Natural Born Citizen Defined by SCOTUS
‘No person except a natural-born citizen…shall be eligible to the office of President,’ …
Is Barack Obama a natural born citizen? That question is not being asked by anyone in Congress, nor the press nor broadcast media, nor academia. Even though the answer is “No”.
That question has been assumed to have never arisen in any previous Supreme Court case and been adjudicated. But the answer to it has been hidden in a case that’s 135 years old and has now finally been brought to light by Leo Donofrio, Esq. He demonstrates how it clearly answers the question and that that answer indicates that the current President is ineligible for the office.
In it he disproves the common belief that the Supreme Court has never defined who is (and isn’t) a “natural born citizen” -which is required of the President and Vice-President. The resulting conclusion is that Barack Obama is not eligible to be the U.S. President according to the Supreme Court decision in Minor v Happersett.
following is a condensation of an analysis by Leo Donofrio, Esq. posted on his blog Natural Born Citizen http://naturalborncitizen.wordpress.com/ in June, 2011
[Note: One who is born to unnaturalized parents is deemed a US citizen by the 14th Amendment if the parent(s) are permanent U.S. residents, and not foreign diplomats/military/visitors, but they are NOT deemed to be natural born citizens.]
When Justice Gray in Wong Kim Ark failed to state that he was citing the dissent from Dred Scott… a big red flag went up. Another big red flag went up when I noticed that Gray wrongfully attributed Justice Waite’s analysis of the citizenship issue in Minor v Happersett to a construction of the 14th Amendment, -but Waite construed Article 2 Section 1 [of the Constitution] to define Minor’s citizenship, not the 14th Amendment.
That Gray was trying to obscure that fact made me very suspicious and then the light just went on. It was a very big A-ha! moment for me. Gray’s obfuscation triggered my BS detector and then I realized that he was blowing smoke on precedent from Minor.
You have to recall that Chester Arthur became President not long after Minor was decided… and he would have known that the Minor decision held him ineligible. He then goes on to obscure his parental heritage via lies, especially to the Brooklyn Eagle newspaper. Justice Gray is then appointed by Arthur to the Supreme Court. This requires us to scrutinize every word written by Gray. – Leo
If Obama had been born a natural born Citizen of the United States, under Article II Section 1, then he never would have needed the 14th Amendment to claim U.S. citizenship.(!)
… And yet he did claim his citizenship was based on the 14th Amendment!
The Obama campaign initially claimed Obama: “became a citizen at birth under the first section of the 14th Amendment”:
“The truth about Barack’s birth certificate.
Lie: Obama Is Not a Natural Born Citizen
Truth: Senator Obama was born in Hawaii in 1961, after it became a state on August 21st, 1959. Obama became a citizen at birth under the first section of the 14th Amendment.”
US Constitution; Article II, Sec. 1. “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.”
Why did the Obama campaign take a “14th Amendment” defense, but then later scrub all references to the 14th Amendment?
Perhaps because they realized that claiming “Obama became a citizen at birth under the first section of the 14th Amendment” OUTED HIM AS NOT A NATURAL BORN CITIZEN!
LeoD. Their scrubbing is very telling. At the very least, you have to take notice that so called “Factcheck” seems to change their facts quite a bit. –
Leo: I quote the United States Supreme Court, in Minor v. Happersett:
“The Fourteenth Amendment did not affect the citizenship of women any more than it did of men. In this particular, therefore, the rights of Mrs. Minor do not depend upon the amendment. She has always been a citizen from her birth and entitled to all the privileges and immunities of citizenship. The amendment prohibited the state, of which she is a citizen, from abridging any of her privileges and immunities as a citizen of the United States, but it did not confer citizenship on her. That she had before its adoption.”
Someone who is a “natural born citizen” does not need the 14th amendment to claim U.S. citizenship.
The only reason for the Obama campaign to claim that “Obama became a citizen at birth under the first section of the 14th Amendment” is because he was not, and is not, a natural born citizen.
In Boyd, the Court lists another case which refers to Waite, but this one is properly cited to include the case name, whereas the case name is omitted from the citation pointing to Minor :
“In United States v. Cruikshank, 92 U. S. 542, 92 U. S. 549, Mr. Chief Justice Waite, delivering the opinion of the Court, said:
‘Citizens are the members of the political community to which they belong. They are the people who compose the community, and who, in their associated capacity, have established or submitted themselves to the dominion of a government for the promotion of their general welfare and the protection of their individual as well as their collective rights.’
July 1, 2011
The Naturalization Act of 1790 sought to “complete” the intent of what lay in the term “natural born citizen” as it was used in the US Constitution’s Article 2,.Sec.1. clause, and should be cited as Original Intent and “in pari materia.”
The naturalization act of 1790 reveals, in effect, that “natural born citizens of the United States” were: [note; there is no such term as that. There is only “natural born citizen”, and it is never connected to “the United States” because natural citizenship was the result of natural State citizenship, -with each State being sovereign over naturalization and immigration at the authoring of the Constitution.]
-all those who had only one nationality and allegiance at the time of their birth to a father who was a US citizen at that time.
In Section 1, any citizen that naturalized to the United States (and who could then father a natural born son) was required to “forever [be free of] all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty whatever.”
This was so important it was repeated. In Section 2, any citizen that naturalized to the United States was required to “support the constitution of the United States; and that he does absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty whatever”.
