Why Texas Should Have the Legal Right to Secede From the Union

And so should every other state

J.C. Peters
4 min readDec 14, 2020
Texas flag map
Texas flag map. Source: Anon Moos based on image by Darwinek

Texas Republican Party Chair Allen West made waves Friday by floating the idea of secession after the Supreme Court threw out a Texas lawsuit aimed at overturning the results of the presidential election.

Commenting on the decision, West said: “Perhaps law-abiding states should bond together and form a Union of states that will abide by the Constitution.”

The remark drew immediate rebuke from Democrats and some Republicans, who bristled that both the outcome of the Civil War and a Supreme Court decision from 1869 established that secession from the union was illegal.

Adam Kinzinger, Republican Rep. from Illinois and frequent Trump critic, for instance, said: “My guy Abraham Lincoln and the Union soldiers already told you no,” which, to be honest, sounds a lot like a mobster husband reminding his wife what happened the last time she told him she was filing for divorce.

In 2012, in response to a petition asking to grant Texas the right to secede from the Union, the White House responded similarly, saying that the Civil War “vindicated the principle that the Constitution establishes a permanent union between the States.” I’m sure every dictator who ever suppressed an insurgence…



J.C. Peters

Author of History That Changed the World (Odyssea Publishing, 2017). Published in the Philadelphia Inquirer, on CNBC, The Hill, Quartz, and other media.