President Trump reveals plan to use executive order to end birthright citizenship for children of illegals
Expect an explosion of media outrage and high powered lawsuits, especially in jurisdictions with Trump-hating federal judges. President Trump has launched an October surprise.
Last night in an interview granted to Jonathan Swan of Axios, President Trump announced his plans to use an executive order to end birthright citizenship for children born on American territory to illegal immigrants and foreign citizens, presumably at least those “not subject to the jurisdiction of the United States” as required by the 14th Amendment.
Swan does not seem pleased, at least to my eyes (HBO screen grab)
The Washington Post reports
“We’re the only country in the world where a person comes in and has a baby, and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States for 85 years with all of those benefits,” Trump said during an interview with Axios scheduled to air as part of a new HBO series starting this weekend. “It’s ridiculous. It’s ridiculous. And it has to end.”
Trump, who has long decried “anchor babies,” said he has discussed the move with his legal counsel and believes it can be accomplished with executive action, a view at odds with the opinions of many legal scholars.
“It was always told to me that you needed a constitutional amendment. Guess what? You don’t,” Trump told Axios.
When told that view is disputed, Trump asserted: “You can definitely do it with an act of Congress. But now they’re saying I can do it just with an executive order.”
“It’s in the process. It’ll happen . . . with an executive order,” he said, without offering a time frame.
Watch the one minute segment in its entirety:
The Washington Post scoffs:
The move, which many legal experts say runs afoul of the Constitution, would be the boldest yet by a president elected to office pledging to take a hard line on immigration, an issue he has revived in advance of next week’s midterm elections.
The Constitution says nothing about the children of illegal immigrants – or tourists on vacation in the US -- being entitled to citizenship. The Fourteenth Amendment reads:
“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.”
The key words are “subject to the jurisdiction.” As far as the “many experts” that the WaPo cites, the only experts that will matter in the end are those in the majority of the 9 justices of the Supreme Court.
Although Trump is not detailed in his remark, I assume that children of immigrants who are in the process of obtaining US citizenship would have citizenship passed along to their children, either immediately upon birth, or when their parents are naturalized. I leave it to legal eagles in the White House to work out the exact wording of the executive order/
This lengthy and detailed article by P.A. Madison explores the meaning of “subject to the jurisdiction thereof” as understood by the framers of the Fourteenth Amendment and by subsequent legislators who drafted citizenship legislation. There is no evidence that they wished to grant citizenship to children anyone who wandered across the border, however temporarily or illegally.
Trump’s dropping of this bombshell 8 days before the election is obviously intended to fire up both his base and his opponents, who will denounce him and – we can safely assume – go over the top and say things that defy common sense.
The stakes could not be higher. With millions of illegals, poorly educated and unable to obtain lucrative employment, in this country and having children who will be set up for a lifetime of dependency, the Democrats’ plans to change the electorate to a majority of dependents is succeeding.