Skip to comments.The Illegality/Un-Constitutionality of Dual Citzenship
Posted on 12/27/2009 2:36:30 PM PST by patlin
Until recent decades, American public policy consistantly prohibited dual citizenship. Since 1795, Congress has required that all candidates for naturalization formally renounce allegiance to their native land and any other foreign power. That requirement remains part of national law and is an integral element of the citizenship oath. The rationale for these policies is that citizenship requires undivided loyalty to one country.
(Excerpt) Read more at constitutionallyspeaking.wordpress.com ...
It should have been banned decades ago. For VERY OBVIOUS reasons.
Obonzo is a good example of why the Founders did it.
Interesting. Thanks for posting.
Because the United States has always recognized the definition of citizenship of common law, as outlined in Blackstone, as compared to that of European continental civil law, as defined in Vattel?
The most bizarre claim of the birthers is this one. It uses a law system utterly foreign to US legal history to define a term used in our Constitution.
The most bizarre claim of the birthers is this one. It uses a law system utterly foreign to US legal history to define a term used in our Constitution.
If US Legal History came AFTER the Constitution, how could you use it to define a term in the Constitution?
Please, our forefathers did not want our citizenry subject to British Common Law. Our country was bore of free men not subjects. British Common Law, made anyone born anywhere a subject, even in territories.
During the War of 1812 the British tried to use British Common Law to force our citizens into fighting.
They wanted citizenship for those who wanted to be American voluntary and they wanted ALLEGIENCE!!!!!!
The most bizarre claim of the birthers is this one. It uses a law system utterly foreign to US legal history to define a term used in our Constitution. ********************************************** If US Legal History came AFTER the Constitution, how could you use it to define a term in the Constitution? ---ROTB
ROTB's comment makes more sense to me. Thanks, ROTB...you are thinking straight!
Here’s a question for you: what if Hugo Chavez declared all US citizens to be Venezuelan citizens, a right passed that cannot be renounced? Then who could you elect as the next President?
We should ignore what other nations may try to bestow on an individual; it matters what the individual claims for themselves.
If you are born on a US Naval vessel to two US citizen parents, you are considered a natural born citizen by the US. But if that naval vessel was in Canadian waters, then Canada also considers you a Canadian citizen. Does the fact that Canada conferred citizenship to you make you a non-natural born citizen?
Many of us are duals. It depends on the country where one was born under their laws like McCain who is dual but wont admit it.
At this point, with all the crooks in congress, president, and the U.S. Supreme Court, I would love to kiss my U.S. citizenship goodbye. The problem is, according to U.S. law, I would have to continue paying U.S. taxes for at least the next ten year.
I am totally fed up with my own robber country.
Further, if one puts folks with duals to choose, the U.S. will no longer be their first choice.
I am fed up. I realized a few months ago I have no desire to return to my country. It is a total mess.
Thank you. I blow it from time to time, so when I do, please don’t think I am above correction.
I love this country, and am sad to see it falling.
I hope we get to see another Presidential election.
I hope Sarah won’t backstab us like every one else.
Would that be the same law system used by Congress in the 1790 Immigration Act wherein two American citizen parents were required for one to be considered a "natural born citizen"??? or would that have been the one used by Senate Resolution 511 in 2008 with the same two-parent definition??? or both???
In Obama’s case, your reply makes no sense to me. He was born to a foreign father and according to US law at the time of the adoption of the constitution, children followed the condition of the fathers and according to current US law, as long as the parents are married, the child still follows the condition of the father. That is why we find this in the guide to ‘naturalization’.
I concur that children born to 2 US citizens serving in the military is a very touchy subject and the fact that Congress dropped the bill to amend the Constitution for military, goes to show how corrupt they are.
The fact of the matter is, is that Congress has not brought these attempts to ammend the Constitution to the public for scrutiny, because they know full well that the general public(those educated in true American history) would never go for changing it.
