We’ve all heard the stats: currently, only the United States grants birthright citizenship to illegal aliens and 8% of babies born in the US are so-called “anchor babies” born of illegal aliens. In and of itself, this doesn’t constitute a crisis, but, for many of us, it does illustrate how far we’ve strayed from the Constitution.
Like all babies, “anchor babies” too are sweet and cuddly, and deserving of mother’s love and society’s protection. But automatically conferring citizenship on babies of illegal aliens is an ideologically-motivated perversion not only of internationally accepted legal norms, but, much more importantly, of the Constitution itself.

By nimbly mischaracterizing the motives of birthright citizenship opponents, many in the media and blogosphere—to include attorneys who should know better-- have irresponsibly misrepresented the framers’ intent and have reduced the level of discourse on this legitimate constitutional issue to that of ad hominem, race-baiting, specious legal citations, contrived legal justifications, and mindless pandering. Shamelessly seeking ideological and political supremacy, to these people the Constitution and the rule of law mean absolutely nothing. And for a nation which once prided itself as being a “nation of laws”, that is inexcusable.

During an interview with Mr. Trump last night, what annoyed me greatly was Bill O'Reilly's characteristically bombastic--and wholly erroneous--claim that "the 14th Amendment says that any person born on US soil is a US Citizen. Period".  Poppycock! He couldn't have carefully read the amendment at all to reach this specious conclusion. And the fact that even Judge Napolitano, a Libertarian jurist, a few days earlier asserted this revisionist and ignorant view is nothing short of bewildering and troubling.  But, this does underscore just how flawed and fallible jurists and seemingly bright, well-informed talking heads really are.

That said, for my own edification I decided to take the time to again review the actual words of the 14th’s framers, pertinent case law and the opinions of jurists and legal scholars on both sides of the question to determine the truth in this matter.

Here are my findings and conclusions:

First, while researching pertinent materials, I soon discovered that understanding the clear intent and meaning of the 14th Amendment was much simpler than anticipated. In fact, the meaning of the 14th was surprisingly straightforward. Lesson learned: if one simply abandons one’s ideological blinders for a moment and commit to an honest effort to objectively review a constitutional issue, clarity is nearly always one’s reward.

It also became apparent that from a strictly Constitutional standpoint, and despite many assertions to the contrary from both the left and the right, a constitutional amendment is NOT needed to deny US Citizenship to anchor babies of illegal entrants. In short, I was unable to find ANY convincing constitutional evidence that so-called anchor babies can legitimately and automatically acquire U.S citizenship. Thus, a simple act of Congress--and most certainly NOT an amendment to the Constitution—to clarify the original intent and meaning of the 14th Amendment is all that is really needed to resolve this issue once and for all.

Toward this end, introduced on April 2nd, 2009, and co-sponsored by 93 congressmen, inclusive of one lonely Democratic supporter, Mississippi’s Gene Taylor, HR 1868 (Birthright Citizenship Act of 2009) intended to amend section 301 of the Immigration and Nationality Act to provide that a person born in the US is “subject to the jurisdiction” of the US for citizenship purposes if the person is born in the US of parents, one of whom is: 1) a US citizen or national; 2) a lawful permanent resident alien who resides in the US; or 3) an alien performing military service in the US Armed Forces.” And if one simply reviews the original meaning of the 14th Amendment one can easily see that there was absolutely nothing at all revolutionary about this bill's language. In any event, the bill failed.

Intended to protect the rights of emancipated Negroes, the 14th Amendment specifically provided that “all persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and the State wherein they reside.”

And as I very quickly learned, of central importance in this statement is the phrase “subject to the jurisdiction thereof”, something birthright citizenship proponents have consistently and very conveniently ignored.

To begin, Sen. Jacob Howard of Michigan, co-author of the 14th Amendment, expressly asserted that “this will not, of course, include persons born in the United States who are foreigners, aliens, who belong to the families of ambassadors or foreign ministers.” And it is in this plain-spoken construction birthright proponents somehow discover ambiguity or a totally different meaning. Amazing!
Under Section 1992 of the US Revised Statutes, the same Congress which adopted the 14th Amendment confirmed that “all persons born in the United States who are not aliens, excluding Indians not taxed, are declared to be citizens of the United States.”

In 1873, the US Atty Gen ruled the word “jurisdiction” under the Fourteenth Amendment to mean the absolute and complete jurisdiction. Aliens, among whom are persons born here and naturalized abroad, dwelling or being in this country, are subject to the jurisdiction of the US but only to a limited extent. Political and military rights do not pertain to them.”

