>> Is California too big? Residents of the Golden State will vote this fall in a proposal to split their state into three pieces. State officials giving the green light on Tuesday. Silicon Valley venture capitalist Tim Draper has been pushing the idea, gathering more than 700,000 signatures to put the question on the ballot.
His proposal would split California into three new states that are roughly equal in population. One including San Francisco in the northern part of the state, another made up of Los Angeles in the central coast, the third comprising San Diego and much of the agricultural heartland. They would get six seats in the US Senate, that's an increase from the two seats that California has now.
Draper and other backers argue that teachers' unions and other special interest groups have too much influence in the state legislature. Leading to a decline in schools and other government services.>> It's sort of rotting, California, when I grew up here, we were number one. Best place to do business, number one in education, number one all the way across the board, beautiful weather.
We still have the beautiful weather, but we're now 47th in education, we are the worst place to do business. You ever ask yourself, why are all the businesses leaving California?>> It would be the first state breakup since Virginia and West Virginia split during the Civil War. Opponents say it would be expensive and complicated, as residents would have to sort out how to divide the state university system, and water and transportation networks.
Now that the measure is on the ballot, supporters have to convince the state's 19 million registered voters that it's a good idea. And even if it passes, they still have to get approval from Congress. And lawmakers from other states might worry that this could dilute their influence on Capitol Hill.
So supporters have many hurdles ahead, but at least they've got the conversation started.