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Natural Born Citizenship

When was the last time the U.S. Supreme Court addressed the meaning of the "natural born citizen"?

The Constitution in Article II (the Executive Branch), Section 1, paragraph 5 states:


No person except a natural born Citizen... shall be eligible to the Office of President;...



In the "Dred Scott versus Sanford", 60 U.S. 393 (1857) the Supreme Court majority ruled that the term "natural born citizen" referred to blood or lineage. The dissenting minority states that citizenship was acquired by place of birth. This opinion was overturned by the 14th Amendment to the Constitution in 1868, just eleven years later.

The Fourteenth Amendment, Section 1, Sentence 1 states:


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.

The 14th Amendment was ratified on July 9, 1868.



In the "United States versus Wong Kim Ark", 169 U.S. 649 (1898), the Supreme Court ruled that a person born within the jurisdiction of the United States to non-citizens ... is automatically a citizen.

In the "Afroyim versus Rush" 387 U.S. 253 (1967), the Supreme Court ruled the 14th Amendment completely controls the status of citizenship.

These cases have established from 1967 to today the establish guidelines for citizenship:


  • 14th Amendment controls the status of citizenship.
  • All persons born in the United States are citizens of the United States.
  • This applies to children born to legal and illegal residents.
  • This does not apply to children of foreign citizens employed in any diplomatic or official capacity


The "Child Citizenship Act of 2000" allows certain foreign-born, biological and adopted children, of American Citizens to acquire American citizenship automatically. The following rules apply:


  • Have at least one American Citizen parent by birth or naturalization;
  • Be under 18 years of age;
  • Live in the legal and physical custody of the American citizen parent;
  • Be admitted as an immigrant for lawful permanent residence.
  • Only a child who acquired citizenship at birth can get a birth certificate from an embassy or consulate.


Another section provides that children who do not acquire citizenship at birth can apply for citizenship. The following rules apply:


  • At least one parent of the child is an American citizen by birth or naturalization;
  • The American citizen or the parents of the American citizen (Child's grandparents) has been physically present in the United States for a total of five years, at least two of which are after the age of 14;
  • The child is under the age of eighteen (18);
  • The child lives abroad in the legal and physical custody of the American citizen parent and has been lawfully admitted into the United States as a nonimmigrant.


In Summary, The 14th Amendment states that illegal immigrant's children born on U.S. soil are automatically citizens. As seen above, children born to U.S. Citizens abroad can automatically be citizens at birth under certain rules or must meet other rules to become citizens.

Children born abroad to U.S. citizens, who are legally abroad and obeying the foreign countries rules and laws, do not have the same privileges as illegal immigrants to the United States.

So I pose the question: "For natural born citizens, born to illegal immigrants (aliens), who return to their parents native countries, do their children, born outside the U.S. in their new country, become eligible for U.S. citizenship under the same rules stated above?"

The answer is Yes, they can become U.S. Citizens! Will this lead to a growth of U.S. citizens springing up in foreign countries, eligible for all the benefits of citizenship?

In the 14th Amendment the words "Subject to the Jurisdiction" of the United States means "Subject to the Laws of the United States" and has been ruled as "Having exclusive allegiance to the United States". Not all who are subject to the laws of the United States owes allegiance to the United States. Oblivious, those illegally within our borders and hidden from the United States systems of laws cannot hold allegiance to the United States.

Are illegal immigrants under and subject to the laws of the United States? Have they renounced their allegiance to a foreign nation? If the State government and the Federal government do not know they exist in the United States, then how can they be subject to the laws of the United States and how could they have denounced allegiance to other nations?

How can the children born to illegal immigrants have more privileges and rights than those children born to citizens abroad?

Remember, Citizenship is a privilege and honor. Splitting your allegiance with another nation shows that you don't respect what you have in our Nation.

To correct this injustice, we must amend the 14th Amendment to only allow citizenship to children born to persons legally in the United States.

See the "Natural Born" listed under Amendments in the Menu selection above.