Various Unadopted Presidential Eligibility Requirements

When the Founding Fathers composed the eligibility requirements for the office of the President, they did it with great deliberation, not wanting to make any mistake that might endanger the future survival of the nation, nor an unwise choice that might result in serious harm due to a nefarious President with a secret foreign loyalty acquired via indoctrination by a father who was a foreigner and a loyal subject of a European King.

A potential for great harm was embodied in the powers that the President would command because his office would be combined with that of the Commander-in-Chief of all military forces; Army, Navy, Marines, Coast Guard, and state militias in time of national emergency.  Therefore it was imperative that he be incapable of possessing any loyalty to any nation other than the United States, -the nation of his father.

If the United States was not the nation of his father, then it would not be his nation alone but only one of two to which he might be loyal, and that possibility was not a situation that was free from any possibility of disloyalty to the United States.

They therefore choose the only circumstance that was free of the possibility of disloyalty, and that choice was the one that precluded all citizens born of foreign fathers, -meaning those born with either no inherited U.S. citizenship, or born with state-granted “son of the soil” citizenship, which at least one state (Virginia) granted to the children of its immigrants.  So to be safe, they wrote the statute with the exclusion of anyone who was born to a foreigner, meaning a father who was not a U.S. citizen (either by birth or via naturalization).

They weighed various options for how they might word the eligibility requirement. The following could have been among them:

1    Every person born within these united States of America shall be eligible to the office of the President;…
2    Every person born with citizenship in any of the States of America shall be eligible to the office of the President;…
3    Every person born a citizen in any of the United States of America shall be eligible…
4    No person except a born citizen of the United States shall be eligible…
5    No person born of a foreign father shall be eligible…
6    No person born outside of the United States of American shall be eligible…
7    No person except a son of citizens, or of immigrants who have declared their intent to become U.S. citizens, shall be eligible for the office…
8    No African, Asian, Eastern European, Southern European, Catholic, Muslim, Jew, Hindu, Buddhist, nor son of such, nor any female, divorcee, adulterer, felon, blasphemer, uneducated or property-less person shall be eligible to the office of President.
That’s eight versions for framing who could be allowed to be President.  Most of them sound decent, and yet they rejected all of them, and mostly for the same reason; -they would have allowed the son of a foreigner to be President.  That ended up being forbidden because the Constitution declares that: “No person except a natural born citizen, or a citizen at the time of the adoption of this Constitution shall be eligible to the office of the President,  neither shall any person be eligible to that office who has not attained to the age of thirty five years, and been fourteen years resident within the United States.”

When the Constitution was written, no one born in America was a subject of the British Empire, -having become a citizen of the United States via the “mass naturalization” of the Declaration of Independence.  Those who weren’t naturalized foreigners were natural born Americans because they were born to Americans, and born in America in the colony that was their home.  They were natural citizens of the sovereign state in which they were born.

All eligible and electable men of the founders’ generation could be President if they were alive when the Constitution was written.  That generation would not live forever, and when the naturalized citizens among them were all deceased, no later naturalized citizens, nor children of un-naturalized immigrants would be qualified to be President.  Thereafter only natural born citizens qualified.

So candidates would be from one of two allowed groups.  One included not only the off-spring of foreigners, but also actual foreigners who had become naturalized by state governments.  The other excluded both of those types of citizens and allowed only children of citizens to be President.  They were the 98% who were not born to foreigners but to American fathers.  They would be entrusted with the enormous power of the Commander-in-Chief.

Children born to foreigners, even though considered citizens from the time of their birth in one or more States, would not be entrusted with the national government’s martial power because it only recognized the children of Americans as being natural born American citizens.  Only those born as citizens would be entrusted, because they would have no connection to any foreign power, people, nation, or culture.

A concept that needs to be parsed, -a hair that needs to be split is that of the difference between being born with U. S. citizenship [bestowed as a gift by the government], and being born with one’s innate political identity being American by nature, possessing U.S. citizenship as a right  [versus possessing it as a legal grant].  They who are born of citizens are born as citizens of the USA only.  They are American and only American.

No one born of a foreigner is born as a citizen, but is instead, thanks to a Supreme Court misinterpretation of the 14th Amendment citizenship clause, born with U.S. citizenship.  They are citizens from or at birth, not citizens by birth.  Citizenship is something that they are allowed.  Their national membership is bestowed by the rule of law, not by nature.  That law can be changed via the amendment process or judicial review.  It’s not permanent and unalienable, as is nature, (including political nature).
It is citizenship by permission, -not by parentage. It is based on the place of one’s nativity, (not on one’s nature) and tied to an inherited foreign political nature.  “As is the father, so is the son.”

