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A ‘national divorce’ would destroy red states. Let’s count the ways.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene’s proposed “national divorce” would absolutely crush conservative states.


Marjorie Taylor Greene is still in our lives and providing her unique brand of national embarrassment and tomfoolery.  

But things are different now. 

She is part of the House majority and a member of the Homeland Security Committee’s majority

A member who wants to split the homeland apart. 

On Tuesday, she told Fox News’ Sean Hannity: “The last thing I ever want to see in America is a civil war. No one wants that — at least everyone I know would never want that — but it’s going that direction, and we have to do something about it.”

Those comments doubled-down on her call for secession — made on Presidents Day, no less, when she tweeted: “We need a national divorce. We need to separate by red states and blue states and shrink the federal government.” 

She added: “Everyone I talk to says this. From the sick and disgusting woke culture issues shoved down our throats to the Democrat’s traitorous America Last policies, we are done.”

At the risk of taking Marge seriously — which is always a potential intellectual hazard — let’s just play this out for a hot minute, shall we?

First of all, the last time Southerners like Marge proposed a national divorce, it was because they were holding 4 million African Americans hostage as slaves ... and didn’t want to let them go. 

Today, roughly half of African Americans still live in the 11 Southern states that comprised the Confederacy, and so if this national divorce happened, they would be trapped in an apartheid hellscape of a new country with zero health care, crappy public schools, barely a right to vote, and a full return to ownership by someone else of their bodies — except this time it wouldn’t just be Black women, it would be all women

And their leader would be someone like the gal who once said: “If I were Black people today and I walked by one of those statues, I would be so proud because I’d say look how far I have come in this country.”

So a full return to the status quo, pre-13th Amendment. Yeah, that’s a no. You’re not locking our folks in the rubber room with you, lady.

But that doesn’t mean America isn’t divided — because it is, deeply so — and has been for most of this nation’s history. Red America and blue America are in many ways already two countries. 

As political strategist Michael Podhorzer explains: The United States is “more like a federated republic of two nations: Blue Nation and Red Nation. ... It is a geographic and historical reality.”

That divide, he writes, is very similar, both geographically and culturally, to the divides between the Union and the Confederacy.

But here’s where things get interesting: Being a pro-Confederate red state isn’t just bad for the soul — but for the economy. Based off Podhorzer’s analysis, the blue nation contributes more of the total U.S. gross national product: 46% vs. 40%.

On its own, the blue nation would be the world’s second-largest economy, trailing only China. The red nation would rank third.

And if there was a national divorce, what would red America do for industry, given that many of its economies are dependent on blue state manufacturers who utilize red state nonunion labor to manufacture their goods more cheaply? 

If red America was merely a competitor to other low-wage manufacturing countries, they’d have to continually reduce wages in order to compete.

And based on the way individual red state economies like Mississippi, Kentucky and West Virginia operate now, they would be a nation of largely impoverished workers ruled by a small oligarchy of the very rich, with no health care, scant voting rights, and no autonomy for women.

They’d likely be largely dependent on oil and natural gas revenues, which are in diminishing supply. And that would mean they’d also be an ecological disaster, which would mean they’d probably need lots of national aid ... from blue America.

As evidence? Currently, most red states pay less into the federal tax coffers than they take out. So would the new red republic expect the blue states to pay alimony and child support in this “national divorce”?

Just a few reasons the whole idea is implausible. Another one?

We’re not actually divided by states. The reality is, we are a nation not divided by states, but rather by counties. It’s one reason Marjorie Taylor Greene calling for secession isn’t just inconceivable as well as foolish, it would be disastrous for Republican-voting states.

This is an excerpt from Wednesday’s episode of the “The ReidOut.” It has been slightly edited for length and clarity.