And then we have the problem that NO national media outlet will touch the subject, despite all the Congressional historical records of attempts to change it.
Have you ever taken time to read early Commentaries on American Law and what references the Founders used to draft the Constitution?
My guess is not, or you wouldn't have posted up such a ridiculous question. You can find all that you need at the following links and what they have to say is specifically that the definition of the English common law subject was NOT the definition adopted by the US for its citizens.
Don’t personalize it to Obama or anyone else...
Fundamentally, would having citizenship of another nation bestowed on you cause you to not be a natural born citizen?
Can I, a person born of two American citizen parents, born in Seattle, be eligible for the Presidency if Canada grants me citizenship?
As an adult, if you take an oath to a foreign nation, yes, you renounce your birth status for POTUS, however, if you reside in a foreign country and return to the US 14 years prior to running for office, you are still eligible.
A natural born citizen can only loose his/her status by a legal act during adulthood.
These hypotheticals of foreign nations somehow changing their laws to claim people whom have never stepped foot on their soil to be citizens is ludicrous. There is something called the ‘Law of Nation’, it does exist and ALL nations & sovereignties are bound by it to some extent. That is why treaties are made between countries such as the Expatriation Act of 1868 and other treaties between the US and other foreign nations regarding citizenship.
I would recommend you go to my site, click on the scribd link to Wilson & Story's commentaries and read them as well as get your hands on Edwin Meese’s Guide to the Constitution.
Well in that case, just never mind why 0bama has spent upwards of a million bucks to hide the details of his birth, his school records, his travel history, ad infinitum.
It must be just something ‘personal’, eh Sherman?
So, in your opinion, if I take no oath to a foreign nation, I do not lose my natural born status, even if another foreign nation considers me a citizen?
Then your problem is not with dual citizenship, is it?
Tell me, if you take no oath and according to international law, no country can force you into citizenship, what would that make you?
Get over the hypotheticals, it has nothing to do with citizenship at birth.
The example of the navy ship in Canadian waters; you are a Canadian citizen by birth, per Canadian law. Even if you were born on a US Navy vessel to two US citizens.
Canada grants you citizenship; it is up to you to claim it, but you are a citizen as far as Canada is concerned nevertheless.
That is not hypothetical, that is real. Is your concern over dual citizenship or not?
The US founders knew that international law recognized either citizenship by soil or by blood and chose to require both for the highest US office.
Neither Chavez, nor any other foreign sovereign has the ability to declare any natural born (soil and blood) US citizen to be a soil or blood citizen of Venezuela or of any other sovereignty with any expectation of recognition under international law.
That is the beauty of the founders NBC formulation. A soil and blood NBC is impervious to interference by a foreign sovereign and POTUS particularly as CIC would also be impervious and unaffected by dual loyalties of dual citizenship if NBC was properly enforced.
Yet you can be granted citizenship by other nations, and it will be accepted. So is the problem with dual citizenship or not?
Thank you for posting those links, the British Common Law was we we wanted to AVOID!!!
It seems odd that jurists such as John Marshall were apparently not as learned as you and said the opposite. But what did they know who were around when people still knew why the words were chosen?
NBC is a condition of birth which is impervious to foreign claims. If a person, after the age of majority undertakes to acquire and is granted citizenship of another country, that has nothing to do with and does not negate NBC status.
“The problem” with Obama is that his stated biography (assuming a non-bigamous marriage of his parents) with his UK subject father would make Barry “governed by the BNA of 1948” and thus a dual UK-US citizen at birth. Barry would be a native born citizen (born on US soil if, indeed, he was) but not a natural born citizen, according to some constitutional scholars.
If Barry's parents had a bigamous marriage due to his father's previous Kenya marriage to Kezia, Barry would be the illegitimate son of a legally single US citizen mom and would be NBC under US law because he would not be a dual citizen. The BNA of 1948 does not pass citizenship to illegitimate children.
