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The new episode of revisionist history claims that Texas can split parts of itself into four other states, at most, leaving five Texan states altogether.

The basis for this reasoning can be found in the opening of the Let's Mess With Texas Essay by Vasan Kesavan and Michael Stokes Paulsen:

hey

Which they say is from:

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Could Texas really split off four other states from itself right now?

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    This looks more like a legal question of whether there is an existing law or constitutional provision for splitting Texas, than a political question of who supports/opposes it and why. – Paul Johnson May 22 '18 at 9:10
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    Perhaps I’m asking this in the wrong place to begin with, but this does have a huge political bearing on it. “Texas” could effectively change their number of senators from 2 to 10 by annexing our four new states. – user3306356 May 22 '18 at 12:14
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it belongs on Law.SE or is speculative, the way it is written – user4012 May 22 '18 at 12:26
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    @user3306356: There is the legal question, which is better on Law.SE, and there are political issues. If you want to ask about the politics then you will need to say what political question you are asking. Right now your question is a legal one. – Paul Johnson May 22 '18 at 12:44
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    Any state can split into substates with congressional approval (per article IV of the Constitution). The question here is whether Texas can split without congressional approval. – Bobson May 22 '18 at 15:09
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No

The Texas Annexation is already spread across Texas and four other states: New Mexico, Oklahoma (the panhandle), Kansas, and Colorado. Texas is the only one that looks to be wholly formed from the annexation territory, but the other four include parts of such land. As such, there is no remaining right to split Texas. They've already been split as much as specified in the Joint Resolution for Annexing Texas to the United States.

Map of the Texas Annexation shown over modern borders

From Wikipedia. The full size version of that map actually shows the Texas Annexation stretching into a sixth state, Wyoming.

But there's a way

If Congress and the Texas legislature agree, Texas could split. This is just to say that there is no remaining split from the original resolution. That split has already occurred. Any additional split would be new and in addition to the split specified previously.

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  1. That law will depend on if any further law has stopped or prevented that. That would only be appropriate for the law stackexchange.

  2. Any law that exists can be undone. We've witnessed this in the US multiple times in the last few decades. There's even an amendment (21) that repeals an earlier amendment (18). Outside the US, empires have stopped existing or broken apart (Soviet Union) so this could happen again anywhere and in states too.

  3. If you ever visit Texas, you'll observe they tend to fly their own flag a lot. In fact, they fly it more than many countries I've been too and they fly their flag more than the most of the rest of America flies the American flag. Like it or not, they have a unified identity as Texans. It's hard to imagine a world where a unified group of people like this would break into four states being a part of one state. Impossible? No. Unlikely. Probably for now.

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