The Difference Between a U.S. Citizen and a Natural Born Citizen

Many members of the political-media establishment are either deliberately misrepresenting facts for political reasons or they are simply ignorant of those facts, that is, the manner in which one becomes a citizen as opposed to the concept of natural born citizenship.

Those who equate “citizen” with “natural born citizen” often misinterpret Constitutional law and statute law, the latter meaning that Congress may pass laws only defining the manner in which one becomes a citizen, either citizen by birth or a naturalized citizen, not the Constitutional concept of natural born citizenship.

In addition, many people mistakenly cite English Common Law as the origin of the natural born citizen concept, which, in that regard, the Founders rejected; rather than its true origin, the codification of natural law described by Emerich de Vattel in his 1758 book “The Law of Nations.”


Article II, Section 1, Clause 5 states:

“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.”

Recognizing the Constitutional nature of the natural born citizen concept, there have been numerous attempts, in recent years, both by Democrats and Republicans, to amend the Article II “natural born citizen” clause, including:

January 14, 1975 – Democrat House Rep. Jonathon B. Bingham, [NY-22] introduced a constitutional amendment under H.J.R. 33: which called for the outright removal of the natural-born requirement for president found in Article II of the U.S. Constitution – “Provides that a citizen of the United States otherwise eligible to hold the Office of President shall not be ineligible because such citizen is not a natural born citizen.”

June 11, 2003 – Democrat House member Vic Snyder [AR-2] introduced H.J.R 59: in the 108th Congress – “Constitutional Amendment – Makes a person who has been a citizen of the United States for at least 35 years and who has been a resident within the United States for at least 14 years eligible to hold the office of President or Vice President.”

September 3, 2003 – Democrat Rep. John Conyers [MI] introduced H.J.R. 67: – “Constitutional Amendment – Makes a person who has been a citizen of the United States for at least 20 years eligible to hold the office of President.”

September 15, 2004 – Republican Rep. Dana Rohrabacher [CA-46] introduced H.J.R. 104: – “Constitutional Amendment – “Makes eligible for the Office of the President non-native born persons who have held U.S. citizenship for at least 20 years and who are otherwise eligible to hold such Office.”

According to Article II, Section I, Clause 5 of the U. S. Constitution, a candidate for the Presidency must be a “natural born citizen,” that is, a second generation American, a U.S. citizen, whose parents were also U.S. citizens at the time of the candidate’s birth.

That there is a difference between “citizen” and “natural born citizen” has been clear since the writing of the U.S. Constitution on September 17, 1787 and its ratification on June 21, 1788.

A first draft of what would become Article II, Section 1, Clause 5, submitted by Alexander Hamilton to the Constitutional Convention on June 18, 1787 stated:

“No person shall be eligible to the office of President of the United States unless he be now a Citizen of one of the States, or hereafter be born a Citizen of the United States.”

Fearing foreign influence on the President and Commander in Chief of the American military, the future first U.S. Supreme Court Justice, John Jay, on July 25, 1787, asked the convention presiding officer George Washington to strengthen the requirements for the Presidency:

“Permit me to hint, whether it would be wise and seasonable to provide a strong check to the admission of Foreigners into the administration of our national Government; and to declare expressly that the Command in Chief of the American army shall not be given to nor devolve on, any but a natural born Citizen.”

The term “or a Citizen of the United States at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution” referred to loyal Americans who lived in the thirteen colonies at the time of the Revolutionary War, thus establishing the first generation of United States “citizens,” upon which future “natural born” citizens would be created. The Founders, under Article II, allowed these original U.S. citizens to be eligible for the Presidency.

As understood by the Founders and as applied to the U.S. Constitution, the term “natural born citizen” derived its meaning less from English Common Law, than from Vattel’s “The Law of Nations.”

They knew from reading Vattel that a “natural born citizen” had a different standard from just “citizen,” for he or she was a child born in the country to two citizen parents (Vattel, Section 212 in original French and English translation).

That is the definition of a “natural born citizen,” as recognized by numerous U.S. Supreme Court and lower court decisions (The Venus, 12U.S. 253(1814), Shanks v. Dupont, 28 U.S. 242 (1830), Scott v. Sandford, 60 U.S. 393 (1856), Minor v. Happersett, 88 U.S. 162 (1875) , Ex parte Reynolds, 20 F. Cas. 582 (C.C.W.D. Ark 1879), United States v. Ward, 42 F. 320 (1890); Wong Kim Ark, 169 U.S. 649 (1898), Ludlam, Excutrix, & c., v. Ludlam, 26 N.Y. 356 (1863) and more) and the framers of the Civil Rights Act of 1866, the 14th Amendment, the Naturalization Act of 1795, 1798, 1802, 1885, and our modern 8 U.S.C. Sec. 1401.

There are historical arguments too numerous to include in a short article, which explain why the definition of “natural born subject,” as found in the English Common Law, was not used as the basis of “natural born citizen” in the U.S. Constitution because Great Britain was a monarchy and the new nation was a constitutional republic.

Legal precedent and interpretation leave no doubt regarding the meaning of “natural born citizen.”

The Venus, 12 U.S. 8 Cranch 253 253 (1814)

“The citizens are the members of the civil society; bound to this society by certain duties, and subject to its authority, they equally participate in its advantages. The natives or indigenes are those born in the country of parents who are citizens.”

Dred Scott v. Sandford, 60 U.S. 393 (1857)

“The citizens are the members of the civil society; bound to this society by certain duties, and subject to its authority, they equally participate in its advantages. The natives, or natural-born citizens, are those born in the country, of parents who are citizens.”

John Bingham, father of the 14th Amendment, which gave citizenship to American slaves after the Civil War, stated on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives in 1862:

“All from other lands, who by the terms of [congressional] laws and a compliance with their provisions become naturalized, are adopted citizens of the United States; all other persons born within the Republic, of parents owing allegiance to no other sovereignty, are natural born citizens.”

In 1866, Bingham also stated on the House floor:

“Every human being born within the jurisdiction of the United States of parents not owing allegiance to any foreign sovereignty is, in the language of your Constitution itself, a natural born citizen.”

Minor v. Happersett , 88 U.S. 162 (1875)

“The Constitution does not in words say who shall be natural-born citizens. Resort must be had elsewhere to ascertain that. At common law, with the nomenclature of which the framers of the Constitution were familiar, it was never doubted that all children born in a country of parents who were its citizens became themselves, upon their birth, citizens also. These were natives or natural-born citizens, as distinguished from aliens or foreigners. Some authorities go further and include as citizens children born within the jurisdiction without reference to the citizenship of their parents. As to this class there have been doubts, but never as to the first.”

United States v. Wong Kim Ark, 169 U.S. 649 (1898)

“At common law, with the nomenclature of which the framers of the Constitution were familiar, it was never doubted that all children, born in a country of parents who were its citizens, became themselves, upon their birth, citizens also. These were natives, or natural-born citizens, as distinguished from aliens or foreigners.”

As recently as September 2008, in a Michigan Law Review article entitled “Originalism and the Natural Born Citizen Clause,” Lawrence B. Solum, then John E. Cribbet Professor of Law at the University of Illinois College of Law, wrote:

“What was the original public meaning of the phrase that establishes the eligibility for the office of President of the United States? There is general agreement on the core of its meaning. Anyone born on American soil whose parents are citizens of the United States is a natural born citizen.”

Citizen parents, plural.

Just as the Presidential oath of office is unique “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution,” the eligibility requirements for President are equally unique, to ensure allegiance and prevent foreign influence at the highest levels of government.

I think the Founders had anticipated the mess in which we find ourselves today. (For more from the author of “The Difference Between a U.S. Citizen and a Natural Born Citizen” please click HERE)

Watch a recent interview with the author below:

Follow Joe Miller on Twitter HERE and Facebook HERE.

  • RWS

    A good analysis.

    So it is clear that candidate Cruz, born in a foreign land to a foreign father is ineligible for the presidency. And it is equally clear that the tens of millions of children born here of an illegally or transitorily resident parent are not citizens; yet I expect that the anti-liberals, most Democrats and some others, will continue to camouflage their disruptive propaganda as good and settled law.

    • 946towguy

      The analysis is incorrect.