The U.S. Supreme Court opinion in Wong Kim Ark in 1898 resulted in children of foreigners being viewed as being U.S. citizens even though not previously recognized as citizens in many or most states.  Previously citizenship depended on their father becoming naturalized, i.e., becoming an American.  Then they acquired derivative citizenship through him.  They were then legal citizens.

But those born as citizens, -begotten by citizens,  were not citizens by U.S. law because no law governing their membership in the nation was ever written, nor was ever needed, nor could legitimately be legislated because it was bestowed by nature and was beyond the reach of human-devised authority.  Natural citizenship is not “obtained”, it is not “acquired”, it is not “bestowed” by human law, but is, -like race and ethnicity, something with which one is born.
One cannot be born as something completely different from what one’s parents are.  One cannot be born as a member of a racial group that’s different from one’s parents’ group.  An Asian child cannot be born to African parents.  Similarly, one cannot be born as a natural member of a nation to which one’s parents are outsiders, -foreigners.  One can only be a natural member of the group to which their parents belong, just as in all natural animal groups.  Thus children of  foreigners cannot be born as natural Americans.  To be born with U.S. citizenship requires the deliberate intervention of government to grant something with which one was not naturally born, and that grant can begin at birth.

From a 1795 discussion of “natural born subject”:

  “It is an established maxim, received by all political writers, that every person owes a natural allegiance to the government of that country in which he is born. Allegiance is defined to be a tie that binds the subject to the state, and in consequence of his obedience, he is entitled to protection…”
“The children of aliens, born in this state, are considered as natural born subjects, and have the same rights with the rest of the citizens.”

~one response: “But ‘subjects’ are not ‘citizens’; and we fought a war so that we could be transformed from ‘subjects of the British Crown’ to Citizens of a Republic!”    Publius Huldah

Splitting hairs & parsing ambiguity:

  “It is an established maxim, received by all political writers, that every person owes a natural allegiance to the government of that country in which he is born.”

That sounds like a clear, straight-forward statement, but it is woefully confused and confusing thanks to the use of a wrong word, namely the word “person” when person is not actually meant.
It should have used the word “adult”, or even more realistically; “adult male”, -as in “every adult male owes a natural allegiance…”.  Neither children nor maidens nor wives had any responsibility for the defense of the nation, and could not be called into national service in time of emergency or threat, but men and male youths could.  So to couch the concept of “allegiance” correctly, it is necessary to recognize that no child or female “owed” any government or any king any “allegiance” because they were under the jurisdiction of the male head of the household, and not directly under that of the government.

No child is born “owing allegiance” to anything.  Its only obligation is to eat, sleep, play, and grow.  It is not “owned” by the government via the concept of a natural inherited loyalty being owed to the king in exchanged for the protection provided by the government.

It is instead totally under the father’s jurisdiction, and has no responsibility toward the government until reaching adulthood.  Only then does the natural responsibility to help defend the nation and ensure its survival become an element of one’s membership in the society and nation of one’s birth.

“Allegiance is defined to be a tie that binds the subject to the state, and in consequence of his obedience, he is entitled to protection…”

Clearly that concept is not a direct transmutation of the code of a monarchical government established on The Divine Right of Kings to that of a free society established on the Natural unalienable Rights of Man.  In an attempt to justify the reign of a single individual over all others who were his equal in every measure (Christians all) the concept of the “legitimate” rights of Kings was formulated.  He was God’s chosen authority on Earth and even the head of the Church in the case of break-away England, so his authority was characterized as divinely ordained, and people were therefore obligated to obey his dictates and edits.

As a means of making such a requirement of obedience seem like a fair trade-off for some benefit, the benefit of “protection” was offered as a perfect basis for the “relationship” between subject and Lord.  But the whole thing was just a self-serving conceptual concoction and could have had its wording reversed and yet still make sense, perhaps even greater sense, as in:
“Allegiance is defined to be a tie that binds the  State to the subject, and in consequence of the Protection the State provides, the King is entitled to his subject’s obedience…”

In that wording, the Protection comes first, and Obedience is a “natural” response of allegiance  owed in indebtedness for that protection. That justifies the monarch expecting obedience to his rule, -it makes the members of his kingdom subject to his will, making them his “Subjects”.  But in time and with the hegemony of royal greed, that subjection came to be assigned not just while they lived and worked within his realm, but for an entire lifetime no matter where on earth they may have settled.  Such a gross over-reach was evidence of the true motive behind the whole concept of “allegiance”.

