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Texas secessionists fail to break away from US

Delegates clap after the National Anthem at the Republican Party of Texas State Convention at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center, Thursday, May 12, 2016 in Dallas, Texas.

Secessionists in the US state of Texas have tried and failed to insert into the state Republican Party's official platform language supporting “independence from the United States.”

A committee of Texas GOP leaders on Thursday narrowly threw out drafted language in the party platform that supported a referendum on Texas leaving the union.

The Texas Nationalist Movement has been leading the effort for 10 years to get the referendum on a ballot, and the president of the group said he won't give up.

“We want Texas to become an independent state. It's not that far-fetched of an idea,” said Daniel Miller, the group's president.

“This idea that people have the right of self-determination and places like Texas can assert their right of self-determination and become independent nation states is not that odd at all,” he added.

Miller compared the idea of a Texas secession to Scotland's independence referendum in 2014 — which did not pass after voters decided that Scotland should not be an independent country from the UK.

Miller said he believes it's important for Texans to have a right to vote on the issue, adding that the idea is gaining momentum since its inception 10 years ago.

The idea of a secession is not a new idea in Texas. At a 2009 rally, former Texas Governor Rick Perry did not rule out Texas seceding if the federal government did not change its fiscal policies.

“There's a lot of different scenarios,” Perry said at the time. “We've got a great union. There's absolutely no reason to dissolve it. But if Washington continues to thumb their nose at the American people, you know, who knows what might come out of that. But Texas is a very unique place, and we're a pretty independent lot to boot.”

In 2012, there was a petition that called on the White House to allow Texas to withdraw from the union. The White House responded, writing back that it would not let political debate to tear the country apart.

Miller said that he plans to continue his fight for secession; that this is just the beginning. “We're very optimistic,” he said. “We're pretty excited.”

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