Skip to comments.Does the Constitution actually require a Citizen or a Natural Born Citizen?
Posted on 04/25/2011 5:24:30 PM PDT by Helotes
From Article II of the US Constitution:
"No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States. "
My question is why, if you are hankering for a showdown at the Supreme Court, does it take a Natural Born Citizen and not just a Citizen as the text states?
This clause: “a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution,” is there because at the time of Adoption of the Constitution, there were by definition NO natural born citizens, the nation not existing before then. Therefore anyone who was a citizen at the time of adoption qualified, too.
Wow. Just wow.
Its a Natural Born Citizen, OR, a citizen at the time of the adoption of the constitution. Thus, if you were just a citizen at the time of the adoption of the constitution you could qualify as President, but AFTER the constitution was adopted, only Natural Born Citizens qualify.
I came across this post while looking up the process by which John McCain, also IMHO not a NBC, was approved. Revisiting the Obama Eligibility Question, April 22nd, 2011, By Paul R. Hollrah, Guest Blogger
It is important to note that all four references
the 1866 Bingham statement, the Olson-Tribe Memorandum, the Leahy statement, and the U.S. Senate Resolution
all utilize the plural terms parents or American citizens, strongly suggesting that the natural born question rests, in large part, on the necessity of both parents being U.S. citizens.
"On September 17th 1787, the U.S. Constitution was ratified by two-thirds of the colonies, and thus adopted."
The ‘simple Citizen’ clause refers to to those people who were around when the Constitution was adopted (in the 18th century) who could not be Natural-born citizens since the US did not exist prior to that. Once the last person born before that date had died, the clause no longer has useful meaning.
The only exception to the "natural born" citizen requirement was for those who because of the American Revolution gained United States Citizenship because of the defeat of the British. You could not wait for children to be born as "natural born" (both parents citizens at their birth) because someone had to hold the offices. That generation of people were one-time grandfathered in. After that generation, ALL were required to be "natural born" citizens....
I doubt that 0bama is actually even a citizen. After renouncing his citizenship for Indonesian citizenship, attending school over there as an Indonesian citizen, traveling under an Indonesian passport to Pakistan and attending college in the US as a FOREIGN STUDENT, there is no record of him ever regaining American citizenship.
So what we have is a kenyan-born, Indonesian marxist would-be dictator, usurping the office of President.
The phrase "at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution" is the modifier for the phrase "a Citizen of the United States".
Obviously at the time of the signing of the Constitution there were no natural born citizens who had attained the age of 35. The intent of the clause is that the president should have no allegiance toward any other country.
But there is one important factor, that the left seems to not be able to grasp.
The phrase indicates that THERE IS A BIG DISTINCTION between what the founders thought was a NATURAL BORN CITIZEN versus your plain old granola CITIZEN
Zero may be a “citizen” because of his mother and the 14th amendment, BUT HE CAN NEVER BE A “NATURAL BORN CITIZEN!” His father WAS BRITISH!!!
“No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States. “
The Constitution states clearly, in the writing style of the day, that only a natural born citizen is eligible to be president now. You can re-write it into two different sentences to make it clearer what the two categories of people eligible to be the American president are:
“A natural born Citizen shall be eligible to the Office of President; “
“A Citizen of the United States at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution shall be eligible to the Office of President; “
Those are the only two classes of citizens allowed. By the time of Van Buren there weren’t as many people left who were still alive before the founding of this country and who were thus eligible as citizens at the time of the adoption of our Constitution.
Unless the community-organizer-in-chief was born prior to 1787 and had citizenship by that year, he has to pass the natural born citizen criteria. Good luck to him. If they need to do some forgery, it might almost be easier to make it look like he’s the oldest president we’ve ever had.
For all their brilliance, the founders, of our nation, sucked, at the, proper use, of commas.
You can post a buttload of images.
What does that do to remove Obama?
How about we vote him out instead of crying over some billboards?
Voting him out has an historical history of success.
Bad Presidents have been voted out many times.
Crying about documents after the fact has worked.. never.
This phrasing followed the literal terms of British statutes, beginning in 1350, under which persons born abroad, whose parents were both British subjects, would enjoy the same rights of inheritance as those born in England; beginning with laws in 1709 and 1731, these statutes expressly provided that such persons were natural-born subjects of the crown. There is reason to believe, therefore, that the phrase includes persons who become citizens at birth by statute because of their status in being born abroad of American citizens. Whether the Supreme Court would decide the issue should it ever arise in a ''case or controversy'' as well as how it might decide it can only be speculated about.
While some have suggested that perhaps a "natural born citizen" must have been born on US territory (i.e., in keeping with the definition of a citizen given in the 14th Amendment) -- and news reports dealing with presidential eligibility almost invariably misstate the rule in this manner -- the majority opinion of legal experts seems to be that the term refers to anyone who has US citizenship from the moment of his or her birth -- i.e., someone who did not have to be "naturalized" because he/she was born "natural" (i.e., born a citizen).
