jefferson, or some other yet to be name state. A fifty-first state may never even exist. So if you were wondering what the 51st state is, now you know that there are only 50 so far, but there may be more to come.