Sen. Trumbell noted during the drafting of the 14th Amendment that it was the amendment’s goal to “make citizens of everybody born in the US who owe allegiance to the US,” and if “the negro or white man belonged to a foreign government he would not be a citizen.”

On March 1, 1866, Rep. James Wilson of Iowa, House Judiciary Committee, added that “we must depend on the general law relating to subjects and citizens recognized by all nations for a definition, and that must lead us to conclude that every person born in the US is a natural-born citizen of such States, except that of children born on our soil (jus soli) to temporary sojourners or representatives of foreign governments.” This statement served to nicely clarify Sen. Howard’s construction above.

John Bingham, framer of the 14th Amendment’s first section, stated that Sec. 1992 of the Revised Statutes meant “every human being born within the jurisdiction of the US of parents not owing allegiance to any foreign sovereignty is, in the language of the Constitution itself, a natural born citizen.”

And if we reach way back to our founders in search of a definition of citizens of a foreign power, Thomas Jefferson said “Aliens are the subjects of a foreign power.”

To a man, among the framers the premise behind “within the jurisdiction thereof” was that all children born to parents who owed no foreign allegiance were to be citizens of the US; thus, not only must a child be born on US soil (jus soli) but born of parents whose complete allegiance is to the US.

Subsequently, Sen. Howard further explained that “only thru expatriation, which could be accomplished thru law alone, and not thru any immigrant acting on his own outside the law—and certainly not by any act of birth alone—could an alien become a citizen.” This, of course, would mean that the alien/sojourner would need to affirmatively renounce his allegiance to his/her country of origin before s/he could be considered completely within the jurisdiction of the US.

Sen. Howard also stated the following: “…the word 'jurisdiction', as here employed, ought to be construed so as to imply a full and complete jurisdiction on the part of the US, coextensive in all respects with the constitutional power of the US, whether exercised by Congress, the executive, or the judiciary; that is to say, the same jurisdiction in extent and quality as applies to every citizen of the US now.” In effect, he was saying that an alien may, by treaty arrangements with his country of origin, avail himself of the protection of the US, much as sojourning US citizens in the alien’s country of origin would avail themselves of that country’s protection, but that an alien's physical presence in the US alone would not render him/her under the "complete jurisdiction" of the US. Simple enough.

The rationale behind not granting automatic citizenship can be easily illustrated by the fact that Indians could not be subject to the jurisdiction of the US because the US dealt with them through treaties. By logical extension, aliens sojourning in the US are extended privileges and protections by virtue of treaties in force with their countries of origin, much as American citizens are granted similar rights and privileges—but not citizenship--when sojourning in those countries. Logically, therefore, only if an alien voluntarily and affirmatively renounces his citizenship and expresses an intent to swear allegiance to the US may the alien, through operation of law (a formal naturalization process) be granted US citizenship. Thus, in a nutshell, since neither children of tourists/sojourners nor of diplomats born in the US can be US citizens, children of illegal entrants cannot be lawfully granted the privilege of US citizenship.

In 1867, George Yeaman, American Minister to Denmark, in his highly respected treatise on allegiance and citizenship and for whom the framers had great respect, asserted that “the idea of a double allegiance and citizenship united in the same person, and having reference to two separate, independent, and sovereign nations or governments, is simply an impossibility.” Thus, dual citizenship was also a no-no. (Take note, BHO.)

P. A. Madison, a modern day master of constitutional analysis, points out that “since illegal aliens are unlawfully in the US, their native country has a proper and primary claim of allegiance on the child. Thus, the completeness of their allegiance to the US is impaired, which therefore precludes automatic citizenship.” Slam dunk obvious, I’d say.

Also, Rep. Aaron Sargent, a representative from California during the Naturalization Act of 1870 debates, said the 14th Amendment’s citizenship clause was not a de-facto right for aliens to obtain citizenship. Significantly, none of his contemporaries disputed that assertion.

Adding to this mix, here is a little case law since the 14th’s ratification.

In the Slaughterhouse Cases(1873), the Supreme Court observed that the 14th Amendment overturned the Dred Scott decision by making all persons born within the United States and subject to its jurisdiction, citizens of the US; the ruling went on to point out “that [the 14th Amendment’s] main purpose was to establish the citizenship of the Negro” and that “the phrase ‘subject to its jurisdiction’ was intended to exclude from its operation children of ministers, consuls, AND citizens or subjects of foreign states born within the United States", thus reinforcing Sen. Howard’s construction above. So, since they cannot be subject to US jurisdiction, children of citizens of foreign sovereignties and children of foreign ministers/consuls/ambassadors cannot be lawfully considered US Citizens. Makes perfect sense.