      The author specifically misrepresented the ruling in Wong Kim Ark, which found that he was a natural born citizen at birth, being born in the USA of 2 lawfully permanent alien parents.

      Also, Article 1 Section 8 empowers the CONGRESS to define the rules for citizenship and naturalization.

      Furthermore, Title 8 United States Code, as amended by acts of the CONGRESS, and signed by the POTUS, establishes the laws of Immigration, Naturalization and Citizenship, including the definition of ‘Natural Born Citizen.

      Specifically, * USC 1401 G provides that: “(g)a person born outside the geographical limits of the United States and its outlying possessions of parents one of whom is an alien, and the other a citizen of the United States who, prior to the birth of such person, was physically present in the United States or its outlying possessions for a period or periods totaling not less than five years, at least two of which were after attaining the age of fourteen years:

      As such, it is clear that Cruz is a natural born citizen.

      • nmgene

        946 its obvious you cant read and understand what you are reading, Can not be a natural born citizen if both parents are not citizens. That is the way the founding fathers wanted it and put it in the Constitution. Anyone born in the USA who has a parent that is a citizen is a citizen NOT a natural born citizen !!!!!!!

        • 946towguy

          There is no such definition of citizenship in the Constitution.

          And, by your definition, nobody would be a natural born citizen, since the original citizens were born of foreigners.

          Article 1 section 8 specifically enumerates the power, “To establish a uniform rule of naturalization,” which includes the authority to define citizenship.

          Amendment 14, SCOTUS precedent and acts of Congress create the current definition. Parts of that definition is the codification of rulings such as Wong Kim Ark.

          • carlosperdue

            Bzzzz. Wrong again. Art 1 Sec 8 PP4 gives congress the power “To establish an uniform Rule of NATURALIZATION…”, not citizenship in general. Only immigrants are naturalized. Native-born & natural-born citizens are NOT naturalized. They’re citizens from birth.

            If they meant to give congress unlimited power to “define citizenship”, it would say that instead of “establish a uniform rule of *naturalization*.

            Moreover, unlimited power to “define citizenship” would allow congress to subvert the presidential eligibility clause and do other mischief, including redefining the 14th Amendment. The principle you would like to establish in order to make Obama, Cruz, or Rubio — or the spawn of illegal invaders for that matter — eligible to run for President, or whatever agenda allegedly justifies twisting the intent of the Constitution in this case, would be dangerous and subversive indeed to other parts of the Constitution as well.

          • 946towguy

            The SCOTUS has never ruled that the naturalization clause means what you wish it to mean. Quite to the contrary.

            Also, the citizenship clause of the 14th Amendment cannot be overturned by a simple act of the Congress, as it is an Amendment to the Constitution.

            The SCOTUS ruled in Elk v. Wilkins, 112 us 94 (1884) that Indians were non-citizens under Amendment 14. It is clearly not a blanket grant of citizenship and Congress has the power to grant or deny birthright citizenship to those who are not subjects of U.S. jurisdiction AND residents.

            In Wong Kim Ark (169 US 649, (1898)), the SCOTUS ruled that, “A child born in the United States, of parents of Chinese descent, who,
            at the time of his birth, are subjects of the Emperor of China, but have
            a permanent domicil and residence in the United States, and are there
            carrying on business, and are not employed in any diplomatic or official
            capacity under the Emperor of China, becomes at the time of his birth a
            citizen of the United States, by virtue of the first clause of the
            Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution,”

            That means that children born in the USA, of parents who are both lawful permanent resident aliens, who are not otherwise unqualified, are natural born citizens.

            It does not mean that children of illegal aliens, children of lawfully present non-resident aliens, or children of foreign governments are citizens. There is nothing in the law or Constitution that makes this so.

            The SCOTUS has recognized the authority of the Congress to define citizenship, including natural born citizenship in many decisions, including Wong Kim Ark.

            Subsequently, the Indian Citizenship act of 1924 declared that Indians born in the USA were citizens. (Currently 8USC 1401 b)

            The immigration act of 1952 created and consolidated the immigration and naturalization laws and court decisions into 8 USC and defined who is a non-immigrant, an immigrant a national, a citizen and a natural born citizen.

            The immigration act of 1965 contains the current definitions of natural born citizen, derived citizen, naturalized citizen and national.

            SO, HAVING GIVEN ALL THIS BACKGROUND:

            Congress has the authority, limited by the 14th Amendment, to define who is a citizen at birth (Natural Born Citizen)

            Congress created the current definition of natural born citizenship in 1965.

            The mother of ‘Ted’ Cruz, Eleanor Elizabeth (Barragh) Wilson is a natural born citizen from Connecticut. She was born in Connecticut of parents, both of whom were citizens born in Connecticut.

            The father of ‘Ted’ Cruz, Raphael Cruz was born in Cuba in 1939. He came to the USA as a student in 1959 and was granted asylum status in 1961. He would have been required to either apply for a green card after 1 year or leave, so it is apparent that he was granted permanent residence status sometime between 1962 and 1964.

            The 1965 INA was passed in 1965.

            He met the mother of ‘Ted’ in 1969, in New Orleans Louisiana. The two were soon married and they traveled on business, to Canada, she as a citizen and he as a lawful permanent resident alien.

            Ted Cruz was born in 1970, meeting the definition of natural born citizen under 8 USC 1401 g:

            “a person born outside the geographical limits of the United States and its outlying possessions of parents one of whom is an alien, and the other a citizen of the United States who, prior to the birth of such person, was physically present in the United States or its outlying possessions for a period or periods totaling not less than five years, at least two of which were after attaining the age of fourteen years:”

          • carlosperdue

            Can you ever stop lying and twisting? Regardless of any Supreme Court decision or code written by congress, the fact remains that the Constitution did NOT give congress the power to “define citizenship”. It gave the power to *NATURALIZE*, i.e., grant citizenship to people who otherwise would be citizens of another country. AKA, IMMIGRANTS.

          • 946towguy

            The power, “To establish a uniform rule of naturalization” includes the authority to define who is a citizen at birth. The requirement is that the rules must be uniform so as not to discriminate against one State in favor of another.

          • carlosperdue

            Still lying, or just extremely obtuse?

            verb (used with object), naturalized, naturalizing.
            1. to confer upon (an alien) the rights and privileges of a citizen.
            Random House Dictionary, (c) 2016

            verb
            1. (transitive) to give citizenship to (a person of foreign birth)
            Collins English Dictionary (c) 2012

            v. “admit (an alien) to rights of a citizen,” 1550s (implied in naturalized), from natural (adj.) in its etymological sense of “by birth” + -ize; in some instances from Middle French naturaliser, from natural. Of things, from 1620s; of plants or animals, from 1796. Related: Naturalizing.
            Online Etymology Dictionary, (c) 2010 Douglas Harper

            naturalization definition
            The process by which a foreign citizen becomes a citizen of a new country. Millions of immigrants to the United States have become American citizens. Requirements for naturalization in the United States include residency for several years, ability to communicate in English, demonstrated knowledge of American history and government, and a dedication to American values that includes no membership in subversive organizations, such as the Communist party.
            The American Heritage New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition, Copyright © 2005 Houghton Mifflin Company

            As any honest, intelligent American conservative knows, the power to natural-IZE relates only to granting citizenship to the foreign born and to aliens. It does not imply the power to define natural born citizen.

          • wandamurline

            Naturalization is different from natural born.

          • 946towguy

            The power delegated to congress in article 1 section 8 includes the power to define who is a natural born citizen. This has been upheld by the SCOTUS.

          • CSN

            Same Supreme Court that makes it legal to butcher unborn babies, and defined black Americans as non-persons, and unborn babies as non-persons. Great! Another misinterpreted law upheld by the destruction demolation crew which calls themselves Supreme.

          • TruthToBeTold

            You’re confusing US Code 8 Section 1401 “citizen” with Article 2 “natural born citizen.”

            Both terms are used in Article 2 Sec. 1 Clause 5 of the United States Constitution, have you not read it? They are not the same and do NOT have the same meaning.

