Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952
Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952
Truman vetoed the Act because he regarded the bill as “un-American” and discriminatory. His veto message said:
Today, we are “protecting” ourselves as we were in 1924, against being flooded by immigrants from Eastern Europe. This is fantastic…We do not need to be protected against immigrants from these countries–on the contrary we want to stretch out a helping hand, to save those who have managed to flee into Western Europe, to succor those who are brave enough to escape from barbarism, to welcome and restore them against the day when their countries will, as we hope, be free again….These are only a few examples of the absurdity, the cruelty of carrying over into this year of 1952 the isolationist limitations of our 1924 law. In no other realm of our national life are we so hampered and stultified by the dead hand of the past, as we are in this field of immigration.
Truman’s veto was overridden by a vote of 278 to 113 in the House and 57 to 26 in the Senate.
In 1953, McCarran said:
I believe that this nation is the last hope of Western civilization and if this oasis of the world shall be overrun, perverted, contaminated or destroyed, then the last flickering light of humanity will be extinguished. I take no issue with those who would praise the contributions which have been made to our society by people of many races, of varied creeds and colors…. However, we have in the United States today hard-core, indigestible blocs which have not become integrated into the American way of life, but which, on the contrary are its deadly enemies. Today, [they serve] to promote this nation’s downfall more than any other group since we achieved our independence as a nation.
Citizens are also required (under the provisions of the Internal Revenue Code) to pay taxes on their total income from all sources worldwide, including income earned abroad while residing abroad.
Male U.S. citizens (including those living permanently abroad and/or with dual U.S./other citizenship) are required to register with the Selective Service System at age 18 for possible conscription into the armed forces.
The Supreme Court has never explicitly ruled on whether children born in the United States to illegal immigrant parents are entitled to birthright citizenship via the 14th Amendment, although it has generally been assumed that they are.
A person’s record of birth abroad, if registered with a U.S. consulate or embassy, is proof of citizenship. They may also apply for a passport or a Certificate of Citizenship to have their citizenship recognized.
Different rules apply for persons born abroad to one U.S. citizen before November 14, 1986. United States law on this subject changed multiple times throughout the twentieth century, and the law is applicable as it existed at the time of the individual’s birth.
For persons born between December 24, 1952 and November 14, 1986, a person is a U.S. citizen if all of the following are true (except if born out-of-wedlock):
The person’s parents were married at the time of birth
One of the person’s parents was a U.S. citizen when the person was born
The citizen parent lived at least ten years in the United States before the child’s birth;
A minimum of 5 of these 10 years in the United States were after the citizen parent’s 14th birthday.
The highest-ranking naturalized citizens to have been excluded from the Presidential Line of Succession were Henry Kissinger and Madeleine Albright, each of whom would have been fourth in line as Secretary of State had they been natural born citizens.
Whether this restriction applies to children born to non-U.S. citizens but adopted as minors by U.S. citizens is a matter of some debate, since the Child Citizenship Act of 2000 is ambiguous as to whether acquisition of citizenship by that route is to be regarded as naturalized or natural-born. Those who argue that the restriction does not apply point out that the child automatically becomes a citizen even though violating every single requirement of eligibility for naturalization, and thus the case falls closer to the situation of birth abroad to U.S. citizens than to naturalization. This interpretation is in concert with the wording of the Naturalization Act of 1790, that “the children of citizens of the United States that may be born beyond the sea, or out of the limits of the United States, shall be considered as natural born citizens”, which does not draw a distinction between biological children and adopted children, even though the process of adoption was certainly well known at the time.
An April 2000 CRS report by the Congressional Research Service, asserts that most constitutional scholars interpret the phrase “natural born citizen” as including citizens born outside the United States to parents who are U.S. citizens under the “natural born” requirement.
Effective February 27, 2001, the Child Citizenship Act of 2000 provided that a non-U.S. citizen child (aged under 18) with a U.S. citizen parent, and in the custody of that parent, automatically acquired U.S. citizenship.
The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) neither defines dual citizenship nor takes a position for it or against it. There has been no prohibition against dual citizenship, but some provisions of the INA and earlier U.S. nationality laws were designed to reduce situations in which dual citizenship exists. Although naturalizing citizens are required to undertake an oath renouncing previous allegiances, the oath has never been enforced to require the actual termination of original citizenship.
there has been a dramatic increase in recent years in the number of people who maintain U.S. citizenship in other countries.
One circumstance where dual citizenship may run counter to expectations of government agencies is in matters of security clearance. Any person granted a Yankee White vetting must be absolutely free of foreign influence, and for other security clearances one of the grounds that may result in a rejected application is an actual or potential conflict of national allegiances.
Nationals who are not citizens
This article is about United States nationality law. For information regarding United States citizenship, see Citizenship in the United States.
Although all U.S. citizens are also U.S. nationals, the reverse is not true. As specified in 8 U.S.C. § 1408, a person whose only connection to the U.S. is through birth in an outlying possession (which as of 2005 is limited to American Samoa, Swains Island, and the unincorporated US Minor Outlying Islands), or through descent from a person so born, acquires U.S. nationality but not U.S. citizenship. This was formerly the case in only four other current or former U.S. overseas possessions
Guam (1898–1950) (Citizenship granted by an Act of Congress through the Guam Organic Act of 1950).
the Philippines (1898–1935) (Granted independence in 1946; National status rescinded in 1935; Citizenship never accorded)
Puerto Rico (1898–1917) (Citizenship granted by an Act of Congress through the Jones-Shafroth Act of 1917).
the U.S. Virgin Islands (1917–1927) (Citizenship granted by an Act of Congress in 1927).