The first Congress enacted a citizenship law which stated that "the children of citizens of the United States, that may be born beyond sea, or out of the limits of the United States, shall be considered as natural born citizens". [Act of Mar. 26, 1790, ch. 3, 1 Stat. 104.] This strongly suggests that the phrase was understood by the framers of the Constitution to refer to citizenship by birth.
Really? Did you post that, really?
You might consider that the English language has evolved over the last 235 years making our usage differ from the original.
The problem with your approach is that, by giving the Usurping Marxist a pass on the natural born citizen requirement, you establish a precedent. This precedent would not only encourage others to do the same thing again. And it would not even be limited to the citizenship requirement. You would have effectively destroyed the most powerful vehicle for protecting your individual and God-given rights.
You need to learn to respect and revere your Constitution it is literally all there is between liberty and tyranny in this country.
That said, one hopes American voters will disenfranchise him at the ballot box in due course—even if he isn’t impeached and thrown out of office. You understand, of course, that if his butt is kicked out of the WH because he was, in fact, ineligible to run for the office in the first place every piece of legislation and Executive Order he has signed becomes null and void—including Onadacare.
But what really sticks in my craw about your position is that the opportunity is lost to try and convict this man as a clear and present danger to this country. You do understand that if he is impeached for being ineligible to be president he cannot be tried for treason. In due course of the impeachment it will be proven this man was, in fact, an Indonesian citizen.
It is important to America’s long term viability—as a free republic under God—that the Constitution be adhered to as intended by the the Founding Fathers. This country was truly blessed by the wise men who led Americans to a victory over Britain and then created our Constitution and Bill of Rights. Frankly, my friend, you seem a bit too eager to abandon the wisdom and God given protections detailed in those two documents.
You lost me right there.
YOU do not show up and presume to school me on any subject.
You must earn that privilege. You have not done so.
Rephrase your rant and we'll give it another shot.
Avoid telling me what I "need" to do, in your estimation.
Because frankly I have no reason to acknowledge your estimation of anything.
I think it is not about “crying over billboards”,
but is about attempting to show the weight of the evidence
of US citizens (unlike the impostor) who now demand
It took some time to collect them, and if you find
more, please freepmail their location to me. thanks.
“What does that do to remove Obama?”
Obama may be the immediate problem, but not challenging him on the basis of eligibility per Article II can become a longer term issue.
Knocking Obama out of the oval Office, even if it is the last day of his term, goes a long way towards mitigating the damage done to our nation and Constitution, and give teeth to the Constitutional eligibility requirements for the future.
As a Natural Born US citizen, indeed, as a citizen of any stripe, I expect and demand that the President of the US live up to his oath to protect and defend the Constitution. Evading the eligibility requirements of Article II is a violation of that oath and something I cannot abide. Neither should you.
It is possible that BHO, Sr. is not Obozo's father. Opening a can of worms.
I may just do so, should the opportunity arise.
As regards the removal of Obama, though, I don't think such efforts will come to much.
If proven wrong, I'll be the first to admit it loudly and prominently.
When the Founders were writing this Constitution... the majority of those that were either in leadership positions or would be assuming leadership positions were born in Europe. If you were a citizen as of the Ratification of the US Constitution, then you were eligible to run for the Office of President. Anyone that was a “Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution”, are long since dead... as is that clause in Article II.
A valid point.
Doubly so as I have a son serving under this “Commander in Chief”.
I have to ask, though, if this issue ISN’T about Obama so much
as Constitutionality then WHY so much drama and tears over HIS documents?
He’s IN THERE, it’s an ACCOMPLISHED FACT. Further, I reckon He’s gone
in the next election cycle. If it isn’t so much about Obama as about
the letter of the law, why isn’t the focus more on insuring proper
vetting of future candidates? What the hell does Obama’s paperwork
have to do with future candidates?
I hear that. My daughter is in Germany with her husband and my grand kids just now.
I have to ask, though, if this issue ISNT about Obama so much as Constitutionality then WHY so much drama and tears over HIS documents?
Speaking for myself, because showing just how obviously flawed 0bozo was and is drags Pelosi, the MSM and all the rest into the light of day. Some of those folks need to be in jail, we need to get those SCOTUS seats back for a legitimate President to fill, and there needs to be shock and awe for all the grazing sheep in this disinterested country to see so they will never again be complaisant, at least in my kids lifetimes, about who these treasonous bastards are.
And I would be happy as a pig in, well you know, to get half that. But to give those who conspired to do this a pass and "move on" just screams "Thank you sir! May I have another!", in which case I would just as soon have my kids home now. There won't be anything left to fight, and certainly die, for.
