Skip to content
1481138421_putin-bear-big

Illustration: Steph Davidson

How to Make California Great: Secede, With a Little Help From Putin

A leader of ‘Calexit,’ the Golden State’s independence movement, sees Trump—and the Kremlin—as a boon.

It’s 1 p.m. in Yekaterinburg and midnight in Los Angeles when Louis Marinelli, the leader of a California movement to secede from the United States, sits down to lunch at the Double Bar & Grill.

Yekaterinburg is covered in snow and freezing at -4° C (25° F), balmy compared to -32° C the week before. Russia’s fourth-largest city, on the Siberian side of the Ural Mountains, is about as far as you can get from L.A. But the heart of the Yes California campaign beats here.