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Fri Aug 23, 2019, 05:49 PM

Trump Wants to Abolish Birthright Citizenship. Can He Do That?

Source: New York Times

Trump Wants to Abolish Birthright Citizenship. Can He Do That?

The president reasserted his wish to do away with automatic citizenship for anyone born in the United States. Here is what he, legal experts and the Constitution have to say on the subject.

By Patrick J. Lyons
Published Aug. 22, 2019
Updated Aug. 23, 2019, 2:45 p.m. ET

The day after his administration unveiled a regulation that would allow it to indefinitely detain migrant families with children, President Trump also revived talk of a much more radical step: abolishing automatic American citizenship for anyone born in the United States.

Mr. Trump said on Wednesday that the rule, enshrined in the Constitution for more than 150 years and rooted in common law before that, was “frankly ridiculous,” and said the White House was “looking very, very seriously” at ending a policy that in the past he has called “a magnet for illegal immigration.”

Here is what you need to know about birthright citizenship and whether the president could put an end to it.

Does the Constitution guarantee birthright citizenship?

Yes. The 14th Amendment says, “All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.”

-snip-

Can the president abolish it?

No. The president cannot amend the Constitution, and an executive order trying to end or restrict the right to citizenship of persons born in the United States would almost certainly be challenged in court as a violation of the 14th Amendment.

-snip-

Read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/22/us/birthright-citizenship-14th-amendment-trump.html

18 replies, 1043 views

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 06:05 PM

1. He doesn't know that he can't do that

he's never read the Constitution.

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Response to CanonRay (Reply #1)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 06:37 PM

9. It's an Amendment and can be repealed as the 18th Amendment was. It could be done.

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Response to virgogal (Reply #9)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 07:51 PM

14. Yes, but HE can't do that.

You know, Mr. Only I Can Fix It.

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Response to virgogal (Reply #9)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 10:18 PM

16. Indeed, a number of countries have

fixed that anomaly in the not distant past. Canada and the US are I believe,the only two developed countries which haven't.

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 06:06 PM

2. such an attempt sounds positively impeachable does it not? nt

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Response to msongs (Reply #2)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 06:34 PM

8. That would be an IMPEACHABLE offense if he issued an Executive Order.....

to end citizenship of any kind as explained under the 14th Amendment.

Congress would have no choice but to seek impeachment and Republicans would be on notice for allowing and supporting such a Trump fiat.

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 06:20 PM

3. It specifically mentions the "State wherein they reside."----I know

nothing about this stuff but could that be the sticking point? Again,I'm just curious.but that phrase might exclude tourists and visitors.

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Response to virgogal (Reply #3)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 06:28 PM

4. Tourists and visitors are by definition not citizens.

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Response to hedda_foil (Reply #4)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 06:31 PM

6. Thanks----I re-read it and understand better.

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Response to hedda_foil (Reply #4)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 06:34 PM

7. And people born here are by definition not tourists or visitors.

Both terms imply you're from somewhere else, which can't be a place you've never even been.

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Response to virgogal (Reply #3)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 06:29 PM

5. The United States *and* the state wherein they reside

Really the only thin reed I see for them to stand on is "reside". But they would have to throw out centuries of jurisprudence to claim that undocumented immigrants don't reside here because they didn't fill out the right paperwork

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Response to virgogal (Reply #3)

Sat Aug 24, 2019, 11:37 AM

18. I'd interpret that as meaning the US states...

eg, if you're born in Pennsylvania, you are a citizen of the US and Pennsylvania, and subject to the laws of the latter. This serves to prevent individual states from ginning up their own citizenship laws.

-- Mal

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 06:44 PM

10. The part they rely on to negate birth right citizenship is 'subject to the jurisdiction thereof'

They claim that if the parents weren’t legal, they weren’t subject to our jurisdiction. Like foreign ambassadors aren’t prosecutable because they aren’t subject to our jurisdiction.

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Response to Shrike47 (Reply #10)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 06:49 PM

11. By that logic, the offense of illegal entry into the United States would be unenforceable.

It isn't. Foreign nationals on U.S. soil are subject to U.S. laws (with the narrow exception of diplomatic immunity). Undocumented status does not put people beyond the law's reach.

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Response to Eugene (Reply #11)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 07:00 PM

12. So why does the clause even exist? Nt

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Response to FBaggins (Reply #12)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 07:11 PM

13. To make it unambiguous and inclusive.

The "subject" clause was the key point of United States v. Wong Kim Ark.

From the Wikipedia article:

The Supreme Court's majority concluded that this phrase referred to being required to obey U.S. law; on this basis, they interpreted the language of the Fourteenth Amendment in a way that granted U.S. citizenship to children born of foreigners (a concept known as jus soli), with only a limited set of exceptions mostly based in English common law.


https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Wong_Kim_Ark

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Fri Aug 23, 2019, 08:25 PM

15. It's a deflection. nt

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Response to Eugene (Original post)

Sat Aug 24, 2019, 11:31 AM

17. That's a dumbass question.

I'll do the NYT the courtesy of assuming it to be rhetorical.

Mr Trump can do whatever he damn well pleases. The question is whether or not he has the leverage to pull it off.

-- Mal

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