            If you were a “citizen” alive at the time of the adoption of the Constitution as the Constitution specifically requires, you were eligible for President. This is considered the Grandfather Clause in Article 2. This allowed the Founding Fathers and the citizenry at that time to be POTUS because they were either born British or with some other foreign citizenship at birth. However, they wanted to protect the future and only allow someone that didn’t have foreign citizenship at birth as commander of the U.S. Army. Hence a “natural born citizen.”

            Read Article 2 Sec. 1 Cl. 5 for yourself…

            United States Constitution Article 2, Section 1, Clause 5:

            “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.”

            And you keep citing *DICTA in the wong case NOT Precident. You are Wong about Wong. The case determined U.S. “citizen” not “natural born citizen”

          • 946towguy

            No, you are wrong on all counts.

            In Wong Kim Ark, the author of the above editorial is quoting dicta, while I am quoting the FIRST SENTENCE OF THE DECISION SYLLABUS. The case determined that Wong Kim Ark was a natural born citizen, otherwise known as, ” at the time of his birth a citizen of the United States.”

            You are getting confused by the language of Art 2, Sec 1 Cl 5, which allowed grandfathering those who were formerly British Subjects who had become citizens of the new nation and had lived here for at least 14 years. Otherwise several of the founding fathers would be ineligible.

          • TruthToBeTold

            Again… Its obvious you don’t know how to cite case law. Stop embarrassing yourself. The ruling is a “CITIZEN” not a “natural born citizen.” Like I said you are citing *DICTA not the actual ruling. Read the actual ruling for yourself for the first time… SMH.

            U.S. Supreme Court
            United States v. Wong Kim Ark, 169 U.S. 649 (1898)

            No. 18

            Argued March 5, 8, 1897
            Decided March 28, 1898

            169 U.S. 649

            APPEAL FROM THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

            FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA

            Syllabus

            A child born in the United States, of parents of Chinese descent, who, at the time of his birth, are subjects of the Emperor of China, but have a permanent domicil and residence in the United States, and are there carrying on business, and are not employed in any diplomatic or official capacity under the Emperor of China, becomes at the time of his birth a citizen of the United States, by virtue of the first clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution,

          • CSN

            You’re citing naturalization not natural born.

      • RWS

        Thanks for cluing me in on 8 U.S.C. 1401. It explicitly identifies “nationals and citizens of the United States at birth”, however, not “natural born citizen”. Without both reading and Shepardizing Wong, however, I’m unsure whether “national and citizen” can possibly be held to be Constitutionally identical to “natural born citizen”. I suspect that it cannot.

        • 946towguy

          Yes, the phrase “Nationals and citizens at birth’ is synonymous with ‘Natural Born Citizen’ as it is identical to the verbiage used in Wong Kim ARk.

          • carlosperdue

            Sure thing. Reality check. In what universe would the Framers of the Constitution and the 14th Amendment have made the spawn of illegal aliens, even invading soldiers and occupiers, eligible to run for President of the USA?

            The open-immigration chamberboys are so deep into pseudo-sophisticate Rube Goldberg legal priest mumbo jumbo, they can’t see when they fail the most basic laugh tests.

          • 946towguy

            What are you going on about? Non-sequitur?

            8 USC 1401 specifies 8 categories of natural born citizens, in subsections a through h.

            The children of illegal aliens or non-resident legal aliens, born on U.S. soil are NOT ‘a person born in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof’, pursuant to the Elk decision and are NOT natural born citizens under the 14th Amendment, nor under 8 USC 1401 a.

            The law states that the Secretary of State MAY GRANT NATURALIZATION to such persons.

          • StingraySFO

            Naturalization is not Natural-Born, no matter how anyone attempts to define it.

          • StingraySFO

            Wong Kim Ark was incorrectly construed. Numerous legal scholars have verified that fact.

          • 946towguy

            There are those who have misquoted Wong Kim Ark to claim that children born in the USA of illegal aliens are natural born citizens, when that is not what the decision says.

            Wong Kim Ark dealt with a case where both parents were lawfully admitted aliens, permanently living in and conducting business in San Francisco, California. After they had established lawful residence with the full permission of U.S. Customs, they had a child, who was born in San Francisco. This child spent his entire childhood in California, then travel led on business on more than one occasion, to China, leaving and returning as an American. Upon return from a trip, a Customs agent claimed he was not a citizen and denied him entry. The SCOTUS disagreed. The Ruling was (paraphrase in current language) that pursuant to the 14th Amendment, Wong Kim Ark was a ‘citizen at birth’ (Natural Born Citizen), because he was born within the USA and was, by virtue of his parents lawful permanent residence status, ‘Subject to the Jurisdiction’ of the United States and the State of California.

            This decision is codified in 8 USC 1401 A.

      • carlosperdue

        Bzzzz. Wrong. The Constitution empowers congress to determine who gets to become a citizen. It does NOT empower congress to redefine “natural born citizen” contrary to the intent of the framers. If citizenship were totally up to congress, the citizenship definition in the 14th Amendment would not have been necessary in the first place, and would be vulnerable in the second place.

        Moreover, congress can pass any legislation it pleases, but that does not make any legislation it passes constitutional.

        • 946towguy

          The power is specifically enumerated in article 1 section 8.
          The 14th Amendment guaranteed citizenship to the freed slaves that could not be revoked by a later act of congress.

          • carlosperdue

            Nice try. You do realize everyone can simply read the plain language of that section for themselves? Art 1 Sec 8 PP4 gives congress the power “To establish an uniform Rule of NATURALIZATION…”, not citizenship in general. Only immigrants are naturalized. Native-born and natural-born citizens are NOT naturalized. They are citizens from birth. Of course it does NOT grant unlimited power to “define citizenship”, otherwise congress could subvert the presidential eligibility clause and do other mischief, such as redefining the 14th Amendment. The principle you are trying to create would be very dangerous and subversive indeed to other parts of the Constitution.

          • StingraySFO

            The SCOTUS has, in many cases, followed the BINDING PRECEDENT set in Minor v Happersett with the majority construction stating that “…[A]ll children born in a country of parents who were its citizens
            became themselves, upon their birth, citizens also. These were natives,
            or natural-born citizens, as distinguished from aliens or foreigners…”
            The use of plurality makes clear the definition is inclusive of the requirement of BOTH parents to be US Citizens, having met other requirements.
            Very clear, very precise.
            Get over it!

          • 946towguy

            You are inverting your logic to use that particular definition as exclusive, rather than inclusive.

            The fact is that there are multiple inclusive definitions of being a natural born citizen, which are codified in 8 USC 1401. Some of these additional definitions go as far back as 1790. Meeting one definition does not exclude others meeting the definition in a different subsection any more than multiple definitions of grand theft.
            The fact that horse theft is grand theft does not make aircraft theft a petty theft and the fact that aircraft did not exist in 1790 has no bearing on the matter.

          • carlosperdue

            What a crock.

            Article 1, Section 8, Paragraph 4: “To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization”.

            NATURALIZATION. Only immigrants need to be naturalized. Natural born citizens are not naturalized. They are citizens from birth.

            If congress had the constitutional right to redefine everything related to citizenship, than they could redefine it so Kim Jong-un could be “considered as” a natural born citizen and run for president. Give me a frigging break.

          • 946towguy

            Well, John Adams, who was the Pro Tempore of the the First Congress, was one of the drafters of the Constitution and subsequently became the Second President, along with George Washington clearly did not agree with your interpretation.

            Otherwise Adams would not have passed and Washington would not have signed the naturalization act of 1790.

            It is clearly obvious that the power “To establish an uniform rule of naturalization” includes the authority to define who is a natural born citizen. This was clear to the First Congress and it was clear to several of the subsequent Congresses, and it has been clear to the SCOTUS. Currently, those definitions are contained in 8 USC.

          • carlosperdue

            That does not follow. Congress does all sorts of unconstitutional stuff. Doesn’t make it right. I suspect the reasoning surrounding the passage and R&R of the 1790 act will become clear in the reasonably near future. You have not provided it. All you have done is provided ridiculous logic and dangerously subversive conclusions for which I don’t think you’re going to find a whole lot of takers around here.

          • Jim Delaney

            “Clearly obvious”? Afraid not, 946.

          • Jim Delaney

            Well said, Carlos.

