So, should the U.S. sell Montana to Canada as one online petition is proposing?
After the U.S. national debt soared to more than $22 trillion earlier this month, a man named Ian Hammond launched a petition on Change.org last week to sell Montana to Canada for $1 trillion to reduce the national debt.
“We have too much debt and Montana is useless,” the proposal reads. “Just tell them it has beavers or something.”
Although the petition appeared to be created in jest, it has already earned more than 12,000 signatures as of Thursday morning.
“[I’m] just surprised that so many people have ‘backed’ my ‘cause,’” Hammond wrote in the petition’s comments. “All in all this is pretty epic.”
Montanans’ reactions to the petition have been mixed.
“Nobody could stand looking at such an ugly map for such a tiny dent in the national debt,” one man told ABC Fox Montana.
“God, I really hope it’s a joke,” another man said.
However, some Montana residents have voiced their support for the idea.
“I’m Montanan and hoping to join Canada without the moving costs. Let’s do this. Please adopt us,” one commenter wrote on the petition.
“I’d love this to happen. Montanans would then have decent health care, better roads, and more ice arenas,” one woman wrote.
Kristen Inbody, a columnist for the Great Falls Tribune in Montana, told CTV Regina she has spoken to a number of residents who listed legal marijuana, healthcare, better tea, and Tim Hortons as potential draws in Canada.
As for how Canadians feel about the possible acquisition…
One Saskatchewan resident said $1 trillion sounds like a lot of money, but acknowledged it would be a lot of land.
“It’d sure be a beautiful state to own I guess,” another man said.
Montana lawmakers have even weighed in on the debate during a state house committee meeting earlier this week. The 20-member committee voted 15-5 against being sold to Canada.
“It was not a unanimous vote though,” Inbody said. “That’s the crazy part.”
The house committee did, however, shoot down a satirical proposal to formalize their opposition to the petition in the form of a bill