Founder of #CalExit

Louis Marinelli was born in Buffalo, New York in 1986. He shares a birthday with William B. Ide of Massachusetts, the leader of the Bear Flag Revolt that brought about the short-lived California Republic in 1846. The two were born on March 28.

Throughout Marinelli’s educational career, he studied Russian Translation at the Institute for Applied Linguistics at Kent State University in Ohio, and Political Science at the University of Northern Iowa and later at Oregon State University, where he completed his coursework for that degree. He also has a TEFL certificate and is currently pursuing a professional certificate in journalism at the UCLA Extension.

Marinelli, 36, is married to a legal immigrant from Russia and is the father of a dual citizen of both the United States and Russia. He is a registered Republican and identifies as a national-populist.


Louis Marinelli

President | Yes California


Timeline of Political Activism



  • Worked as a GOTV volunteer for the John Edwards presidential campaign in the leadup to and during the Iowa caucuses.


  • Founded “Protect Marriage,” the largest social media campaign at the time championing traditional marriage in the United States.


  • Embarked on a cross-country bus tour advocating for the defense of traditional marriage, holding rallies in 21 cities in 17 states.


  • Publicly announced support for civil marriage equality, stating that same-sex couples ought to have the right to civil marriage but that churches ought to decide the definition of holy matrimony.


  • Founded Sovereign California to advocate for states rights and the secession of California from the United States.


  • Founded the secessionist California National Party, drafted its original platform and served as its first chairman.
  • Rebranded Sovereign California as YesCalifornia and was elected leader of the California Independence Movement.


  • Volunteered with the campaign to repeal California Senate Bill 277, a law which removed the personal belief exemption for vaccines in California.
  • Qualified for the ballot and ran for California State Assembly as a No Party Preference candidate on the platform of California secession with the ballot designation of “California Independence Leader.”
  • Attended an international conference in Moscow, Russia, and spoke on the topic of secession in the United States as the delegate of the California Independence Movement.
  • Opened the California Culture Center in Moscow, Russia with a permanent exhibit on US and California civil rights history.


  • One of the first to use the term “divorce” with respect to state secession at a political rally organized in Sacramento on Valentine’s Day in 2018. This eventually led to the term “national divorce,” as currently adopted by Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene.
  • Filed a ballot measure that would have put a California independence referendum on the 2020 ballot. 


  • Temporarily detained by Moscow police at a rally in support of the freedom of the press in Russia after an investigative journalist was framed for drug smuggling in an attempt to prevent him from publishing his expose on corruption in the Russian government.


  • Invited as guest of honor to an exhibition in Moscow on the humanitarian crisis resulting from the ongoing war in Yemen. Gave brief remarks in support of peace in Yemen.


  • Filed statement of intent to run against Gavin Newsom in the 2021 governor recall election but was ultimately unable to file candidacy, as he was overseas shepherding his wife through the U.S. immigration process.
  • Returned as president of YesCalifornia in the Fall of 2021 and returned the campaign to its original philosophical roots of classical liberalism, Thomas Jefferson, and the Declaration of Independence by parting ways with those officers who had led the campaign astray by promoting the leftist agenda of radical social transformation.


  • Launched a new initiative for YesCalifornia in 2023 called CalExit 3.0, a ballot initiative that establishes the country of Pacifica out of the most far left regions of California in and around the San Francisco Bay Area while keeping the rest of the state in the Union to save America through national divorce.


On radical left wing policies aimed at radical social transformation

Marinelli opposes “woke” ideology and the broader effort by leftists to bring about radical social transformation. As such, he does not declare his self-evident pronouns, opposes the effort to allow biological men to participate in women’s sports, or use women’s bathrooms and locker rooms, and vice versa.

Likewise, Marinelli stands strongly against sex change operations and related medicines and treatments for persons under the age of 18, the inclusion of these topics in elementary and middle school curricula, and believes drag shows should not be put on for children.