Trump stokes pre-election fear of immigrants to drive voters

Hannah Rogers
November 1, 2018

Trump noted a 1993 speech by Harry Reid on the Senate Floor a day after he stunned lawmakers by announcing he planned to sign an executive order to end birthright citizenship to non-residents. Most other countries confer citizenship based on that of at least one parent - jus sanguinis, or "right of blood" - or have a modified form of birthright citizenship that may restrict automatic citizenship to children of parents who are on their territory legally. "That's what it costs ― billions". We have no way of tracking that, so that is our direct message to the families of Central America: Do not send your children to the borders. U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan said Trump could not scrap the right with the stroke of a pen.

Trump doubled down on his commitment to upending the 14th Amendment to the riled-up crowd chanting, "USA!" That's the case with President Trump's proposal to end "birthright citizenship" through an executive order. "We will get rid of all of this".

Already, even some of the President's defenders downplayed the prospects of successfully ending birthright citizenship by executive order.

"It's important to keep in mind that the 14th Amendment to the Constitution exists for a very straightforward reason", Arthur told hosts Garland Nixon and Lee Stranahan, citing the Dred Scott Decision, an infamous 1857 Supreme Court ruling that concluded that people of African descent were not citizens of the United States.

Top Democrat Nancy Pelosi called Mr Trump's claim an example of "Republican's spiralling desperation to distract from their assault" on healthcare.

Donald Trump said that the issue would be ultimately decided by the Supreme Court.

Tuesday on his radio program, LevinTV host Mark Levin spoke with Conservative Review senior editor Daniel Horowitz about birthright citizenship - and that President Donald Trump is entirely within his rights to interpret and enforce the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. "The 14th Amendment has been in the Constitution for 150 years". "Zero chance" he tweeted about the Court's odds to abolish the birthright citizenship. And when he did differ with Trump, it was on the point of process, not explicitly coming down one way or the other whether birthright citizenship ought to be altered in the first place. The White House did not respond to a request for comment.

The words of a top Democrat proclaiming that "no sane country" would provide birthright citizenship to the children of non-residents was promoted by President Donald Trump on October 31 as he argued that the Supreme Court will ultimately decide the issue.

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Currently, Republicans control two-thirds of the legislatures across the country. Some of these seats are in key swing states such as Florida and Pennsylvania.

"We're the only country in the world where a person comes in, has a baby, and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States for 85 years with all of those benefits", Trump said in an interview for "Axios on HBO".

"Immigrants are the lifeblood of our nation", Reid said.

And Peter J. Spiro, a law professor at Temple University in Philadelphia, told the Times, "The conventional understanding is absolutely clear that children born in the United States are citizens of the United States, with the insignificant exception of the children of diplomats".

Many legal scholars agree.

Trump said he had spoken to legal counsel about it and that the change is in the works.

He added that the phrase "and subject to the jurisdiction thereof" was added to the 14th Amendment to ensure that the child of anyone not subject to American jurisdiction isn't a legal citizen.

The Constitution's citizenship clause was part of the post-Civil War amendments that enshrined the rights of African-Americans.

Most legal scholars say the jurisdiction language denies citizenship only to those who are not bound by US law, such as the children of foreign diplomats.

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