          • Jim Delaney

            The 14th dealt with the citizenship of slaves. It did not deal with natural born citizen.

        • reggiec

          The CONTINUING problem is that The Constitution did not adequately define “natural born”. Many claim that the Founding Fathers “believed” this or that but they did not actually or adequately define the term.
          As has been done in the past; SCOTUS will eventually rule on what the meaning that was intended or create an activist definition based on their personal or political beliefs just like they have done so many times in the past.

          • Jim Delaney

            Ah, yes. Let’s again submissively look to the great oracles from Mt. Olympus in DC for their divine judgement in this matter. I shouldn’t have to say that the highly politicized Supreme Court is the absolute worst place to look for a faithful interpretation of NBC or any other heady constitutional matter.

          • RWS

            You are right, Mr. Delaney: the federal Supreme Court has become even more political than it was in the not distant past. Nevertheless, it has the Constitutional powers to apply and, if need be, to interpret the Constitution.

            As I indicated above, a government succeeds in honest governance only if it comprise honest (and intelligent) men and women.

          • HCUA

            It seems that lots of folks do not understand the term, nature, or natural. For instance, a person born in New Zealand is, by nature, a citizen of that country, and not a citizen of Australia, which is nearby.
            Likewise, the kangaroo is, by nature, a product of Australia, not any other country in the world.
            An African lion, by it’s nature, has to be from Africa. That is it’s natural habitat.
            What is so difficult about understanding the term, natural-born citizen? He or she is, by nature, someone born to two AMERICAN parents on this soil, except for embassies or military bases overseas which , by treaty, are considered American soil.
            Natural-born. It is clear to a thinking person, despite all the obfuscations which are thrown up to to make Cruz and Rubio eligible, putting them in the same category as the usurper, whose father was a British citizen, and also ineligible, besides being born in Kenya, and not in two Hawaiian hospitals, as claimed, one of which did not exist at the time of his afterbirth.

      • TruthToBeTold

        You are citing *DICTA not Precident. Look up the difference. The ruling was that Ark was a “citizen” NOT a ‘natural born citizen.

        • 946towguy

          YOU are wrong. I am citing the SYLLABUS, which is the actual decision of the court. The ruling was that Wong Kim Ark was a natural born citizen, being “at the time of his birth a citizen of the United States.”

          • TruthToBeTold

            Its obvious you don’t know how to cite case law. Stop embarrassing yourself. The ruling is a “CITIZEN” not a “natural born citizen.” Like I said you are citing *DICTA not the actual ruling. Read the actual ruling for yourself for the first time… SMH.

            U.S. Supreme Court
            United States v. Wong Kim Ark, 169 U.S. 649 (1898)

            No. 18

            Argued March 5, 8, 1897
            Decided March 28, 1898

            169 U.S. 649

            APPEAL FROM THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

            FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA

            Syllabus

            A child born in the United States, of parents of Chinese descent, who, at the time of his birth, are subjects of the Emperor of China, but have a permanent domicil and residence in the United States, and are there carrying on business, and are not employed in any diplomatic or official capacity under the Emperor of China, becomes at the time of his birth a citizen of the United States, by virtue of the first clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the Constitution,

          • Jim Delaney

            946,
            You’re in error, but not surprising given all the verbiage here and elsewhere on this subject.

            US v Wong Kim Ark (1898) cited and quoted Minor v Happersett’s definition of a natural born citizen and its source as coming from common law and held that a child born in the US to alien parents, who are neither foreign ambassadors nor military invaders, was under principles laid down by colonial English common law born subject

          • carlosperdue

            Not just not ambassadors or military invaders, but implicitly here LEGALLY. Permanent residents is generally known to mean legal residents, not illegal aliens, visa overstays, etc.

            Ark is bad enough. Let’s not make it worse.

    • wandamurline

      And it is also evident that Rubio born to two non-citizens is also ineligible as is Obama.

      • RWS

        Yes, he’d be ineligible under the original meaning of “natural born citizen”. However, “towguy” points out that the Wong Kim Ark case (before the federal Supreme Court 119 years ago) changed that original meaning — and there have been further modifications since.

        I believe all those modifications, even the Wong case, to themselves be unconstitutional as inconsistent to the clear original meaning. However, our American custom is to treat rulings by the federal Supreme Court as final and inalterable, except by Constitutional amendment: so we are stuck in the grimly amusing situation of needing to amend the Constitution to confirm what the unamended Constitution itself states.

        But, then, what do I know? I’m a simple lawyer, not a professor of Constitutional law at an illiberal law school nor a judge of the Supreme Court.

        Probably nothing will be done to stop (let alone reverse!) any of this seemingly deliberate dissolution of the Great Republic.

        • wandamurline

          The Supremes do a lot of things that are not constitutional….like….changing the wording of Obamacare from penalty to tax…..only Congress makes law….even though the POS president and Supremes think that they can….and they unconstitutionally gave the right to marry to sodomites when the constitution DOES NOT cover behaviors or choices….not to mention that they have allowed 55 million unborn babies to be murdered since the 60’s, and they took religion out of school over one person’s objection…..I hold nothing for the Supremes….two judges, Kagan and Ginsberg, were out performing same sex marriages while this was going on the agenda, but refused to recuse themselves….Kagan refused to recuse herself on Obamacare, even though she wrote the book on defending it while working for Obozo. What America needs is a Constitutional Amendment that has term limits, and gives the American people a RETENTION VOTE on all unelected judges every four years….to make them accountable for their decisions and that decisions have consequences.

          • RWS

            I hate the idea of term limits — we voters should have full freedom of choice, and elected politicians should have self-discipline — but have begun to realize that they may be necessary.

            I’m not yet settled about the idea of a retention vote. We do not want judges to be influenced by political considerations. Perhaps such a vote every ten or twelve years?

          • Jim Delaney

            Term Limits was one of the greatest oversights–in addition to inadequate checks on the Supreme Court–of our Founders. They foresaw shortcomings and provided us an amendment processs to address those shortcomings.

          • carlosperdue

            Term limits is the irresponsible voter’s easy money solution for everything. It throws the babies out with the bathwater and replaces them with even dirtier, murkier water. See California, which has had term limits since 1990. There is no substitute for doing your duty as a citizen to hold your legislators accountable, or a legislator to hold judges and presidents accountable. We have elections, and we have impeachment.

          • Jim Delaney

            As our Founders clearly understood (Madison, Franklin, Adams, et. al), a constitutional republic CANNOT survive without a virtuous people. Our “representatives”, for better or for worse, mirror that awful reality.

          • carlosperdue

            Yep. And there is no “easy money”, deceptively attractive, magic formula to get around that, that won’t actually make it worse. e.g. California.

            Why do Republicans love the “perfect formula” that will supposedly make everything will work perfectly without citizens having to sacrifice? You’ve seen the emails, basically “ten perfect formulas that will make everything work perfectly without ever having to lift a finger again.”

          • Jim Delaney

            Thus, the post-constitutional period is upon us. What will WE do about it?

        • carlosperdue

          “However, our American custom is to treat rulings by the federal Supreme Court as final and inalterable, except by Constitutional amendment”

          Well, that custom is dishonorable, perverse and unconstitutional. You take an oath to defend the Constitution, no to “obey the Supreme Court” regardless of how patently subversive a decision may be. If “obey” were the intent of the oath, it would’ve been written that way. If a Supreme Court decision is made in bad faith, it is your duty to disobey it, ignore it, and undermine it. Indeed, if you are a federal legislator, your duty is to impeach.

          • Jim Delaney

            Right on, Carlos!!!!!!

          • RWS

            I can agree with you from a moral standpoint, Carlos. Regrettably, morality and American law increasingly diverge.

            We may remember John Adams’s words: “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” (Our second federal president under the present Constitution meant “religious” in the sense common in the English-speaking world of the Enlightenment: Christian, and specifically what now would be called Evangelical or “Protestant” Christian.) I see the chief cause of the collapse of our republic in spiritual rot of the populace: certainly the invasion of the country, the increase in governmental power, and the profligacy of its elected officials all are immediate causes, but these are castigations which likely would not exist were not the people unfaithful.

