Disclaimer; no, I don’t think any of the events in here are going to happen, or are even likely to happen, so please, no politics.
Ok, imagine that the UK government (including the Scottish parliament, Welsh Assembly, etc.) decides that it wants to become the 51st state of the U.S… As far as I can tell, this requires that the UK government become a republic, which would mean a restructuring of the election process and parliament, and getting rid of the monarchy. Assume this is all agreed on.
So here’s my first question; according to the full faith and credit clause, other states as well as the federal government are required to recognise the laws and statutes of other states, with the exception of matters relating to public policy. Does this mean that the UK’s membership of the European Union could be kept and so recognised?
Second question; the legal currency of the UK is pounds sterling. Would this need to be changed to U.S. dollars when becoming a state?
Third question (don’t worry, it’s the last one); Suppose the UK recognises a nation in law that the U.S. does not. Due to the full faith and credit clause, would this mean that the U.S. implicitly also recognises said state?
No, not in any meaningful sense. States don’t get to conduct foreign policy.
No. See reason above.
I do hope these inconvenient issues won’t delay the statehood petition. If it’ll help, I think we can arrange for you to keep the Union Jack as your state flag. (Although Hawai’i might be a bit peeved at that.)
To expand on Random’s answers, states are not allowed to have treaties with foreign governments. From Article I of the U.S. Constitution:
Interesting question about the nobility: I don’t know whether you’d have to revoke the titles of your current nobles, or if they could be grandfathered in somehow. (You can’t grant any new titles, but can you keep the old ones you already have?)
More likely titles would simply ceased to be recognized. The Duke of London could still call himself “Duke of London”, but his driver’s licence, voter registration, passport, etc would simple say John Smith-Doe. Queen Elizabeth II could be given a pension (as Liliuokalani after Hawai’i was annexed) thought she’d probally just move to a Commonwealth Realm.
We aren’t entirely without precedent here – the Republic of Texas lasted for a good nine years before being annexed to the United States. During that time, Texas signed treaties of recognition and commerce with several European nations including the Netherlands, Britain and France. As far as I know, those treaties ceased to have any validity after Texas joined the Union.
Presumably the restructuring also includes the governance of the Church of England, with ripple effects into the Anglican communion worldwide. Getting people to buy into a restructured governmental system is one thing - telling the CoE that the General Synod and Ecclesiastical Courts no longer enjoy official status is another. Though I would think that they wouldn’t really mind getting away from having the Prime Minister choosing their bishops.
Basically, the principle is that states have to recognize the actions of other states. The United Kingdom prior to its union with the United States is a independent nation not another state. So the laws that existed prior to its statehood don’t automatically carry over. And the United Kingdom was the entity that joined the European Union and signed various treaties. If the UK became a state, then the United Kingdom would cease to exist as a nation and those treaties would also cease to have any hold on it. As a practical matter, if this were actually to occur, there would have to be a major transition to reconcile the laws of the United Kingdom with the new laws of the states of England, Scotland, and Wales.
And the Church of Scotland, with effects on the Presbyterian community worldwide, since the Church of Scotland is the established church north of the border.
In addition, the Scottish legal system is so different that it is unlikely the Scots would want to join except as a separate state. That would mean that Wales would also seek statehood (not unreasonably), and then there’d be the Irish question: would the six counties join the Irish Republic, or would they also want to be a state?