If Barry were actually born in Kenya and his HI vital record came about as a result of a fraudulent report of a home birth or some sort of post-birth amendment (so far hidden by HI vital records due to Barry refusing a release) Barry would not be NBC or even a US citizen due to the age of his mother under US law at the time.
Great, no problem with that.
So the problem isn’t with dual citizenship per se with what constitutes a natural born citizen, correct? Because this thread was all about how having a dual citizenship disqualified you for the Presidency. And I think we’ve reached agreement that you can be a natural born citizen AND hold dual citizenship.
YES!!! Dual citizenship was NEVER accepted and American Patriots fought and died in 2 bloody wars for our nation’s sovereignty and its sovereign citizens.
It’s time to take our country back & its Constitution & our sovereignty as it was defined by Chief Justice John Jays opinion in Chisholm v. Georgia, the first great constitutional case decided after the ratification of the Constitution of 1789:
[T]he sovereignty of the nation is in the people of the nation, and the residuary sovereignty of each State in the people of each State
[A]t the Revolution, the sovereignty devolved on the people; and they are truly the sovereigns of the country, but they are sovereigns without subjects ]
James Kent, Commentaries 1:39798; 2:3363 / 1826 1827
By the Constitution of the United States, Congress have power to establish an uniform rule of naturalization.
We are next to consider the rights and duties of citizens in their domestic relations, as distinguished from the absolute rights of individuals, of which we have already treated. Most of these relations are derived from the law of nature, and they are familiar to the institutions of every country, and consist of husband and wife, parent and child, guardian and ward, and master and servant.
To these may be added, an examination of certain artificial persons created by law,
under the well known name of corporations.
There is a still more general division of the inhabitants of every country, under the comprehensive title of aliens and natives,
and to the consideration of them our attention will be directed in the present lecture.
(1.) Natives are all persons born within the jurisdiction of the United States. If they were resident citizens at the time of the declaration of independence, though born elsewhere, and deliberately yielded to it an express or implied sanction, they became parties to it, and are to be considered as natives; their social tie being coeval with the existence of the nation.
(2.) An alien is a person born out of the jurisdiction of the United States. There are some exceptions, however, to this rule, by the ancient English law, as in the case of the children of public ministers abroad, (provided their wives be English women,) for they owe not even a local allegiance to any foreign power.
ThIs Commentary also refers to natural born and is quite clear that the definition of natural born, according to English Common law, to be
children of persons, both the father and mother, in imitation of the statute of 25 Edw. III.
and more here:
[Blackstone Commentaries (1765): When I say, that an alien is one who is born out of the king’s dominions, or allegiance, this also must be understood with some restrictions. The common law indeed stood absolutely so; with only a very few exceptions: so that a particular act of parliament became necessary after the restoration, for the naturalization of children of his majesty’s English subjects, born in foreign countries during the late troubles. And this maxim of the law proceeded upon a general principle, that every man owes natural allegiance where he is born, and cannot owe two such allegiances, or serve two masters, at once. Yet the children of the king’s ambassadors born abroad were always held to be natural subjects: for as the father, though in a foreign country, owes not even a local allegiance to the prince to whom he is sent; so, with regard to the son also, he was held (by a kind of postliminium) to be born under the king of England’s allegiance, represented by his father, the ambassador.
To encourage also foreign commerce, it was enacted by statute 25 Edw. III. st. 2. that all children born abroad, provided both their parents were at the time of the birth in allegiance to the king, and the mother had passed the seas by her husband’s consent, might inherit as if born in England: and accordingly it hath been so adjudged in behalf of merchants. But by several more modern statutes these restrictions are still farther taken off: so that all children, born out of the king’s ligeance, whose fathers were natural-born subjects, are now natural-born subjects themselves, to all intents and purposes, without any exception;...]