    • Michael Fayko

      So is Rubio both of his parents where Cuban and did not obtain American citizenship until he was 4

      • RWS

        We agree. After the string of foolhardy judicial and administrative decisions essentially granting “birthright citizenship” to American-born children of illegal immigrants, however, I have no confidence that the courts would agree with us.

  • Armycombatvet

    The muslim illegally occupying our White House didn’t have “parents” who were both citizens, therefore he is an impostor and should be immediately arrested along with all of his enablers!

  • barb47

    Madison referred to the Law of Nation several times so he knew about it…Vattel

  • carlosperdue

    From a loyal conservative American:

    There has only been one definition of Natural Born Citizen in this nation (until very recently). While crafting the Constitution, the Founders had it in their hands, in an internationally recognized reference book titled “Law of Nations”.

    “The citizens are the members of the civil society; bound to this society by certain duties, and subject to its authority, they equally participate in its advantages. The natives, or natural-born citizens, are those born in the country, of parents who are citizens.” – Law of Nations, Emerich de Vattel (Official English Translation, still in use today)

    This book was first published in French in 1758. The first English printing was in 1760. By 1780 it was a textbook in universities throughout the USA. First American printing in 1787, same year Congress crafted the Constitution.

    In 1775 before the Declaration of Independence was ratified, this book was known to the Founders and Benjamin Franklin obtained copies for use by Congress:

    “I am much obliged by the kind present you have made us of your edition of Vattel. It came to us in good season, when the circumstances of a rising state make it necessary frequently to consult the Law of Nations. Accordingly, that copy which I kept has been continually in the hands of the members of our congress…”
    – Benjamin Franklin’s letter to Charles W.F. Dumas, Dec 1775

    Franklin’s copies were likely in French, the international language of the time. The French version stated, “Les naturels, ou indigenes, sont ceux qui sont nes dans le pays, de parens citoyens”

    Literal: “The natural, or indigenous, are those who are born in the country, of parents who are citizens”

    The meaning is the same as the translation that is still in print and in use by the US Supreme Court when ruling on Constitutional matters, most recently in 2012…

    US Supreme Court, ARIZONA ET AL v. U.S. (2012) “As a sovereign, Arizona has the inherent power to exclude persons from its territory, subject only to those limitations expressed in the constitution or constitutionally imposed by Congress. That power to exclude has long been recognized as inherent in sovereignty. Emer de Vattel’s seminal 1758 treatise on the Law of Nations stated: “The sovereign may forbid the entrance of his territory either to foreigners in general, or in particular cases, or to certain persons, or for certain particular purposes, according as he may think it advantageous to the state. There is nothing in all this, that does not flow from the rights of domain and sovereignty: every one is obliged to pay respect to the prohibition; and whoever dares violate it, incurs the penalty decreed to render it effectual.” The Law of Nations, bk. II, ch. VII, Section 94, p. 309 (B. Kapossy & R. Whatmore eds. 2008).”

    There was no other documented meaning of “Natural Born Citizen” available to the Founders. That’s why they saw no need to debate the meaning when making it a Constitutional requirement. But it was NOT in the original draft. Alexander Hamilton had first proposed that a person need only be born a citizen to qualify…

    “No person shall be eligible to the office of President of the United States unless he be now a Citizen of one of the States, or hereafter be born a Citizen of the United States.” – initial proposal

    Then came John Jay’s warning about foreign influence – since a person born a Citizen on US soil to a foreign parent was still, by foreign law, also a subject to that foreign country. For example, the child of a British Subject, born on US soil, is still Subject to the King according to English common law. England had been capturing Americans from ships and pressing them into the English Navy as British Subjects. The War of 1812 was fought, in part, to get England from backing off from that. During the war, the US required that all the officers and 3/4 of the seamen on US ships be Natural Born Citizens, to deprive England of any legitimate claim of legal authority over the crew, as well as any legal basis to hang US persons as traitors to the King if captured in war.

    Throughout the history of this nation, the meaning of Natural Born Citizen has been clear. The parents must be Citizens and the child could not be born on foreign soil. This ensured that by jus soli and jus sanguinis, no foreign nation could have legal claim, therefore foreign influence, over someone who might take the office of President.

    “If it was intended that anybody who was a citizen by birth should be eligible, it would only have been necessary to say, “no person, except a native-born citizen”; but the framers thought it wise, in view of the probable influx of European immigration, to provide that the president should at least be the child of citizens owing allegiance to the United States at the time of his birth.” – “NATURAL-BORN CITIZEN OF THE UNITED STATES: ELIGIBILITY FOR THE OFFICE OF PRESIDENT” (Albany Law Journal Vol. 66 (1904-1905))

    When Obama was allowed to take office, the 20th Amendment to the US Constitution was violated. It prohibits him from taking office until he has ‘qualified’, yet Obama’s lawyers were fighting to prevent his qualification from being legally resolved. Now, Ted Cruz is being lined up to follow in his footsteps.

    Yet another key protection of the US Constitution is being systematically eliminated by the leadership of both parties.

    BOHICA”

    My reply: “But what about kids born overseas to U.S. citizen soldiers? Doesn’t seem fair.”

    His response:

    “Unfortunately, they are not born on US soil. They are born under the laws of a foreign nation. So, there is the foreign entanglement. They are not eligible.

    What you say about it being ‘not fair’ is a valid concern that affected the Founders as well.

    After the Constitution was written, they created the 1790 Naturalization Act. In it, they allowed that a person born overseas to American Citizens would be ‘considered as’ a natural born citizen.

    Ambassadors such as Jefferson and Franklin were spending years abroad with family, potentially having children, and wanted their own children to be eligible. But, law and reason won out and the extension was repealed in the 1795 Naturalization Act.

    The 1790 Naturalization Act had stated “And 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”. This added a consideration that was not in the Constitutionally understood meaning, otherwise it would have been redundant. It only allowed those children to be “considered as” natural born citizens, because they are not.

    With that repealed in 1795, the only remaining definition is the one known to the Founders when they wrote the Constitution: “The natives, or natural-born citizens, are those born in the country, of parents who are citizens.” – Law of Nations

    Obama knew he was not eligible. That’s why he had teams of lawyers fighting to block resolution of his qualifications. When he took office on Jan 20, 2009, the US Government was overthrown by a coup d’etat. Something to think about.

    Now we see Cruz & Rubio also trying to take that office, taking advantage of the (de facto) elimination of the Constitution’s prohibition against their doing so.”

    And we see alleged conservatives acting like Democrats, willing to defecate on the Constitution to advance themselves, their agendas, and their favorite candidates.

    • JosephinaAngelina

      Boy, Washington and the other framers who signed the 1790 Act must have been dumb as bricks, passing a law that contradicted Vattel’s definition of natural born citizen. I’m sure glad we have constitutional geniuses like yourself to straighten them out.

      • 946towguy

        The SCOTUS has recognized that the Congress has the power to create or change the definition. The current definition was amended in 1965 and is contained in 8 USC 1401. Subsection G specifically applied to Cruz, as he was born outside the USA of a citizen mother who grew up in the USA and a legal alien father.

        • Jim Delaney

          1401 is statutory law and, therefore, inapplicable. It can’t trump American common law and Natural Law as understood by the Founders. Also, courts cannot undo original intent, although one wouldn’t suspect that is the case.

          In truth, courts cannot overturn original intent, but Congress may offer up a clarification or offer up a constitutional amendment. OF course, the States can also amend the Constitution per Art V. Also, the individual State secretaries of state can, if not specifically prohibited by their respect State legislature review a candidate’s eligibility before permitting his or her name to appear on the ballot.

          Handing such an important matter to 9 unelected, faithless, unaccountable, blacked-robed judicial oligarchs is the last place we should look for a constitutional resolution of such a hugely important matter.

          • 946towguy

            You should try reading the Constitution:

            Article 1 Section 1, “All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.”

            Acts of Congress authorized by Article 1 section 8 trump common and natural law.

            It was the original intent that the congress have the enumerated power to establish uniform rules of naturalization.

          • Jim Delaney

            Art I Sec 8 does not clearly empower Congress to re-define “natural born citizen”. American common law and Natural Law, the latter from which all of our natural rights are derived (not gov’t), can never be trumped by federal or state governments. If that were the case, bye-bye our God-given basic rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

          • 946towguy

            Have you ever heard of the Supremacy Clause (Art6 Cl2)?

