Skip to comments.Exclusive: Trump to terminate birthright citizenship
Posted on 10/30/2018 2:48:25 AM PDT by be-baw
President Trump plans to sign an executive order that would remove the right to citizenship for babies of non-citizens and unauthorized immigrants born on U.S. soil, he said yesterday in an exclusive interview for "Axios on HBO," a new four-part documentary news series debuting on HBO this Sunday at 6:30 p.m. ET/PT.
Why it matters: This would be the most dramatic move yet in Trump's hardline immigration campaign, this time targeting "anchor babies" and "chain migration." And it will set off another stand-off with the courts, as Trumps power to do this through executive action is debatable to say the least.
Trump told Axios that he has run the idea of ending birthright citizenship by his counsel and plans to proceed with the highly controversial move, which certainly will face legal challenges.
"It was always told to me that you needed a constitutional amendment. Guess what? You don't," Trump said, declaring he can do it by executive order. When told says that's very much in dispute, Trump replied: "You can definitely do it with an Act of Congress. But now they're saying I can do it just with an executive order."
"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 ... with all of those benefits," Trump continued. "It's ridiculous. It's ridiculous. And it has to end." "It's in the process. It'll happen ... with an executive order."
The president expressed surprise that Axios knew about his secret plan: "I didn't think anybody knew that but me. I thought I was the only one. "
Behind the scenes:
Swan had been working for weeks on a story on Trumps plans for birthright citizenship, based on conversations with several sources, including one close to the White House Counsels office. The story wasnt ready for prime time, but Swan figured he'd spring the question on Trump in the interview.
The legal challenges would force the courts to decide on a constitutional debate over the 14th Amendment, which 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."
Be smart: Few immigration and constitutional scholars believe it is within the president's power to change birthright citizenship, former U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services chief counsel Lynden Melmed tells Axios.
But some conservatives have argued that the 14th Amendment was only intended to provide citizenship to children born in the U.S. to lawful permanent residents not to unauthorized immigrants or those on temporary visas. John Eastman, a constitutional scholar and director of Chapman University's Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence, told Axios that the Constitution has been misapplied over the past 40 or so years. He says the line "subject to the jurisdiction thereof" originally referred to people with full, political allegiance to the U.S. green card holders and citizens.
Michael Anton, a former national security official in the Trump administration, recently took up this argument in the Washington Post.
Anton said that Trump could, via executive order, "specify to federal agencies that the children of noncitizens are not citizens" simply because they were born on U.S. soil. (Its not yet clear whether Trump will take this maximalist argument, though his previous rhetoric suggests theres a good chance.) But others such as Judge James C. Ho, who was appointed by Trump to Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, in New Orleans say the line in the amendment refers to the legal obligation to follow U.S. laws, which applies to all foreign visitors (except diplomats) and immigrants. He has written that changing how the 14th Amendment is applied would be "unconstitutional."
Between the lines: Until the 1960s, the 14th Amendment was never applied to undocumented or temporary immigrants, Eastman said.
Between 1980 and 2006, the number of births to unauthorized immigrants which opponents of birthright citizenship call "anchor babies" skyrocketed to a peak of 370,000, according to a 2016 study by Pew Research. It then declined slightly during and following the Great Recession.
The Supreme Court has already ruled that children born to immigrants who are legal permanent residents have citizenship. But those who claim the 14th Amendment should not apply to everyone point to the fact that there has been no ruling on a case specifically involving undocumented immigrants or those with temporary legal status.
The bottom line: If Trump follows through on the executive order, "the courts would have to weigh in in a way they haven't," Eastman said.
The full interview will air on "Axios on HBO" this Sunday, Nov. 4, at 6:30 p.m. ET/PT.
Push polling shown on faux this morning showed healthcare 2 to 1 over immigration and economy? What bullscat.
Trump can do it with an executive order and end this lawlessness.
The immigration system should have been fixed, including the elimination of birthright citizenship via constitutional amendment during the administration of George W. Bush when the GOP had the House, the Senate and the executive branch. Unfortunately Bush was a globalist who pushed amnesty, not real border control. When he coulnt Get his amnesty plan through Congress he simply loosened enforcement at the border and ignored the situation.
Today we have a fighting President with the passion to protect the border but with a Congess and bureaucracy determined to keep the border open. If Trump cant get the laws rewritten in the next two years the opportunity to control immigration will be lost. Executive orders can be erased by future presidents with the stroke of a pen. Legislation is harder to repeal (Obamacare is a shining example) and Constitutional amendments are virtually impossible to erase.
Unfortunately a citizenship Constitutional amendment would not get the votes in Congress today much less be passed by enough states. If the GOP fails to retain both houses of Congress, immigration legislation and funding for the wall will be off the table forever.
“Further, the next President could overturn the EO with the stroke of a pen.”
You mean the next President has the ability to naturalize citizens? I don’t have that in my Constitution.
The constitution did not set up birthright citizenship!
I totally agree.We AINT buying the scat they are trying to sell.
Which may well be the intent. The President cannot overturn federal law with an Executive Order. But he can issue one and the challenges to it will allow the courts to finally decide the matter.
Not to sure that matters. Just the fact that he does it will assure it gets challenged and the Supreme Court will have to rule on it.
Two reasons he can do it:
1. There is no Supreme Court precedent that interprets the Constitution differently.
2. The Constitution does not explicitly say that the Supreme Court's interpretation of the Constitution generally overrides that of either Congress or of the President, who are co-equal branches of government. The Constitution does explicitly grant the "Judicial Power of the United States" to the Supreme Court, but nowhere is that defined as the ability to set binding precedents that the other two branches must respect beyond the parties to the cases for which the Court has issued a ruling. At most, it requires that the other two branches respect the Court's decision as it applies to the parties to the cases brought to the Court, but not that they do so for other parties who haven't petitioned the Court, and whose cases the Court has not adjudicated. In other words, if Jose Illegalson sues to be granted citizenship under the 14th Amendment, and the SCOTUS rules in his favor, the Executive Branch is only Constitutionally required to treat Jose himself as a citizen, not his sister Manuela, who didn't petition the Court, and so who has no SCOTUS ruling that personally applies to her.
Nowhere does the Constitution incorporate English Common Law into US Law, neither with respect to any precedents set by British courts, nor with respect to principles such as "stare decisis." Several prominent Founders argued exactly that, including Madison and Jefferson.
You mean the next President has the ability to naturalize citizens? I dont have that in my Constitution.
POTUS certainly has the authority to distribute federal benefits to those legally here.
Trump WON the election solely on THE WALL and immigration anyone Tharp says otherwise is pushing pure BS!!! Trump knows this just as we do, Trump based his entire campaign on what he learned talking to the guys on his construction sites, Trump has ALWAYS been more comfortable with the guys on the construction sites that with the rich elites people would expect him to hang out with!!!
So, in case you people missed it...under the 14th, children born here to foreign nationals, whether here legally or illegally, are not U.S. citizens.
There is no law and you know it.
hey, leave me alone!!!!
This was always a leftist distortion of the language anyway. Kill it.
Agree. Live by the EO, die by the EO. He will get Congress to act.
IOW, the courts are not the final arbiter of what’s constitutional. If they were, then we’d have a judicial tyranny. Oh wait, that’s what we have now.
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