RICHFORD – The small town of Richford, VT, located on the northern border of the state and centered between interstate highways 89 and 91, has voted to leave the state, and the country, in a special election that took place this past Tuesday. Residents of the town had expressed frustration over the state of national politics, and with Vermont’s own economic and social policies, and the special election was meant to address those issues in particular.
“Honestly, I thought it was mostly a joke,” said Richford Town Clerk and Treasurer Alan E. Fletcher. “Everyone was complaining so much, I said maybe we ought to just put it to a vote. I never actually thought they’d do it.” The results of the vote are legally binding, according to Richford attorney Steven Hebert, although the act of secession does not have any foundation in constitutional law. In other words, Richford is still a part of the United States, even if its citizens have decided otherwise.
“No we’re not,” said Richford sheriff Brad Wetherby. “We voted, and it’s a free country, and democracy means we are no longer in that free country, which actually means we have even more freedom, on account of there aren’t any laws yet, officially, in Richford. I haven’t pulled over any speeders since Tuesday, since there aren’t actually any speed limits anymore. Those are an Old-Richford sort of thing.” Wetherby claims he has been working with Hebert to draft some new laws, many of which are strikingly similar to the old ones.
“I’m not really sure what’s going to happen now,” says Fletcher. “Some folks are treating me like I’m in charge, other people say I haven’t been elected to anything in the new country so they won’t listen to me. My secretary hasn’t come in to work since the election results were announced. I have no idea where she is. Actually, I’m a little concerned. If you see her, tell her to call me.”
The first hurdle for Richford’s secession bid will be dealing with the state of Vermont itself. Gov. Scott was unavailable for comment, but his aides assured us he was discussing the matter with legal experts in Montpelier. More as this story develops.