[F.E. Edwards, Natural Born British Subjects at Common Law, 14 Journal of the Society of Comparative Legislation 314 (1914): The pro- position that British Protectorates, and consequently any less interest of the Crown, should be excluded from our definition of the King’s protection, is supported by Sir William Anson, who declares that birth within such a region is not sufficient to found a claim for British natural-born status. The real test of whether a given territory is part of the British Dominions is that it must have passed openly, completely, and unequivocally into the possession of the Crown.]
[Solum: If the American conception of natural born citizen were equivalent to the English notion of a natural born subject, then it could be argued that only persons born on American soil to American parents would have qualified. This might lead to the conclusion that McCain would not be a constitutional natural-born citizen, because the Panama Canal Zone was not the sovereign territory of the United States, but was instead merely subject to its administrative control.
So you see, as sovereigns as defined by Chief Justice Jay, US citizens owe allegiance to non other than our own nation, the United States of America and it is high time Congress start upholding the Supreme Law of the land!
NO!!! The point is that citizenship granted by another nation is not something the US can determine! In the real-world example I provided, Canada will GIVE you citizenship (as you were born in their territory), but from a US standpoint you’re a natural born citizen.
The issue has nothing to do with dual citizenship; it is IMMATERIAL to the concern of President Obama or others. We cannot control what another nation decrees with regards to citizenship; in fact, some nations refuse to recognize renouncement of your citizenship (much like some religions refuse to recognize your leaving their religion).
So, stick with your central thesis - that he does not qualify as a natural born citizen because one parent was a foreign citizen; the dual citizenship he held is immaterial to the entire situation because the US has no control - nor does the Law of Nations dictate - over what other nations do in terms of granting citizenship.
Practically speaking....nothing is going to change.
This is my fional reply to you as you just don’t get it.
Born to 2 US Citizen parents on US soil, any other type of birth falls under Congressional control and thus is not natural. An act of congress has determined citizenship and since you claim to be a soldier, I suggest you go read the foreign affairs manual which clearly states that Congress as never determined if one born with dual citizenship would be eligible for POTUS.
Thus, until Congress acts, the rule is the rule and dual birthers are not ‘natural born’ citizens for constitutional purposes.
It’s right there in the law...go read it.
The POTUS eligibility issue is whether there is dual citizenship at birth from a foreign citizen parent or by being born on foreign soil, not dual citizenship aquired as an adult or from a previous citizenship of a parent or grandparent. SCOTUS has only ruled that there is “no doubt” that the child of two US citizens born on US soil is an NBC. SCOTUS has only said there “is doubt” over the child of only one US citizen parent and foreign parent born on US soil.
The founders were fully aware that other countries, like Britain, could claim as subjects the blood children of former citizens (War of 1812 fought over impression of US NBCs claimed as UK subjects) but appeared to disregard that type of dual citizen from being qualified as NBC (nearly the whole USA in 1800).
After reaching majority an NBC can obtain foreign citizenship in some cases without renouncing US citizenship and thus an NBC can become a dual citizen as an adult, but that has no bearing on NBC POTUS eligibility, which is a condition of birth that cannot be altered.
How can I, when you post an article about the unconstitutionality of having dual citizenships and then refuse to discuss the entire issue? Seriously, get your thoughts organized in a logical, cohesive manner first.
If the issue is having dual citizenship, then state it and STICK TO IT. But you don't want to do that. Fine. You're doing more damage to your position by your bait-and-switch tactics.
Canandian waters are equivalent to Canadian soil. Such a baby would be a dual US-Canadian citizen at birth, but SCOTUS has not yet clarified whether or not the child would be NBC eligible to be POTUS, per the scholars I trust. Scholars I trust say such a citizen, born outside the US, would be a “statutory citizen” not a constitutionally defined NBC and thus not POTUS eligible.
Kreep and Taitz argued the NBC issue before Judge Carter and he said he was offended that a child of a US serviceman (John McCain) on active duty on foreign soil, as in your example, would be a citizen but might not be NBC eligible to be POTUS. Current State Dept. regs pretty much say the matter has not been resolved by SCOTUS.