Then, in Elk v Wilkins (1884), the Supreme Court ruled that the 14th Amendment did not even confer citizenship on Indians—because they were subject to tribal jurisdiction, not U.S. jurisdiction. In effect, the court essentially stated that the status of the parents determines the citizenship of the childand not merely the fortuitous birth of that child on American soil. (Note: not until the Citizens Act of 1924 was U S citizenship granted to American Indians. As with many whimsical court rulings over the years, I was unable to understand the legal grounding for this reversal. Thus, it would seem that judicial arbitrariness is not an affliction peculiar to modern day American courts alone.)

In US v Wong Kim Ark (1889), the courts held that children born in the US of parents of foreign descent who, at the time of the child’s birth are subjects of a foreign power but who have a permanent domicile and residence in the US and are carrying on business in the US, and are not employed in any diplomatic or official capacity under a foreign power, and are not members of foreign forces in hostile occupation of US territory, become a citizen of the US at the time of birth. As expressed in the minority opinion, this decision violated the 14th Amendment. But, in any case, how many new illegal aliens have permanent domiciles in the US and how many of them are carrying on business in the US at the moment of their child's birth on US soil? I suspect precious few. (Note too that the parents of Wong Kim Ark were in the US legally. They were not illegal entrants.)

In Steel v Citizens for a Better Environment (1998), the court stated that “jurisdiction is a word of many, too many, meanings.” Au contraire! As can be clearly seen above, Sen. Trumbell and, yes, Sen. Howard, 14th Amendment co-authors, had long ago provided an unambiguous definition by declaring that “the provision is, that all persons born in the United States, and ‘subject to the jurisdiction thereof’’, are citizens. That means ‘subject to the complete jurisdiction thereof. What do we mean by ‘complete jurisdiction thereof'? Not owing allegiance to anybody else. That is what it means.” And this from the framers' themselves! (Clearly, majority jurists in the Steel v Citizens court didn’t bother to research the framers’ clear intent and meaning. And one must wonder if a neophyte, such as I, can easily deduce original meaning, why can't trained jurists? Could it be incompetence or do political agendas get in the way of constitutional law?)

Despite the clear meaning and intent of the 14th's framers, we fast forward to the somewhat enigmatic ruling in US ex rel. Hintopoulis v Shaughnessy (1982), which some bloggers and others have used to justify birthright citizenship. In that case, and out of whole cloth, somewhere in the ruling it asserted, almost unconsciously/unwittingly, that although a child born in the US to two illegal aliens was a US Citizen (????) that, nonetheless, “suspending the alien parents’ deportation based upon “the accident of birth in the US of their son would be to deprive others, who are patiently awaiting visas…” Thus, since the glancing allusion to the legality of birthright citizenship, though gratuitous—and erroneous—appeared in the text of this suspension of deportation decision, birthright proponents often blithely and excitedly cite this case to substantiate the legality of birthright citizenship. Grabbing at straws, I'd say.

Then, true to activist form, in Plyler v Doe (1982) the court, apparently without access to or proper reliance on the 14th framers’ erudition and written words, mysteriously ruled 5-4 that there is “no plausible distinction” with respect to “jurisdiction” between resident aliens who entered the country lawfully and those resident aliens who entered unlawfully. Wowee! Clearly a yawning violation of the framers’ clear meaning and intent. Seems judicial activism was as alive and well in 1982 as it is today.

To me, these two rulings which capriciously and arrogantly turned Thomas Jefferson and the framers of the 14th on their heads are clearly unlawful at worst, convenient contrivances at best.

When I explained all this on-line to an attorney who is also a strong proponent of birthright citizenship, this was her reply: “I disagree with your interpretation of the phrase ‘subject to the jurisdiction thereof'. The first rule of statutory construction is that we don’t look to the drafters’ intent if the words are plain and unambiguous…If the drafters meant to include some allegiance test, they would have. They didn’t.” That sort of revisionism, gobbledegook, willful ignorance and dishonesty is, folks, what this country is up against. My rejoinder was civil, but to the point: “It wasn’t MY lowly interpretation. It was the framers’ interpretation. But, ignore original intent and meaning? A living constitution is like having no constitution at all. We can merely make it up as we go along and continue to hand-off an increasingly irrelevant document to the next generation. While I sincerely hope this isn’t what you have in mind, at this juncture I can see there’s really nothing more to discuss with you on this or any other constitutional issues. How very sad.”