            Yes, the Constitution does trump natural and common law. Federal Statutes passed under the authority of an enumerated power of Congress and not prohibited by the Constitution also trump natural and common law.

          • Jim Delaney

            God-given natural rights can never be trumped by statutory law. The Founders were very clear about this to prevent gov’t from justifying usurpation of our unalienable rights. Natural rights are untouchable/unassailable by any law.

            Also, to be clear, the intent of the Supremacy Clause–so often mangled by folks, sometimes deliberately & somethings inadvertently–was to codify that those powers not specifically granted to the federal gov’t in the Constitution or specifically prohibited to the States are reserved to the States or to the People alone. Federal powers are enumerated and, by original design, very limited; State powers are essentially unlimited beyond those specifically granted to the federal gov’t.

          • 946towguy

            You are confusing the supremacy clause with the 10th amendment and to a certain degree, the 9th.

            The supremacy clause guarantees that the Constitution and the treaties which pre-existed and were binding prior to the adoption thereof, are the supreme law of the land.

            If natural law was unassailable, then there would be no eminent domain, no military draft, no taxes, no abolition of slavery, etc.

          • Jim Delaney

            Not confusing anything, sir. I wrote a book on the subject—very well researched, of course.

            If unalienable natural law/natural rights are being assailed and undermined, it is for want of resistance by the People and their “Representatives”; thus, violations of these foundational natural rights are under constant and often successful assault by government. Natural Rights, like the Constitution itself, cannot defend themselves; that is our duty.

      • carlosperdue

        “and the other framers”? Really? All the Framers passed and signed it? Amazing how you lied right there. Jay, for example, was Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.

        Congress repealed and replaced the unconstitutional 1790 naturalization act in 1795 to be consistent with original intent and Vattel: “the children of citizens of the United States, born out of the limits and jurisdiction of the United States, shall be considered as citizens of the United States”. *Citizens*. Not natural born citizens.

        After two centuries, every American should know that congress passing a law doesn’t make it constitutional. Nor does a supreme court decision.

        The original constitution gave congress the power to determine naturalization, i.e., citizenship via immigration. It did not confer the power to redefine the concept of citizen, native-born citizen, and natural born citizen and thus be able to subvert the Presidential eligibility clause. Such power in general would be extremely subversive. It would allow congress to subvert the 14th Amendment and many others.

        “Every human being born within the jurisdiction of the United States of parents not owing allegiance to any foreign sovereignty is, in the language of your Constitution itself, a natural-born citizen; but, sir, I may be allowed to say further that I deny that the Congress
        of the United States ever had the power, or color of power to say that any man born within the jurisdiction of the United States, not owing a foreign allegiance, is not and shall not be a citizen of the United States. Citizenship is his birthright and neither the Congress nor the States can justly or lawfully take it from him.”
        – Congressman John Bingham, principal Framer of the 14th Amendment, House debate in 1872; cf. Congressional Globe 42.2 (1872), p. 2791

        *Not owing allegiance to any other country.* Note that immigrants are not required to renounce their allegiance to other countries until they become citizens. Therefore the children of legal or illegal residents are NOT natural born citizens.

        Bizarrely, under current US law they’re not required to renounce their foreign citizenship, which the Founding Fathers would surely have seen as suicidal. It’s difficult to imagine how the renunciation of allegiance could be done in good faith without renouncing the citizenship. But then this was passed by corrupt, dishonorable, treasonous politicians who think their own oath and the Constitution are jokes.

        BTW, your idol Ted Cruz kept dual US-Canadian citizenship and didn’t even renounce it until May 2014, which would’ve horrified the Founding Fathers. Talk about allegiance. Cruz had such contempt for our sovereignty and Constitution and country that he ran for US Senator and accepted it even while owing allegiance to another country.

        Or who knows, maybe your idol is The Anchor Senator, Super Marco Rubio? Or Barack Obama? He wasn’t eligible either, whether or not he was born in Hawaii.

        QED. You lose.

        • JDubya

          Oh my, do you have to be so crass? OK, she might be wrong – her points still have merit – cool it! I agree almost whole heartedly with what you say. But the definition has been effectively changed for NBC from what we see to what allows Obama to be President for two terms. If we could change back to what it should be, what chaos would ensue. Perhaps this Convention that Mark Levin talks about is the answer.
          Whatever the case, badmouthing and blowing about Cruz the idol does not make them wrong – only living in the present. Under current misguided conduct in the US, a presidential candidate needs only to have one US citizen parent and it doesn’t matter where he/she was born (God, look at my pc-ness), This was given to us by Obama who was ineligible, yet screwed up the country for two years and we could do nothing about it.
          We sent tea party candidates to Washington with big promises who then turned against us. But Ted Cruz earned his label of most hated because he did what he promised.
          So my point is quit bashing those who basically agree with you, start living in the present and lets get after those b…..ds before they do us in – I am afraid that it is already to late. Our country is already gone and soon will be a caliphate (because the muslims will not tolerate their Democrat helpers for long).

      • Jim Delaney

        And the Nationality Act of 1795 amended/corrected the 1790 act in this regard.Also, read the ruling in Minor v Happersett (1875) which perfectly mirrors the founders’ understanding of NBC.

      • carlosperdue

        Bzzzz. Wrong.

        “Every human being **born within the jurisdiction of the United States** **of parents not owing allegiance to any foreign sovereignty is**, in the language of your
        Constitution itself, a natural-born citizen.”
        – John Bingham, principal Framer of the 14th Amendment, House debate; Congressional Globe 42.2 (1872), p. 2791

        Constitutionally, Cruz has two strikes. Morally speaking he has at least three strikes, since he was a Canadian until 19 months ago.

        And then there’s the fact that he owes Goldman Sachs.

        A lot of us are sick of this internationalist, world citizen crap. Cruz should’ve renounced his Canadian citizenship before he ran for ANY office, including state level & United States Senate, let alone President.

        How do you maintain citizenship in a foreign country and not have any allegiance to that country? Ridiculous.

        You people who are supporting Cruz and pushing this sloppy interpretation of natural born citizen are part of the reason the USA won’t be the USA much longer. It will simply be part of a de facto and soon a de jure world government.

        • JDubya

          Good grief, man! This is important to you? That Cruz didn’t even consider that he had dual citizenship before he ran for office? Get a life! As soon as it was brought up, he fixed it – he has little recollection of Canada, let alone being affected by it.
          And this business about Goldman Sachs has been explained and he doesn’t ‘owe’ them.
          And think about what you are saying, if a person is about to birth a child and happens to be in a foreign country when the birth happens does not cost that child its US citizenship nor of being NBC. If a couple of citizens serve as missionaries to a foreign country, their children born there do not lose their NBC status either. A woman US citizen who gets pregnant by a foreigner and bears a child, that child does not lose their NBC either. Your interpretation was recognized as flawed and repaired.
          But still, I agree almost totally with you, but you go too far – and it really is quite moot, since Obama has caused that all to change in the current world. You know that the only ones it will ever be enforced on are Republicans – if any Democrat-favored candidate lacks credentials we will never be able to stop them – see Obama for proof. So drop this foolishness unless we get a chance to really fix it. Cruz might be the guy who can, but I doubt it will ever be fixed.
          Get a grip and get ready, the end is near for the US!

          • carlosperdue

            Good grief, do you practice being disingenuous and hypocritical in the mirror, like Ted “Commerce Uber Alles” Cruz?

            In what universe does Cruz not “owe” Goldman Sachs? First, he still literally owes them money. It’s collateralized by his own assets, but so is any home mortgage. More importantly, his wife is a big wheel at Goldman.

          • JDubya

            Like I said, I agree with you, but do try to be nice, OK, Johnny? You can’t expect Mommy to always be around to fix things for you. By the way, Trump was one of those engaging in all that, when did that leopard change his spots? Or is that just for show?

          • carlosperdue

            Nice try. Evading issues you not equipped to deal with.

