Photo of Donald Trump: AP Images
Photo of Donald Trump: AP Images

 

End birthright citizenship,” Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has demanded, as part of his overall plan to reduce the flood of illegal immigration into the United States. “This remains the biggest magnet for illegal immigration.”

It is estimated that as many as 400,000 children are born annually in the United States to illegal aliens. This makes them “natural born citizens” of the United States, according to a fairly recent interpretation of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Then, when these “citizens” reach their 21st birthday, they can petition for legal status for their parents.

This is why these babies born on U.S. soil to parents who are in the country illegally are known as “anchor babies.” An anchor baby provides its parents a cornucopia of welfare benefits. Even a staunch liberal such as Senator Harry Reid of Nevada once opposed the idea that the children of illegal aliens should receive automatic citizenship and reward their parent’s breaking of U.S. laws. “If you break our laws by entering this country without permission, and give birth to a child, we reward the child with U.S. citizenship and guarantee full access to all public and social services this society provides — and that’s a lot of services,” Reid once lamented.

Of course, Reid said that over 20 years ago. Now, he and the rest of the Democratic Party have figured out that adding more individuals to the welfare rolls also adds more voters for the Democratic Party.

Steve King, a U.S. representative from Iowa, is a sponsor of a House bill designed to restrict this automatic birthright citizenship, and he welcomes Trump’s taking up the issue. “I don’t have any doubt that the immigration statement that Trump put out is going to help provide momentum for a number of different pieces of immigration enforcement legislation, and especially birthright citizenship,” King said.

Charles Krauthammer dismisses the effort to end birthright citizenship. “If you are born in the United States, you are an American citizen. So says the 14th Amendment.” But is Krauthammer correct? Is that what the 14th Amendment actually says?

It certainly does not appear that the authors of the 14th Amendment intended for it to be used in such a manner as Krauthammer asserts. A proper understanding of the 14th Amendment requires an examination of the clear wording of the amendment, the historical context in which the amendment wasdrafted, and the intent of the Framers, as expressed during the legislative debate and discussion on the amendment in 1866. It is also helpful to examine how the amendment was interpreted by judges in the first few years after its adoption, before modern liberalism warped that interpretation, as it has so much of the rest of the Constitution.

Written by Steve Byas
Full report at The New American

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