Well... that’s just it. Obama was elected, and the election was certified by the Senate, and he legally became President. Much as that sticks in my craw... that’s the legal fact.
If he were proven to be ineligible for office... honestly... we’d be on an entirely new legal landscape. I’m not actually sure what the mechanism would be. Is it impeachment? Well... impeachment is for lawfully elected Presidents. Would his signatures on laws or vetos be still binding? Good question... since there’s simply no precedent. Would his removal be retroactive? Or just from the date he was found ineligible? I don’t know. The chaos of a retroactive “impeachment” could very well be worse than the crime. It would certainly be more disruptive than anything that’s ever happened before in U.S. history.
It would be a harder case to prove than some people think, I think. The State of Hawaii declared he was born there before the election. Given that, what is “proof”? I have a birth certificate from Arizona, but I don’t have an official statement from the sitting Governor of Arizona attesting that I was born there. Which one wins in court? The Senate confirmed his election as President. Those are important things for which there is no process for un-doing.
Not quite. John Tyler born March 29, 1790 was the first Natural-born President of the US in 1841.
Ah, the “I’m offended” defense. It’s so old. But that’s what happens when the argument are cogent and the questions uncomfortable.
The comma is oddly placed, I’ll give you that.
Not really. The only Founders I can think of born outside of what became the United States were Tom Payne and Alex Hamilton.
There were probably others, but almost all were born in the colonies.
They do seem to have sort of sprinkled commas around at random, don’t they?
Certainly some were born in the Colonies... not all and that clause exists for the very same reason that I said that it did.
Do we really want an American President, or would we settle for a Guest Lecturer?
A better way to explain it would be “a natural born citizen is one who would be a citizen without question, regardless of where he was born.”
>> “It is possible that BHO, Sr. is not Obozo’s father. Opening a can of worms.” <<
Under the laws of every state, the husband of the birth mother is the legal father, regardless of the genetics.
There are two types of citizens: natural born and naturalized. Natural born citizens have to meet specific requirements spelled out in the Constitution - basically, they are born in America. Naturalized citizens can be born anywhere, but become American citizens by either being old enough and a resident long enough (dependent on marital status) or by being under the age of 18 and adopted by one or more US parents.
That does simplify it, but Americans born overseas to one or both American parents are Americans regardless of where they’re born, aren’t they? It’s just a question of notifying the State Department of their birth, I thought; they don’t have to apply for citizenship, as far as I know. To my knowledge, natural born citizenship requires birth on American territory, eg. John McCain’s situation.
Have you ever seen any evidence that Stanley Ann Dunham actually married BHO, Sr.? Even Obozo stated that he was not sure about a marriage license. There is no evidence that Stanley Ann and BHO, Sr. ever lived together in HI as husband and wife. And he already had a wife in Kenya at the time he "marrried" Stanley Ann. Yes, there is a divorce document for them, but there is no copy of a marriage license with the divorce papers that are available.
And you know what they say about opening a can of worms don't you? Answer: Once opened they will never go back in the same size can.
But all were previously English "subjects". After the revolution they were United States Citizens. Subject to neither King nor Potentate
3 types of citizens:
1. U.S. Citizen (all inclusive of other types)
2. Naturalized Citizen (had other nationality but made a citizen after birth by meeting requirements)
3. Natural Born Citizen (born in the U.S. or military bases under jurisdiction of the U.S. to Parents (plural as in 2) who were citizens at the time of the child’s birth.
>> “ but Americans born overseas to one or both American parents are Americans regardless of where theyre born, arent they?” <<
No, there are various conditions, and if the child is born in the father’s country to an American mother they would normally not be citizens, although there are circumstances under which they might be.
Only when both parents are American citizens are they automatically also citizens.
You need to add a fourth class to your list: born in the US to non-citizen, legal resident mother.
Under the current interpretation of the law, all babies born on U.S. soil are citizen by birth regardless of parents. This is solely by interpretation of the law.
I have no problem with immigration. Illegal immigration is against the law. We should be a nation of laws, but are not upholding that.
I am not sure that citizenship by birth to nonlegal immigrants is a smart thing. It is an issue of citizens with divided loyalty.
Is that still the case, that it’s sex-based or was that just an example? I’d have thought the feminists had targeted that gender disparity. But, interesting, thanks for the information.
>> “Under the current interpretation of the law, all babies born on U.S. soil are citizen by birth regardless of parents. This is solely by interpretation of the law.” <<
That is actually not true.
What you cited is just posturing by the news media. The parents must be here under legal circumstances with intent to establish citizenship before 14th ammendment citizenship is available to the child. IF they retain alegiance to their home country, such as tourists, then the child is not elligible for citizenship.
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