The John Jay letter to George Washington rationale for the NBC clause makes avoidance of “foreigners” as CIC (with dual citizenship and dual loyalty) the primary reason for the clause.
The Congress has decided that a person born on a military ship or military base to two US citizens is a natural born citizen. Meaning if you’re on that Navy (or Coast Guard) ship in Canadian waters, and both your parents are US citizens, you are a Natural Born Citizen. And you also hold Canadian citizenship.
Look, the issue is you’re trying to restrict a person’s eligibility based upon what a 3rd party (another nation) decides to do. If the UK considered you a citizen, and granted the full rights thereof, are you suddenly prohibited from being President? NO! Because you haven’t renounced what you originally had.
The issue of dual citizenship is irrelevant, and is a serious distraction and bad avenue of argument over President Obama’s standing as a natural born citizen. None.
If you are born of two American citizens, you are natural born.It doesn’t matter where the birth takes place; having tow US citizens for parents is what does matter.
In Obama’s case, only one parent is a US citizen. Therefore he is not natural born.
Since there is a divorce decree for the Obamas, one has to assume a marriage took place, even if the documentation is not yet found.
If the Obamas were married,their son is still not natural born.
If they were not legally married, he is still not natural born.
If Barry is illegitmate, i.e. no marriage took place, or it was bigamous, Barry is still the product of only one US citizen, not two.
It seems like Barry is not a natural born citizen under any of the scenarios presented, as he does not meet the definition of two US citizens. Even if the British Act of 1948 does not convey British citizenship to him if was born as an illegimate, that still does not change the fact that his father was NOT an American citizen.
So he does not meet the definition of natural born in the law.
I believe your statement is false. Please provide a link.
To my knowledge, Congress has only found such persons to be citizens under Congresses statutory naturalization power, not natural born citizens. Congress on its own can't change the definition of NBC in the constitution and only SCOTUS can clarify what that means. Numerous efforts in Congress have been attempted to re-define NBC, but none have passed.
Senate resolution 511 attempted to declare McCain a natural born citizen in a non-binding resolution, but it was just that...non-binding!
See also the link in the story at the top of this string detailingn the history of failed Congressional attempts to re-define NBC:
The last word from SCOTUS in the Minor case is that “there is doubt” of NBC status if a parent is foreign, but the court declined to rule definitively at that time. So SCOTUS has not yet ruled in an “on point case” that Obama is not a natural born citizen.
I personally believe that if the court had ruled at the time, they would have resolved the doubt against children of foreign fathers being NBC, but that didn't happen, as far as I can tell. I think Obama, the golfer, is counting on a Mulligan in his favor if the current dispute makes to SCOTUS, given the lack of a prior clear ruling and with him being a sitting president already.
Of course if he could be proved to have been born in Kenya, he would be toast!
Founder George Mason and others condemned the Constitution and walked out. Mason in particular, stated that it completely overturned English Common Law.
Mason’s resistance is the reason we have the Bill of Rights, drafted as promised immediately after the first Congress was seated. Drafted on Christmas Day, 1789, in fact, and modelled after the Virginia Declaration of Rights, penned by Mason.
To the extent that English Common Law is embodied in our Constitution, these Amendments drafted to placate George Mason represent it. The Constitution as ratified, however does not, as Mason pointed out. Emerich de Vattel was indeed a primary influence upon the framers, and there are copious historical references and cites to back up that claim.
Now, the States were a different matter. Many States were almost entirely creatures of the English Common Law, such as New York. Others, such as Connecticut, Virginia and Georgia, were not. There was a strong Dutch and German influence in many of the colonies, so much so that German at one point vied for English, as a contender for the “national language.”
Our legal heritage is in no way entirely that of the English as a result. And, even if it were, to claim that our Founders, men who risked their lives and their fortunes to rebel against the English, would turn right around and use the very same construct, that of the natural-born subject of the English King, to determine their own citizenship, is irrational.