          • JDubya

            So what is your M. O. – beat those, who would be so ignorant as to voice an opinion, into submission so that they will vote for – whom? You certainly have helped me to decide – if you are touting Mr Trump as all that the Republicans have to offer, I might as well vote for someone else. That is the M.O. I see from you.
            No wonder Republicans have so much trouble with voters. Why don’t you try explaining (as you seem to have ability to do) and leave the dirty mouth and insults off. Then quit perceiving insults from jests made at your haughtiness; but I should have known that a person of your obvious superiority and high-mindedness should never be expected to carry on a civil conversation with any of these lesser persons, especially those who do not agree with you to the letter by saying yessir, anything you say sir. After all, who amongst us can hold a candle to your majesty? Has anyone ever disagreed with you and lived to speak of it?
            I merely pointed out what looks like some glaring similarities between what you were excoriating and what The Donald has done. An answer would have sufficed.
            Anyway, thanks for helping me make up my mind – I won’t be voting for Mr Trump in the primary for sure. But I do want Cruz to remain a Senator regardless of all the invective you heaped upon him, even though I had made no claims for or against him and was not asking your opinion on them. But that is your problem, not mine. I had heard all that BS before and wasn’t really surprised to hear it come from you either.
            Do you ever reach a point where you feel somewhat ashamed for your treatment of others who most likely will vote the same way that you do despite your attempts to drive them away? Do you think that you are the only one who is capable of seeing what is happening to our country and is qualified to make any judgement about it?
            All I asked from the beginning was that you quit being so tactless and crass towards others in your responses. Do you not want to have a conversation? Did you hear anything I said? Try breathing deeply first.

          • carlosperdue

            What a crybaby. You’ve got no credible arguments, so you resort to whining. I don’t care who you vote for.
            Also, how about a link to the McConnell claim, crybaby?

          • JDubya

            Well, it has been fun, but one can only dally with a person such as yourself for a little while. Of course, even if I gave you a link about McConnell, you would claim it is not credible and call me another name or claim I am crying or some other such nonsense. But I think that anyone reading this little back-and-forth will recognize you for what you are and your positions will be dismissed almost automatically – too bad because you make good points, then blow the whole thing by being as obnoxious as you can. I don’t want you to suffer too much more anger and anxiety so I’m quitting now. OK?

          • carlosperdue

            Run away. Mommy, mommy, Carlos said something I didn’t like

  • JosephinaAngelina

    Apparently the framers of our constitution, including George Washington, were dummies who forgot that Vattel’s definition was the correct one, when one of the first laws they passed in 1790 defined as a natural born citizen those who were born of U.S. citizens overseas, such as Ted Cruz.

    • Jim Delaney

      Which is why the Nationality Act of 1795 corrected the 1790 oversight.

    • TruthToBeTold

      You are incorrect in two parts.

      First, Ted Cruz’s father wasn’t a U.S. citizen at the time of Ted’s birth. Rafael Cruz didn’t become a U.S. citizen until 2005.

      Second, the Naturalization Act of 1795 repealed the natural born citizen status to children born beyond the boundaries of the United States to U.S. citizen parents and replaced it with just ‘citizen’ status (USC 8 Sec 1401). To date no act has reinserted the NBC status to those children.

      • JosephinaAngelina

        Natural Born Citizen is a subset of citizens. The fact that the 1795 act calls such people citizens does not mean they are not natural born citizens. My point stands about the 1790 act. By stating that it was a mistake, you are stating that the framers, including Washington, didn’t know what they meant when they used the term natural born citizen.

        • TruthToBeTold

          No mistake. You’re debunked and REDUNDANT.

      • 946towguy

        8 usc 1401 defines natural born citizens.
        Just so you can understand a little better, look at the language of 8 USC 1405:

        A person born in Hawaii on or after August 12, 1898, and before April 30, 1900, is declared to be a citizen of the United States as of April 30, 1900. A person born in Hawaii on or after April 30, 1900, is a citizen of the United States at birth. A person who was a citizen of the Republic of Hawaii on August 12, 1898, is declared to be a citizen of the United States as of April 30, 1900.”

        You can see here, the difference between naturalized citizen, “a citizen of the United States” and, natural born citizen”a citizen of the United States at birth.”
        The latter language is the same used in 8 USC1401.

  • dpt

    How simple! If by whatever laws or rules are in place at the time, if a baby is adjudged to be a US citizen as it draws its first breath, it is a natural born citizen. Any child born to A US citizen is also given that citizenship. The constitution was written in a style to be understood by the common man, five black-robes not withstanding.

    • StingraySFO

      Binding precedent cannot be overruled by any law, or any subsequent SCOTUS construction. The binding precedent is clear in the definition construing Article II, Section 1, Clause 5, that defining statement being “…[A]ll children born in a country of parents who were its citizens became themselves, upon their birth, citizens also. These were natives, or natural-born citizens, as distinguished from aliens or foreigners…”

      • 946towguy

        That statement is just plain wrong in so many ways. Please try reading the Constitution some time. There are 3 co-equal branches of government, each with defined powers and limitations intended to create checks and balances. All legislative powers are vested in the Congress. While the courts may interpret law and create a precedent, that precedent may be overruled by a change in the interpreted law. The Constitution may also be amended, and it has been 27 times. These Amendments override precedent as well.

        • StingraySFO

          So it appears you are much more steeped in the knowledge of the Constitution and law than are all of the Constitutional scholars. Interesting. Perhaps you’d like to offer your credentials proving that.
          That said, I won’t be bantering back and forth with you, as I’m not a scholar, only a person that applies my own intelligence in comprehending what has been extensively studied, and proven as factual by those that dedicated their lives to the understanding of the use and definitions of the Constitution and its founding principles of origin.

          • 946towguy

            You don’t need a doctorate degree to read plain language. My statements are based on my educated understanding of the Constitution, lawful acts of the Congress and SCOTUS interpretation of the same.

            Undoubtedly, there are scholars who disagree with the binding precedents of the SCOTUS and dislike the plain language of the codified acts of Congress. Some even try to say the law doesn’t say what it clearly says. The federal statutes use the verbose language for natural born citizen “a citizen of the United States at birth.’
            Some will even continue to argue that congress cannot pass laws to define who is a citizen of the United States at birth and think the SCOTUS lacks jurisdiction to perform judicial review.

    • Jim Delaney

      dpt,

      All trees are plants, but not all plants are trees. Bear that in mind when discussin

    • carlosperdue

      Bzzz. Wrong. I see the genius towguy voted you up, which means he has nothing but contempt for the Constitution.

      • 946towguy

        That assertion is off topic offensive and false. I think that perhaps you have disdain for the Constitution, as you clearly have issues with article 1 section 8.

        • carlosperdue

          Now you’re being a crybaby. I have no issues with Art Sec 8. I’m not the one who claims that the power to determine naturalization (immigration) allows congress to redefine “natural born citizen”.

          • 946towguy

            It is the power, “To establish a uniform rule of naturalization,”
            which includes the authority to create rules to define who is a citizen at birth, as well as who may be naturalized later. The requirement is that the rules be uniform, so that there are not different definitions of citizenship among the several States.

  • carlosperdue

    Reality check:

    In what universe would the Framers of the Constitution and the 14th Amendment have made the spawn of illegal aliens, even invading soldiers and occupiers, eligible to run for President of the USA?

    Democrats and open-immigration chamberboy RINOs are so deep into pseudo-sophisticate Rube Goldberg legal priest mumbo jumbo, they can’t see when they fail the most basic laugh tests.

  • swigrus

    Case Law and precedent prove it over and over again!

    We have a ‘Resident’ in the WH! Nothing more. No law signed by him, no Executive Order signed by him is legal.

    His damage to this country is going to be very hard to repair.

  • CaptTurbo

    But in the end, does any of this matter after our White House has been infested with the America hating communist Trojan Horse Muslim usurper for two terms? There are no rules anymore folks. Our constitutional republic has been stolen from us in the night.

    • RWS

      Sadly accurate. This has been a long, slow descent from representative democracy to a farcical one. We once were “the last, best hope of mankind.” We have betrayed that trust.

      • CaptTurbo

        Actually, the constitutional republic was never designed or intended to be a democracy. That’s the problem, Nobody understands that.

