A senior member of the state Duma, Russia’s parliament, said that any U.S. state wanting to leave the country and join the Russian Federation would be considered.
The comments come only a week after Russia declared that four regions of Ukraine had become Russian territory, following referendums widely criticized by Ukrainian and Western officials as being sham. These were Donetsk and Luhansk in eastern Ukraine and Kherson and Zaporizhzhia in the south. According to Russia, the votes supported the regions changing from Ukrainian to Russian territory. Russian State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin and other deputies applauded during the voting on the annexation of four Ukrainian regions on October 3, 2022, in Moscow.
State Duma deputy Alexander Tolmachev responded to an online poll that showed that some Americans wanted their states to break free from the U.S.
If Americans vote to secede some states from the country and express a desire to join Russia, Moscow will consider it, Tolmachev told Russian news site Podmoskovye Segodnya.
The lawmaker said that the U.S. was beginning “to decay” and that its ally, the European Union, which has also provided strong military assistance to Ukraine, was “bursting at its seams.”
Tolmachev said this was a result of a failed American foreign policy. Such initiatives signal that the citizens of the United States are dissatisfied with their leadership and are ready to take extreme measures, up to secession, if the current policy of America continues, he said. Mosregtoday.ru also reported the news, noting that some 80 percent of New Hampshire residents on social media said they wanted to break away from the United States.
The social media poll commented, “Most of Oregon wants to leave Oregon. I support the big Idaho movement. And so should the people living in Texas, Florida, Idaho, and everywhere.”
However, some opposition to secession from the U.S. on social media. It is important that voting takes place not on social networks but officially and legitimately, as in the Crimea, Sevastopol, Donetsk and Luhansk republics, Zaporizhzhia, and Kherson provinces, Tolmachev said, referring to online polls.
According to Cynthia Nicoletti, a law professor at the University of Virginia School of Law, state secession is unconstitutional. States can’t unilaterally secede from the U.S.; she told Newsweek. This was established both by the outcome of our Civil War and by the Supreme Court in the 1869 case Texas v. White. Article I, section 10 of the Constitution also prohibits states from entering into alliances, treaties, or confederations.
She said that she supposes. Theoretically, it’s an open question whether a state could secede with the consent of Congress or all the other states. There’s some throwaway language about the possibility of all states agreeing to allow one state to secede in Lincoln’s First Inaugural Address and Texas v. White, Nicoletti added. But even if Russia was proposing that, it’s not a realistic scenario, she said.
It is the second time Russia has suggested parts of the U.S. become part of its territory. Russian officials demanded the return of Alaska to Russia in late February 2022 as “reparations” for the economic damage caused by sanctions over the attack on Ukraine. The Alaska Governor responded with, “Good Luck With That.”