Born in the U.S.A.? There is no “Birthright Citizenship” in the U.S. Constitution

The TV “experts” are wrong. There is no “birthright citizenship” in the 14th amendment or anywhere else in the Constitution.

I think that many of you are catching on to something that I have been ranting about for several years; specifically, that nearly 100% of the alleged “experts” on television, including those on the supposedly “conservative” cable network, are suffering from a pernicious ailment. Symptoms include the inability to think critically, the incessant repetition of ridiculous clichés, and the desperate desire to fit in with the liberals who control their social circles. Regular listeners to The Teri O’Brien Show know that I have named this malady “East Coast Brain Rot,” and it has been on prominent display since Donald Trump released his excellent immigration plan last weekend.

Why do people like Dana Perino, Stephen Moore and any number of other commentators, some of whom actually claim to be lawyers, persist in saying that the 14th amendment mandates that we continue the suicidal practice of allowing illegal alien invaders to unilaterally grant citizenship to their spawn just by breaking the law? I don’t care whether they sneak across the border, or fly first class as part of a luxury “birth tourism” adventure, the notion that they have the right to confer citizenship on anyone, by deliberately, and with pre-meditation, violating our laws is idiotic and nonsensical on its face. Pay attention, Dana, Stephen, Judge Napolitano and the rest of you because I need to educate you. You are wrong about birthright citizenship. Ridding ourselves of this magnet for illegals does not require a Constitutional amendment. It requires only a statute passed by Congress, which has absolute authority over conferring citizenship.

Once again, when they are seeking to suck up to their liberal puppet masters, the mush-headed, East Coast Brain Rot afflicted ignore the unambiguous language of the Constitution. They cite the 14th amendment’s words: “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,” choosing to completely ignore the phrase “subject to the jurisdiction thereof.” If the authors of this amendment intended to confer citizenship on anyone born in the United States, they would not have needed to add the additional language. Even the genius talking heads on TV should be able to understand that.

As Prof. Edward J Erler, writing in National Review, explains:

[D}uring debate over the amendment, Senator Jacob Howard, the author of the citizenship clause, attempted to assure skeptical colleagues that the language was not intended to make Indians citizens of the United States. Indians, Howard conceded, were born within the nation’s geographical limits, but he steadfastly maintained that they were not subject to its jurisdiction because they owed allegiance to their tribes and not to the U.S. Senator Lyman Trumbull, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, supported this view, arguing that “subject to the jurisdiction thereof” meant “not owing allegiance to anybody else and being subject to the complete jurisdiction of the United States.” Jurisdiction understood as allegiance, Senator Howard explained, excludes not only Indians but “persons born in the United States who are foreigners, aliens, [or] who belong to the families of ambassadors or foreign ministers.” Thus, “subject to the jurisdiction” does not simply mean, as is commonly thought today, subject to American laws or courts. It means owing exclusive political allegiance to the U.S.

Nor was this the only legislation concerning birthright citizenship that Congress passed following the ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment. As mentioned above, there was almost unanimous agreement among its framers that the amendment did not extend citizenship to Indians. Although born in the U.S., they were not subject to the jurisdiction of the U.S. Beginning in 1870, however, Congress began to pass legislation offering citizenship to Indians on a tribe-by-tribe basis. Finally, in 1923, there was a universal offer to all tribes. Any Indian who consented could become a citizen. Thus Congress used its legislative authority under Section 5 of the Fourteenth Amendment to determine who was within the jurisdiction of the U.S. It could make a similar determination today, based on this legislative precedent, that children born in the U.S. to illegal aliens are not subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. A constitutional amendment is no more required today than it was in 1923.

If we elect a conservative, committed to American sovereignty, who understands that without a border, we don’t have a nation, we can make this happen, and join most of the nations on earth that don’t give citizenship to anyone born on their soil.

Why must pundits and politicians who are supposedly on our side, and by “our side,” I mean on the side of standing up for America and our values, including national sovereignty, constantly adopt the language and “facts” (read “fairy tales”) that liberals believe? Do they break out in a cold sweat thinking about not being able to hang out with the “cool kids” at the next cocktail party or think tank soirée? Or are they just intellectually stunted? Maybe there’s something in the water. Please comment below with your answer.

Cross-posted at Clash Daily


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  1. I think this liberal concept of citizenship was perpetuated by instances like the one I was recently involved in whereby at Jury Duty an Administrator asked me if I was a U.S. Citizen. I responded that I did not know. This sent him into a frenzy. You see, they expect everyone to naturally choose to be a citizen of the U.S. But the Slaughterhouse Cases show that a person can be a citizen of a state without being a citizen of the U.S. Thus, the water gets even murkier.

    The liberal mindset has become anyone that claims to be a U.S. citizen must be proven wrong, rather than showing they have a claim. It is acquiescence by the very people that should be requiring proof.

    If these people are allowed on juries, as I personally witnessed, could there be a cause of action for so many people that were convicted by a jury that was not made up of a “jury of his peers”.

    As you can see, while I concur with your assessment there is going to be HUGE ramifications.