Finally, based upon what I now understand, we must be faithful to the 14th Amendment framers’ clear intent and meaning—surely a tall order with so many political activists, globalists and social engineers infesting our courts these days. In the case of "birthright citizenship", Congress is constitutionally empowered to re-assert the original meaning of the the 14th Amendment, and that's precisely what it should do.

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Amen Bonnie... 

Since so many disagree, what's needed is congressional action to define it. As I understand it, the 14th Amendment under Section 5 says that, "The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article." I believe that may be the means by which anchor baby status can be abolished. That is also why holding on to the House is so vitally important.

One problem Roberto,

 The Republican Party holds some of the House, the Democrats hold the Senate, the old saying Drain The Swamp has gotten so old, people just look at the words and say, we are still waiting!!!!!!!!!!

 A lot of Republicans need to be Drained with the Democrat Party.

 So I am just saying, if some within both parties want Illegal Imagination, its time to lock in their names and plaster it on the bathroom walls if we have to. Other then this, I do not see this going no where, sorry.......


I agree that there're a lot of Republicans who need to go. They seem to be more concerned about maintaining the status quo rather than daring to restore the CENTRAL government to a republican form of government constrained by the Constitution.

However, let me mention, at this time In the House there're 237 Republicans and 197 Democrats. In the Senate there're 51 Republicans, 47 Democrats, and and 2 Independents, who both caucus with the Democrats. That means the Republicans control both Houses of Congress.

Right now the GOP could pass a law clearing up the issue of birthright citizenship as Clause 5 of the 14th Amendment seems to allow Congress that power. But will they have the courage and integrity to do so? Sadly, I doubt it.

GOP, can not do nothing without a Convention Of States, and I am not talking about a Article V.

 These laws have been on the books for so long they are gathering dust. And every new Imagination Law to be passed was by the Republicans. Even One real good one. All of them are waiting for the Dems to take office again, so they can undo all that Trump did.

 If they dump birthright citizenship, it will just get amended back in.

 So how to Enforce this with Constitutional Laws and make it, Treason to touch it???

There are two (2) legal arguments against Birthright Citizenship for illegal aliens and legal aliens here on temporary Visas... One Constitutional argument is that the US Constitution doesn't apply to non-citizens.  Therefore there is no legal status for illegal aliens or those here legally on temporary visas to seek birthright citizenship under any provision of the US Constitution.   The second, is that the 14th Amendment  never extended Birthright Citizenship to illegal aliens or those legal aliens here on temporary visas.  

Giving a hearing to Globalist and Progressives seeking open borders and universal citizenship to their cause ignores the simple reading of the US Constitution and the Supreme Courts duty to rule on this issue...

The President may bring this issue to the forefront... by issuing an Executive Orde (EO)... which denies the unlawful extension of Birthright Citizenship to the children of illegal aliens... That EO would likely bring a court challenge by the Marxist/Globalist in both Political Parties, as they attempt to get the Courts... to, estblish a right that doesn't exist. Birthright citizenship, for illegal aliens, here illegally or legally via temporary visas... vacation, student, work, diplomatic, etc.


 We all ready know all of this and even more then we have shared, I personally have been reviewing a file, and its a wing dingier of a file.

 So how to share it, is even more interesting, news to be shared.


Colonel, the SCOTUS ruled in Zadvydas v. Davis (2001) that "due process" of the 14th Amendment applies to all aliens in the US whose presence maybe or is "unlawful, involuntary or transitory." Therein continues the legal confusion over the issue.

I'd like to see the SCOTUS not only abolish anchor baby status but also definitively define what constitutes Natural Born Citizenship status.

The US Supreme Court is not constitutionally permitted to amend the constituiton in the course of ruling on the law...The application of Supreme Court findings doesn't extend to making new law or revising existing law. It reamins up to Congress to change the law... too, agree with the US Supreme Court's decisions, by taking their findings under advisement, and as necessary to  change the Statutes or Amend the Constitution, to conform to the Supreme Court's findings. 

If Congress fails to act on the US Supreme Courts findings... it automatically signals it doesn't agree with them and the Courts findings are moot... apply only to the case at hand. Stari Decisis is not law nor should it continue to be treated as law... it is the findings of the Court based on a specific case in law and no more.