        • RWS

          It was intended to be a representative democracy. That’s why (for example) even the enslaved population was counted (at a discount, to be sure) in allotments of seats in the lower house of Congress, and why (as another example) in my own State single women who held real property were separately enfranchised.

          But I do agree, “Captain”, that a pure democracy never was intended. History and the present day show no successful pure democracy in any but the smallest polity. The framers were not ignorant of either history or human nature.

        • Jim Delaney

          Nobody?

        • CSN

          Yes, a republic is different than a democracy.

    • Jim Delaney

      WE WE permitted and we continue to permit the Constitution’s being stolen from us. Because we have an interloper in the White House now in no way justifies first-patriots’ ignoring the ineligibility of that interloper nor that of Cruz and Rubio.

      There are a number of bonafide natural born citizen candidates who would do the office of president and the American people credit. Why not uphold the Constitution and support those candidates?

      • CaptTurbo

        We are so screwed it’s kinda like Her Thighness, Cankles Clinton, the Duchess of Chaffington, Queen of the black lie says: “What difference at this point does it make”?

        • Jim Delaney

          YOiur frustration is TOTALLY understandable. We’ve really messed it up for ourselves, but we are the only ones who can fix it. The question is, are we up to it. Very very frustrating.

          • CaptTurbo

            You keep saying “We”. You got a mouse in your pocket? I never voted for any of the communists now infesting offices of government and I spend a lot of time and effort trying to educate the sheeple.

          • Jim Delaney

            As do a good number of us here as well, Capt.

            I can vividly and painfully recall the paucity of fellow “patriots” participating in a whole host of Tea Party interventions, events, marches, meetings, both locally and in DC over

    • carlosperdue

      There are no rules because the “conservatives” in congress & senate have passive-aggressively collaborated with these coups d’etat, shirking their duty to enforce the Constitution, through impeachment if necessary. And “conservative” politicians are able to get away with that because conservative voters neglect to hold them accountable at election time. Which is why Karl Rove had an almost clean sweep in the 2014 Republican primaries.

      Too many conservatives think listening to Hannity or Limbaugh or FoxNews, or reading emails and posting online is a substitute for focused voluntarism, donations, organization, and activism at election time.

      • CaptTurbo

        The RINO GOP establishment bares massive guilt but the system has become too corrupt for a fair outcome for the voters. The blood of Patriots and tyrants will be called for if the republic is to survive. We will know soon at least If the liberal pond scum and RINO trash is not swept away in the next cycle.

        • carlosperdue

          “the system has become too corrupt for a fair outcome for the voters”

          That’s only true if you think that simply voting fulfills your duty as a citizen, if you think all you have to do is vote and you should get what you want. It’s not true, because your duty to be a diligent, honorable citizen goes far beyond voting.

          But it is a convenient excuse for doing nothing. Only a tiny percentage of Republican voters do any significant personal sacrifice to win elections. If Republicans honored their citizenship duties, there would be no problem.

          I donate at least $3,000 per cycle. Well over 10% of my income. And I’ve volunteered to organize and run half a dozen campaigns.

          • CaptTurbo

            Who are you donating to Mr high and mighty? I have pulled all donations from the GOP. I send plenty to the Second Amendment supporting foundations though and also to my tea party candidates of choice. The GOP keeps calling me and crying for money. I tell them I will resume financial support when they once again represent my wishes. Until then I invest in beans, bullets, and bullion. So, piss off. Oh, and have a nice day.

          • carlosperdue

            I can see you know you’re really not doing your duty, otherwise you wouldn’t be so defensive and making excuses for being self-serving, as if you’re really doing your duty as a citizen by buying more guns & ammo. You sound like one of these MOLON LABE chatroom warriors, who won’t volunteer for a good campaign, but we’re supposed to believe that you’ll sacrifice everything for the resistance when the time comes. What a load.

            Only retards and RINOs donate to the GOP. I donate only to true conservatives like Joe Miller, Dave Brat, Chris McDaniel, Jeff Sessions.

            If you’re donating to the NRA, SAF or CCRKBA, you’re donating to the destruction of the USA. These three groups are passive-aggressively supporting the takeover of the USA by over-immigration, invasion, and occupation, overwhelming the relatively conservative native born citizenry’s voting control of the USA. Because of that, within 20 years the Dems will have permanent supermajority control of the federal government and a supermajority of the states.

            Now GFY

          • Jim Delaney

            What I wanted to say. Well, except for the “GFY”.

          • carlosperdue

            Thanks. Good point on the GFY. I removed it even though he asked for it with the “piss off” recommendation.

          • Jim Delaney

            Carlos,
            I like your style. You’re a gentleman AND a scholar, sir.

        • TruthToBeTold

          Not just Congress should hold all the blame. I blame the FBI, the CIA, the courts, and but not limited to the U.S. Military for allowing the United States to be compromised by a impostor in the White House with proven forged Identity records.

          • CaptTurbo

            These sins could not be carried out had the House not sold us out and funded all this corruption.

      • Jim Delaney

        How true. Too many of us also rely on media talking heads to “research” these issues “for” us. Thanks. But, I’d rather do my own research. The talking heads, both left and right, are relentlessly mangling the truth, thus doing the public a huge disservice. It’s not always intentional or driven by political motivations–not always–but the end result always seems to be the same: widespread misinformation.

  • TruthToBeTold

    In the Minor case SCOTUS worded their definition of a ‘natural born citizen’ verbatim per the Law of Nations. They also said that this is the ‘common law’ that the Founders ‘were familiar’ which sets precedent because they first had to determined if Minor was a U.S. citizen before the case could continue. In doing so they stated because she is a ‘natural born citizen’ born of two U.S. citizen parents on U.S. soil there is no need to determine if she is a ‘citizen’ because “there have been doubts of that definition, but never as to the first.”

    Minor v. Happersett Minor v. Happersett, 88 U.S. 162 (1875):

    [EXCERPT]
    “…IT WAS NEVER DOUBTED THAT ALL CHILDREN BORN IN A COUNTRY OF PARENTS WHO WERE IT’S CITIZENS BECAME THEMSELVES, UPON THEIR BIRTH, CITIZENS ALSO. THESE WERE NATIVES OR NATURAL BORN CITIZENS, as distinguished from aliens or foreigners. Some authorities go further and include as citizens children born within the jurisdiction without reference to the citizenship of their parents. As to this class there have been doubts, but never as to the first. For the purposes of this case, it is not necessary to solve these doubts…..”

    A “natural born citizen” was put in place by the Founders as a safe guard to protect the United States from someone with dual allegiances like Barack Hussein Obama who has manipulated the U.S. Army into rising up U.S. enemies like ISIS.

  • Jim Delaney

    THANK GOD someone actually understands the difference between NBC and Citizen; that the difference stems from natural and American common law; that no amount of parsing and obfuscation, scholarly though they may sound to the uninitiated, can alter the original meaning of and rationale for NBC. To wit, Obama is a PERFECT illustration of why the Founders insisted upon a President’s being a “natural born citizen”–not a dual citizen–with no alien ties, loyalties, ideologies which would undermine the republic.

    With great pain and exasperation, I’ve been listening and reading the obfuscating drivel spouted by misinformed conservative talking heads about this subject who continually conflate the terms to the detriment of both honest discussion and faithful adherence to the Constitution.

    Finally, a voice of reason and probity. Thank you again!!!!

  • Daddy Kickass

    This would be much easier to resolve if Cruz would just hire A 10 year old, give him a computer and a copy of Photoshop and let him cut and paste an official looking Birth Certificate for him. Never mind if he uses doctor names that didn’t exist, a hospital that didn’t exist or numerical sequences that were out of sequence because there are PLENTY of Dumbocrats who will believe ANYTHING and plenty of RINOS who are too afraid to open their mouth and challenge ANYTHING.

  • CSN

    I agree with the author of this article. His explanation is exactly as I have always understood it to mean and it isn’t complicated. Key words are BORN ON/IN AMERICAN SOIL TO AMERICAN BORN PARENTS.

  • Elegy4358

    Thank you Joe, one of the few in the spotlight that will actually spread truth instead of trying to mislead constitutionally ignorant voters like the Levin, Beck and Cruz have been doing by intentionally trying to blur the line between citizen and natural born citizen.