Vattel covered aspects of law including citizenship law internationally, hence the name of his two volume work, The Law Of Nations.
Blackstone dealt strictly with the English monarchy.
Has the United States ever been a monarchy, in your estimation? No, it has not. Therefore, Blackstone is of very limited utility, in seeking to understand original intent of the Founders.
I’ve been studying this matter for going on two years now, and repeated claims made, as if we’ve remained subjects of the English King all along, are the bizarre ones, not those that acknowledge multiple sources influencing the Founders of what was, after all, the very first modern Constitutional Republic. By the way, the constitutional republic was discussed and outlined at length by none other than ... Emerich de Vattel.
Bump Dat X 2...
Would mean nothing. "Man's" laws can not be used to make one a "Natural" born citizen. Completely contradicts the whole meaning of the term.
Besides, such and action would never be recognized by international law. Would be like our Congress then turn around and make all Venezuelan citizens U.S. citizens. Or better yet, make everyone Natural Born citizens. Would be meaningless. Not to mention, would be cause for severe military action against them.
Blackstone dealt strictly with the English monarchy."
Exactly. Look no further than the Declaration of Independence for crystal clear Vattel influence on the founders (& eventually framers) on the making of our Constitutional Republic (i.e. NOT a monarchy).
If you have citizenship from two different country's, you have what the framers wanted to prevent (post grandfather clause) with the inclusion of the NBC requirement for the Commander in Chief...divided loyalties.
If one is born in country, to two citizen parents and never obtains (or is "granted") citizenship by another sovereign...that person will have no loyalties "owed" to another country.
It should be clear to most why the United States would/should NEVER want a Commander in Chief of the armed forces to have multiple allegiances...loyalties owed to another country.
Dual citizenship/dual alligiences wasn't a good idea for the CinC in 1787...nor is it a good idea in todays world.
A good many of the Founders were attorneys. Even those who weren't had studied law, to some extent, as it was considered part of the education of a gentleman.
The law they studied, and in many cases had made their living with, was the common law. It was still in effect in all the states, with exceptions as per specific statues.
Yet you contend that when they wished to use a specific legal term, natural-born citizen, they went outside the common law definition and meaning, substituting a definition from a completely alien system of law, which none of them had ever used before, based on European practice later codified by Napoleon in his Code.
It is also quite strange that the US Supreme Court, in those cases which have some bearing on the term in question, spend a lot of time discussing Blackstone, which they assumed was the default position on the issue, except as modified by statute.
Many States were almost entirely creatures of the English Common Law, such as New York.
Odd you should mention this, as NY used large amounts of civil law, from the Dutch, for issues involving real estate, well into the 19th century. I believe it was the State most influenced by civil law during this time, with the exception of LA. Other states, notably CA, have since been influenced, specifically with regard to the law of marriage and divorce.
I find those of you who are trying to inject civil law into our Constitution quite amusing. Civil law developed in exactly the opposite way from common law. It grew from edicts imposed from above by absolute rulers. Common law grew from below, developed out of the customs and practices of the people, as laid out over centuries by rulings of judges.
Civil law is in origin despotic, common law is in origin democratic, or at least aristocratic.
Why you want to elevate the stature of a legal system based on edicts imposed by an absolute monarch is quite beyond me.
This question has to be settled once and for all. But I guess I’ll just be told that I have no *standing*...right?
Study of the citizenship laws are not all that hard to comprehend if you do not put your search into too small of a circle.
If Barry had been born illegite and his father had never come forward and made any claim to him, then according to US law at the time of the adoption of the Constitution, when a woman’s citizenship followed that of her father until she married, Barry would have been a considered a natural born because he would have held no allegiance to any other country than the US.
British common law followed the same practice regarding illegitimate children.
Under citizenship laws, there was never allowance for dual citizenship for national security & sovereignty reasons and it still remains the same today.
Dual citizenship is accepted, but it has never been made law.