The clear and simple reading of the Constitjution makes it plain for whom the Constituiton is written and to whom it applies... It was written for Americans (US Citizens) not Aliens...  legal or lillegal.

The US Supreme Court has made many rulings outside their jurisdiction or perview... their rulings need to be reviewed and prooerly applied by Congress.  The Constitution doesn't extend its jurisdiction or protections to ILLEGAL ALIENS... The United States provides Aliens in the Country legally extension of Constitutional protection by statutory law. Congress has said it takes Naturalization to become a citzen, too accrue the protections of the US Constituiton.

I don't believe that our founders intended gave Citizenship rights to anyone who arrived on our soil... legally or lillegally.  I believe they gave Congress and the President the power to deal with naturalizaiotn and the administration of law while Aliens are here legally and illegally.... the Constituiton doesn't automatically  immure to Aliens.

Colonel, you've hit the nail on the head in your last 2 points. As a conservative constitutional scholar once wrote, modern constitutional law has little or nothing to do with the Constitution.That's due to the concept that Stare Decisis and Case Law are almost sacrosanct.

So what are we conservative constitutionalists to do? Should we revolt with each ruling we disagree with? What happens if someone like McCain, Cruz, Haley, Rubio, or Jindal, all of whom have been called ineligible by some, gets elected president? Should we disobey them (especially if we're government employees or military) or call for their elimination as some did with Mr. (intentional) Obama?

Also, what of the constitutional law concept of the Incorporation Doctrine? Do the first Ten Amendments, the Bill of Rights, apply to the States? Under the doctrine the 14th Amendment provides Americans with a broad definition of their undeniable rights, especially the Due Process Clause. It recognizes a series of substantive due process rights. The Clause simply forced the States to respect all legal rights established in the Constitution. Were the SCOTUS Decisions of Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad v. City of Chicago (1897) and Gitlow vs. New York (1925) improperly decided cases? So is the Incorporation Doctrine valid or was it an over extension of federal power through the SCOTUS?

Unfortunately, I believe we're at a crisis made by both parties and tremendously exacerbated by the Left, especially since the time of Pres. Wilson. The question is, do we really want a democratic (very small d) REPUBLIC under the rule of honest Constitutional Law with a free market capitalist economy or not. That's why I favor an Article V Convention despite the risks to restore the Constitution to its rightful role, especially Article 1, Section 8 which limits the role of the federal government and the Bill of Rights.

We are in agreement Roberto... the Pettifoggers have made a mess of it and the SCOTUS operating alone may not be able to correct it...  Humpty, dumpty sat on a wall and had a great fall and all the kings men and horses can not out Humpty, Dumpty together again....

The United States has major problems with the applicaton of legal decisions made by the courts... The Courts findings should never be substituted for statutory or Constitutional law... Stari Decisis should not be considered law... let alone 'settled law'.  The Courts decisions are simply findings of the facts and law as applied to a specific case and where the courts find the law in error... it is up to Congress to act not the Courts.  

Congress must act when it is found that they have leglistation needing correction... if they fail to act, then the Courts are chided and rebuked by Congress's silence... When Congress acts, to amend the law, in compliance with the findings of the Court, Congress then concurrs with the Court. 

We must insist that the Congress legislate... not the Courts. Otherwise, we grant to much power to the unelected judiciary and their cohorts the pettifoggers.  Stari Decisis must not be the basis for administering the laws of the United States. Case law may inform the courts but not the law... It must not become law.




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Florida Sheriff — “I Will Not Enforce Assault Weapons Ban, Neither Will Most Sheriffs”

Dennis Lemma, who is the Sheriff in Central Florida’s Seminole County, told a group of 2nd Amendment activists recently that he would not enforce an assault weapons ban that could soon become Florida law if the “Ban Assault Weapons Now” amendment passes in the Sunshine State.

According to News965, the ban has the following specifications.

The amendment proposed in the state legislature would ban possession of assault weapons, which are defined as “semiautomatic rifles and shotguns capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition at once, either in fixed or detachable magazine, or any other ammunition feeding device.”

Lemma, an ardent supporter of the 2nd Amendment and a first term sheriff who is running for re-election, said this about whether or not he would enforce such a law.

“It’s not only that I wouldn’t, the majority of sheriffs across the state would not do it,” Lemma said in the video. It’s up to the sheriffs what they are willing to enforce.”

Trump Holds Rally in Milwaukee, WI 1-14-20

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