  “The children of aliens, born in this state, are considered as natural born subjects, and have the same rights with the rest of the citizens.”

In reading that statement, it is easy to assume that he stated something that he did not in fact state.  He did not state that the children of aliens actually are natural born subjects, but merely are to be considered as, or treated as, or equal to, but not identical to natural born citizens.  In other words, their citizenship was essentially identical to that of natural citizens because there was zero difference in their rights and privileges.  That was the same as the situation in England between actual natural subjects and children of alien subjects.

No difference existed in their relationship and responsibility toward the king’s authority, nor their protection and rights.  But England was different from the individual states of America, -it had a national Army, a national Navy & Marine Corps, a national foreign service, and an office of national security.
Who they allowed to occupy the highest positions in the most critical offices involving national security and state secrets was of vital importance to preserving and protecting the Empire from its numerous enemies and the traitors they might enlist.  The top leaders of the nation would not allow the sons of a foreigner to hold such sensitive posts because just one traitor could doom the nation.  No one but a full-blood “natural” subject could be considered for such appointments.

Such positions were not a right, -they were a unique privilege and privileges are not given to just anyone and everyone.  They were reserved solely for those of whom there could be no doubt as to their loyalty, nor any reasonable possibility of disloyalty or treason.  So while sons of alien subjects were treated as equal to natural subjects, when it came to national security a distinction was drawn and that distinction was very real.

But aside from those unseen offices, and the officers who filled those few positions, English subjects and American colonial subjects, (or state citizens) were identical in the comparison between the natural citizen-fathered and the alien-fathered law-made members, -having the same rights and responsibilities.  But…the Federal government was not the same as a State government.  Like Britain, the national government included control of an Army and Navy, Marines and Coast Guard.  It had critical top security posts, with the Presidency being the greatest of them since it held the power of the Commander-in-Chief.  Rules for who would be allowed to wield that power needed to be wisely chosen, and so they were, just as in England.  No son of a foreigner would be entrust with that great power.  Only sons of Americans would be allowed.

That was not a narrow exception since 98% of American males were born to American fathers.  So only the exceptions to the rule were ruled out.  Only natural citizens were deemed as being trust-worthy with the power of the President.  And that power was not a slight thing.  King George said of George Washington something to the effect of “If he relinquishes power when his term is up, he will be the greatest man on earth.”

In the relationship between nations, in particular England, power was central.  How American power was used and for what purpose was central to whether or not the union would survive.  So it was critically important that the person wielding it always be someone who would use it to protect the nation, and not compromise it in favor of a foreign monarch.  Therefore no one born with a connection to a foreign monarch could be assumed to possess loyalty only to the Constitution and government of the United States.

Hence, Presidents were required to be a natural citizen, -born of citizens, born as a citizen, and not a dual citizen, with dueling allegiances between two nations with two histories, two  traditions, competing  political philosophies, and potentially warring Armies and Navies.  They must be what Barack Obama can never be.  Their citizenship must be beyond the reach of government, and not due to some obscure century-old Attorney General’s misinterpretation of a Supreme Court opinion regarding 14th Amendment citizenship for children of foreigners.  The citizenship that results, not from nature nor United States law, but merely from an administrative policy of the CIS (formerly the INS) that erroneously grants citizenship to children of non- immigrant foreign men is inadequate to constitutionally qualify for the office of the President.  But the United States Constitution is no longer the law of the land, which was demonstrated clearly by the election of Barack Hussein Obama to the Presidency.

by a.r. nash  Oct. 2012   obama–


About arnash
“When you find yourself on the side of the majority, it’s time to pause and reflect.” - Mark Twain - Politicians and diapers - change 'em often, for the same reason. "Government is like a baby. An alimentary canal with a big appetite at one end and no sense of responsibility at the other." Ronald Reagan "Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other views." William F. Buckley, Jr. “The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt.” - Bertrand Russell The people are the masters of both Congress and the courts, not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert it. Abraham Lincoln “Good people sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” - George Orwell “Satan will use a lake of truth to hide a pint of poison”.

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