    Might as well make it official and separate the states into two groups. We could call one The Union and the other The Confederation. That didn’t work out so well the first time, maybe it will work out the second time it is tried.

    • My first thought is “why couldn’t I have been there to watch Mensa mess with these pinheads?”
      My second is that I have thought often over the last 7 years or so that we could be headed for another civil war in the US, but recent events think we could see the Iranians start WWWIII first.

      • You, too, can make their heads explode. It’s easy. One day just show up at the jury room and tell them you want to do your civic duty. When they inform you of you not being “on the list”, just tell them you decided to come in instead of going to a baseball game. The best part- you could leave any time you wanted because you were not required to be there.

        They would try to send you away because you would be fouling up their paperwork, but then you could, like a liberal, question their motives- “Are you telling me only people the state chooses get to be on a jury? The state gets to pick the judge AND the jury?” Watching heads explode is more fun than scouring a bathroom any day.

        As for WWIII, I don’t believe the Iranians will start it. Obama started it with his speech at the Cairo University with his “I will stand with the Muslims if the wind blows me in that direction.” speech. Then he started the “Arab Spring.” The Iranian thing is just an extension of that.
        The real problem is we cannot live with liberalism. It has metastasized to the extent that excision will be necessary to save the host.

        • Of course, I agree with you. Obama, deliberately and for reasons I have repeated many times on the show, wants to enable the Iranians in their pursuit of nukes and superpower status. So he’s responsible.
          Yes, I don’t know how long we can exist as a majority being suffocated by the demands of liberal elitists. It’s going to be an interesting 10 years or so.

  2. I was under the impression that when one commits a crime they are not entitled to benefit from the fruits of that crime. Why should the unborn children of lawbreakers who have illegally crossed our borders be gifted with citizenship because their parents committed a crime? I don’t think that it’s justifiable to invoke constitutional amendments to reward the initial criminal activity. Criminal activity should be punished and denial of citizenship to the children of lawbreakers who illegally enter this country would be fitting.

    • The “denial” is already in the Constitution. The Congress needs to get it in gear. The whole thing is ridiculous!

      • The anchor baby phenomena is just another one of the many dubious things that have been gifted to the American people by activist SCOTUS judges intent on “transforming” this country to suit their personal ideas.

        • Yes, I think that’s where it came from, but no one is really sure, frankly. I’m still investigating that myself. More about what I find out on The Teri O’Brien Show.

          • It is my understanding that the entire premise of birthright citizenship for the children of illegal aliens is based upon a footnote inserted into a SCOTUS opinion in a 1982 case (Plyler v. Doe) by the liberal Justice Brennan.

  3. “It is my understanding that the entire premise of birthright citizenship for the children of illegal aliens is based upon a footnote inserted into a SCOTUS opinion in a 1982 case (Plyler v. Doe) by the liberal Justice Brennan.” -Robert A

    Let me take a stab at this.

    “(a) The illegal aliens who are plaintiffs in these cases challenging the statute may claim the benefit of the Equal Protection Clause, which provides that no State shall “deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

    While the state has a “duty to protect”, it is understood that duty is afforded to those that pledge “full faith and allegiance”. It is part of the contract. What we have is people (persons) who demand the protection of the law, but refuse to, or cannot, adhere to it.

    My knowledge of this citation is limited to the link supra which includes this disclaimer:

    Official Supreme Court case law is only found in the print version of the United States Reports. Justia case law is provided for general informational purposes only, and may not reflect current legal developments, verdicts or settlements. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site or information linked to from this site. Please check official sources.

    Thus, I would have to see the footnote you cite. But in any event, the case you reference was concerning illegal alien children being afforded schooling by a state (Texas). Texas could have billed the government of Mexico for that. They might not pay, but they certainly would of had a cause of action.

    • I have searched unsuccessfully for the text of that footnote. I have only heard others make reference to it by citing the decision. The more I search for it without locating it the more skeptical about its existence and content I become.

      • The footnote that people refer to comes from the 1982 decision Plyler v. Doe, which granted the children of illegals the right to attend public schools (thanks again, destructive, rogue federal courts.);however, I have found references, including some in the popular culture, to this “birthright citizenship” thing from the 1970’s, so I suspect it started pre-1982.

        • I believe that you are correct in that assumption Teri. I was still a young man in the 70’s and even though I did not completely understand what they were talking about, I remember many of my elders voicing discontent and resentment about the practice. I’m sure that Justice Brennan did not decide out of the blue to assist the children of millions of illegal aliens to gain US citizenship merely by crossing the border illegally. I suspect that might be the reason why he inserted it as a footnote and not in the body of the opinion itself. I find it a rather dubious foundation upon which to base such an important legal matter. If this footnote is truly the basis upon which birthright citizenship for the children of illegal aliens is built I think that it is classic example of the usurpation by the SCOTUS of a power that is granted exclusively to the Congress by the Constitution. It’s a pity that Congress continues to allow it to go unchallenged. From what I have seen the only solution to this problem that Congress has offered is to provide amnesty to all who have entered this country illegally. Not much of a solution by my standards.

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