What If New Brunswick Decided to Join The USA?

Suppose there is a plebiscite in NB, and the populace decide that they are getting a raw deal from Ottawa. So they vote, and decide that they want to join the Union.
They send a guy to Washington, to plead their case. They offer the following:
-immediate access to the N. American fisheries
-x million new citizens, already English-speaking
What would Congress do? Canada is a big friend and ally-would it piss off Ottawa if the USA offered union with NB?
Hey, now we can build that Bay of Fundy tidal power plant!
And Campobello Island will now be in the USA!

At this stage, I think it’s more likely Vermont would vote to join Canada.

The vote would be subject to the Clarity Act, and would have to be negotiated with Canada’s federal government before negotiations with the United States could begin.

The government of New Brunswick could not legally engage in the negotiations you describe until it had been legally seceded from Canada, and the government of the United States would never be stupid enough to do it. It would be a gigantic political insult and an international embarassment that would cost billions of dollars in the ensuing brouhaha and likely raising of trade barriers.

There are only 750,000 people in New Brunswick and the province is, by provincial law, bilingual.

Why wouldn’t New Brunswick just secede and become an independent state instead of joining the USA?

In fact, I believe, by federal constitutionallaw as well. (Although presumably this wouldn’t matter in the case of succession).

I think it more likely that Maine and Vermont try to join Canada. I suppose that in the future there may be a country independent of both Canada and the USA that incorporates part of the Maritimes and part of New England. They could call it Acadia or Cabotland or something.

I just got a B+ in Public International law, and similar such questions came up on our final! Lol, I have two thoughts:

The Atlantic coast fisheries (and the water in general) are not governed by a pure equidistance rule, because of the peculiar shape and bend to this coast. Even with NB, you’d still be floating around in Canadian Jurisdiction thanks to NS and PEI. Much of the water boundaries between Canada and the U.S. is already decided by treaty, and so shifting boundaries may change NB’s individual treaty obligations, but not necessarily fishing boundaries. The gulf of Maine case by the ICJ (1984) touches on a lot of these points in more detail than I really understand, TBH.

Second, in the hypothetical you pose, there seems to be no positive obligation on Canada to adhere to NB’s demands to secede. I don’t know much about the constitutional debate RE: Quebec, but it’s at least not an internationally recognized right to make a disgruntled province separate. They don’t seem to have the character of a “people” who lack representation in the Federal gov’t (requirements for statehood from the Montevideo Convention); the maritime provinces are technically over-represented in parliament. International law would likely never recognize their right to secede and join another state, therefore, what NB wants is sort of moot.

Because it’s too small for a republic and too large for a lunatic asylum? (South Carolina was, in 1865.)

If Quebec separated, then the Maritimes would be isolated and might secede. Whether they would want to join the US or remain independent is not clear. (Not to me, anyway.) But I cannot imagine Congress would want a bunch of socialists in the US. Maybe if they joined as once state, they might go along, but can you imagine Congress agreeing to 8 more Democratic senators?

Funny, Maine and Vermont have always been odd men out. In 1936 they were the only two states to vote against Roosevelt. Until then the old mantra, “as Maine goes, so goes the nation” became “as Maine goes, so goes Vermont”. (In those bygone days, Maine voted 6 weeks before the rest of the country.)

There are no Canadian Democrats and, in event of unification, I expect there still would not be. The existing Canadian political parties – from a party-system that does not precisely map on to the U.S. party-system – would be represented in Congress under their present names and structures.

It seems absurdly unlikely that State of New Brunswick residents would go on for any substantial period of time voting for parties that were completely irrelevant in the context of U.S. national politics. The Democrat/Republican system would very quickly entrench itself there.

So, if the Liberals are now Democrats and the Conservatives are now Republicans, what are the New Democrats? Also Democrats?

I was thinking of federal parties. Looking at parties in the New Brunswick legislative assembly, you have the Progressive Conservatives and the Liberal Association – what are they, now? Pubs and Dems respectively?

They’d be leftist Dems, and far-leftist Dems, in trying to place them on the skewed American spectrum.

Very likely, but you’re proposing to completely change the political questions, so people would organize themselves accordingly. Politics isn’t a simple left-right thing; the questions being asked in Canada are different from the ones being asked in the USA.

However, initially, certainly people would overwhelmingly vote Democrat. Many New Brunswick Conservatives would vote Democrat (Maritime Conservatives are more old-school Red Tory than Western Conservatives) and Liberal and NDP voters would be almost universally Democrat. It’d be the bluest state in the Union and a complete dead zone for the GOP, as in fact every province in Canada would be. (To give some perspective, the most conservative province in Canada, Alberta, supports gay marriage by more than a 2-to-1 ratio and are pro choice by a margin of approximately four to one. Support for universal health insurance approaches unanimity in every province.)

… But of course that’s assuming a magic wand makes NB part of the USA tomorrow. One would have to assume spome pretty serious shit would have to go down for New Brunswickers to suddenly want to be part of the USA; there are by some measures no people in the world who want to be Americans less than Canadians. Whatever trauma caused separation might mean totally different issues and outcomes.

“Skewed”? No, no. Dog south, tail north, don’t you try to do the wagging. :wink:

Don’t flatter yourself. You’re country isn’t doing the wagging - rather, various factions within your country are. It’s the continuing efforts of a disproportionately powerful evangelical segment that prevent any kind of meaningful integration between the U.S. and Canada, by which I mean the U.S. finally muzzles them, becomes sane, and thus more Canada-like.

I wish we would. Then would you unite with us? (Not just NB, the whole thing. Even the territories. Yes, we’ll have Nunavut. [rimshot])

Well, you’ll need a more Canadian-style banking system, for starters…

What’s the difference? Serious question.