Monday, August 24, 2015

The Repeal of the 14th Amendment Is Not Needed To Solve the "Anchor Baby" Issue

Leave it to Donald Trump to start one firestorm after another regarding illegal immigration.  His latest is his promise to deport all illegals and their children; even if they were born in the U.S.

Of course, this has led to a chorus of denunciation because it would violate the 14th Amendment to the constitution which guarantees citizenship to anyone born on U.S. soil; and, you can't deport citizens even if their parents are here illegally.  Thus, the term "anchor babies" came to our lexicon because no one wants to separate parents from their children by deporting those parents.  The fact that "anchor babies" has become offensive is because the political left has made it so in an effort to promote amnesty and citizenship for illegals.

Others have commented that it would be a massive undertaking to override an amendment to the Constitution in order to address the problem.

Now, I have to admit that it has been decades since I read the 14th amendment, and like everybody else, I just remember that the first sentence does guarantee citizenship to any baby born here.  Here is the actual text of Section 1:
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.
Yes, it says what it says.  But, as many defenders of Trump have pointed out, most people neglect to recall Section 5 which is a one sentence article and simply states:
The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.
So, a new amendment is not needed.  Congress has the power to either let the first sentence stand as is, or limit it to exclude babies born to non-citizens.  Maybe the folks at the liberal-leaning Washington Post should actually read the whole law before they proclaim that "Donald Trump and Scott Walker want to repeal birthright citizenship. It's nearly impossible."

Also understand that the only reason the 14th Amendment exists is to insure that babies born to slaves and American Indians were citizens and to combat state laws that were attempting to deny citizenship to these individuals with things like "Black Codes".   So, the concept of "anchor babies" was never the original intent.  For this reason, I think that, if it was ever adjudicated by the Supreme Court, the intent of the law would override the extension to include "anchor babies".


14th Amendment of the Constitution:

Trump's Critics Are Wrong about the Fourteenth Amendment:

No, The 14th Amendment Doesn't Guarantee Birthright Citizenship:

Levin: Cruz, Trump, Sessions 'Are Right,' 14th Amendment Doesn't Mandate Birthright Citizenship:

Donald Trump and Scott Walker want to repeal birthright citizenship. It's nearly impossible:

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