Plan to Split California Fails to Make Ballot
But millionaire backer is challenging that ruling
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 13, 2014 10:54 AM CDT
Silicon Valley venture capitalist Tim Draper presents his license for identification as he turns in boxes of petitions for his ballot initiative this week. The state says he fell short.   (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

(Newser) – California looks destined to remain one big state instead of six smaller ones. A Silicon Valley venture capitalist failed to collect enough signatures to qualify his "Six Californias" plan as a ballot initiative in November 2016, reports the LA Times. Tim Draper, who poured more than $5 million of his own money into the petition drive, needed 807,615 signatures, but California's secretary of state determined that he has closer to 750,000, reports the San Jose Mercury News. Draper's not giving up yet, though.

His campaign collected 1.1 million signatures, and the state conducted a random sample of 54,000 of them to determine validity. From that, it projected the 750,000 total, which Draper thinks is way low. "We are confident that a full check of the signatures would confirm that fact," he says, adding that his team would review the signatures deemed invalid. In fact, he says the ruling "is yet another example of the dysfunction of the current system and reinforces the need for six fresh, modern governments." An opponent has another view: “Six Californias was a solution in search of a problem," says a former Assembly speaker.