The U.S. passport issued to non-citizen nationals contains the endorsement code 9 which states: “THE BEARER IS A UNITED STATES NATIONAL AND NOT A UNITED STATES CITIZEN.” on the annotations page.
Non-citizen U.S. nationals may reside and work in the United States without restrictions, and may apply for citizenship under the same rules as resident aliens. Like resident aliens, they are not presently allowed by any U.S. state to vote in federal or state elections, although, as with resident aliens, there is no constitutional prohibition against them doing so.
For example, for Puerto Rico, all persons born in Puerto Rico between April 11, 1899, and January 12, 1941, are automatically conferred citizenship as of the date the law was signed by the President Harry S. Truman on June 27, 1952. Additionally, all persons born in Puerto Rico on or after January 13, 1941, are native-born citizens of the United States. Note that because of when the law was passed, for some, the native-born status was retroactive.
The law contains one other section of historical note, concerning the Panama Canal Zone and the nation of Panama. In 8 U.S.C. § 1403, the law states that anyone born in the Canal Zone or in Panama itself, on or after February 26, 1904, to a mother and/or father who is a United States citizen, was “declared” to be a United States citizen.
All persons born in Alaska on or after June 2, 1924, are native-born citizens of the United States. Alaska was declared a U.S. State on January 3, 1959.
All persons born in Hawaii on or after April 30, 1900, are native-born citizens of the United States. Hawaii was declared a U.S. State on August 21, 1959.
All persons born in the island of Guam on or after April 11, 1899 (whether before or after August 1, 1950) subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, are declared to be citizens of the United States.
Currently under the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (INA) effective from December 24, 1952 to present the definition of the “United States” for nationality purposes, was expanded to add Guam; and, effective November 3, 1986, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (in addition to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands of the United States). Persons born in these territories on or after December 24, 1952 acquire U.S. citizenship at birth on the same terms as persons born in other parts of the United States; and “Outlying possessions of the United States” was restricted to American Samoa and Swains Island.
Congressional Research Service Report number RL30527 of April 17, 2000, titled “Presidential Elections in the United States: A Primer” asserts that citizens born in Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands are legally defined as natural born citizens, and are, therefore, also eligible to be elected President.
Loss of citizenship
As a historical matter, U.S. citizenship could be forfeited upon the undertaking of various acts, including naturalization in a foreign state or service in foreign armed forces. In addition, before 1967 it was possible to lose the citizenship due to voting in foreign elections. However, the Supreme Court ruled unconstitutional the provisions of Section 349(a) which provided for loss of nationality by voting in a foreign election in the case Afroyim v. Rusk, 387 U.S. 253, . 8 U.S.C. § 1481
After a U.S. citizen satisfies the Department of State procedures, the Department of State issues a Certificate of Loss of Nationality (CLN) signifying that the Department of State has accepted the U.S. Embassy/Consulate’s recommendation to allow the renunciation. Renunciation of citizenship includes renunciation of all rights and privileges of citizenship.
In 1948, the Secretary of Defense (an office created in 1947 following the merger of the Departments of War and the Navy) replaced the Secretary of War in the line of succession.
The Immigration Act of 1924, or Johnson–Reed Act, including the National Origins Act, and Asian Exclusion Act (Pub.L. 68-139, 43 Stat. 153, enacted May 26, 1924), was a United States federal law that limited the annual number of immigrants who could be admitted from any country to 2% of the number of people from that country who were already living in the United States in 1890, down from the 3% cap set by the Immigration Restriction Act of 1921, according to the Census of 1890.
Relative proportions of immigrants from Northwestern Europe (red) and Southern and Eastern Europe (blue) in the decades before and after the immigration restriction legislation.
The Act controlled “undesirable” immigration by establishing quotas. The Act barred specific origins from the Asia–Pacific Triangle, which included Japan, China, the Philippines (then under U.S. control), Siam (Thailand), French Indochina (Laos, Vietnam, and Cambodia), Singapore (then a British colony), Korea, Dutch East Indies (Indonesia), Burma, India, Ceylon (Sri Lanka) and Malaya (mainland part of Malaysia). Based on the Naturalization Act of 1790, these immigrants, being non-white, were not eligible for naturalization, and the Act forbade further immigration of any persons ineligible to be naturalized. The Act set no limits on immigration from the Latin American countries.
In the 10 years following 1900, about 200,000 Italians immigrated annually. With the imposition of the 1924 quota, 4,000 per year were allowed. By contrast, the annual quota for Germany after the passage of the Act was over 57,000. Some 86% of the 155,000 permitted to enter under the Act were from Northern European countries, with Germany, Britain, and Ireland having the highest quotas. So restrictive were the new quotas for immigration from Southern and Eastern Europe, that in 1924 more Italians, Czechs, Yugoslavs, Greeks, Lithuanians, Hungarians, Poles, Portuguese, Romanians, Spaniards, Chinese, and Japanese left the U.S. than arrived as immigrants.
The quotas remained in place with minor alterations until the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965.