In Ware v. Hylton, 3 U.S. 3 Dall. 199 (1796)
we find how that we are supposed to read the US Constitution, in its literal context.
“When we collect the intention from the words only, as they lie in the writing before us, it is a literal interpretation, and indeed if the words and the construction of a writing are clear and precise, we can scarce call it interpretation to collect the intention of the writer from thence. The principal rule to be observed in literal interpretation is to follow that sense, in respect both of the words and the construction which is agreeable to common use.”
“…This principle is recognized by the Constitution….”
“The expression ‘citizen of the United States occurs in the clauses prescribing qualifications for Representatives and Senators, but not for President. In the latter, the term ‘natural born citizen’ is used and excludes all persons owing allegiance by birth to foreign states.”
The New Englander and Yale Law Review, Volume 3 (1845)
[~Common words and common sense; “citizen” = common word; “born” = common word; “natural” = common word; together = common language expression, -NOT a “legal term of art”, aka a legal artifice, as in a legal artificiality.
No legal term of art is connected to anything that is natural by definition. Hence, the phrase “a natural born citizen” means the same as its alternate: “a born natural citizen”. Two adjectives modifying one noun, each with their own separate meaning.
That is common sense based on common language, as mentioned in the 1796 court opinion quoted above. In fact, it is the constitutionally *required* view. As it states, no interpretation is used because the only interpretation is a literal interpretation.]
“…at the time of his birth, Barack Obama Jr. was … a citizen of the United Kingdom and Colonies (or the UKC) by virtue of being born to a father who was a citizen of the UKC.”
Justice Waite cited Article 2 Section 1, affirming the clear language that none but a natural-born citizen may be President. Waite pointed to that clause as well as the Naturalization clause empowering Congress as evidence that new citizens may be created by birth or naturalization. Clearly, persons who gain their citizenship from a naturalization statute are thereby NATURALIZED. [note: and that is where his logic became defective due to erroneous presumption regarding the authority of Congress, the meaning of natural born citizen, and the phase being included in a naturalization statute. It’s inclusion had nothing to do with naturalization and everything to do with presidential eligibility and the foreign-born Americans’ right to it. They are the “new citizens…created by BIRTH”! not by naturalization.]
At the time of their birth, naturalized persons [it is a treasonous characterization to call American children “naturalized persons”. One who is born being a natural citizen cannot be “made” into that which they already are.] under the Naturalization Act of 1790 were entitled to US citizenship BECAUSE they were simultaneously naturalized by the statute at the time of their birth.
[ “Naturalized persons” were all foreign ADULT MEN who swore the oath, NOT BABIES! American babies, off-spring of American couples, have NEVER been “made” citizens by the authority of any naturalization act! They were NOT entitled to citizenship because of naturalization at birth. They were entitled by Right of birth, by Right of birthright, by Right of descent, by Right of inheritance. “…and the RIGHT of CITIZENSHIP shall not DESCEND…”.
Rights are NOT given by Congress, its statutes, or any element of government. People are born with them as an elemental feature of human existence. One is the Right of Inheritance, which includes one’s station in life and national membership. Government does not give it and cannot revoke it.]
Hence, they are not natural born. They require a statute to grant them citizenship.
see it here: [you can’t see it there because what he claimed does not exist in or between the lines. See for yourself.]
[nash notes: No one gains U.S. citizenship from any statute. They gain it from the Oath of Allegiance & Renunciation alone. It is the power of the oath that makes citizens. Only with it does one become a citizen, -without it there is no citizenship because Congress was given no authority to create citizens, -only to write the nation-wide rule to make the naturalization process uniform across all States.]
In 1795, Congress repealed the words “natural born” from that statute and those words never returned. [that is incorrect. It repealed the entire act because it replaced it with a new one which switched to the general title of “citizen of the United States” [as apposed to: foreigner] since it included citizen-born children in the same sentence as those of naturalized foreigners (who could not be described as “natural born”.
Drawing no distinction between the citizen-born and the alien-born resulted from erasing the language fueling a controversy about the nature of citizenship in America. Those born of alien immigrants in America were thereby no longer openly excluded from presidential eligibility as they had been while the foreign-born American children were required to be understood to be natural born citizens, -meaning by patrilineal descent, –not native-birth. If they were natural born then the native-born of immigrant aliens were NOT! But there were tens of thousands of them while there were hardly any American children born abroad.]
So, in 1875 when Minor was decided, the current naturalization act did not contain the words “natural born”, which had been previously repealed in 1795. It simply made those born abroad “citizens”. [again, it didn’t “make” them anything. It ordered that they be recognized as Americans (as apposed to foreigners).]
Justice Waite also stated:“These provisions thus enacted have, in substance, been retained in all the naturalization laws adopted since.”
The key words here are, “in substance”. While the words, “natural born” were repealed in 1795, the following naturalization statutes granted “citizenship”, and “citizenship” is the “substance” of all naturalization acts of the US, not Presidential eligibility.
[again, no naturalization statute has “granted” citizenship. They merely recognize citizenship that has come into being by the oath.]
That was the only time in our national history where a federal statute contained the words “natural born citizen”.
Congress does not have the power to amend the Constitution or to define any term therein by statute. This may only be done by an Amendment.
[~that is a false characterization. He is arguing that the very first Congress, composed of many of the founding fathers and framers of the Constitution, knew less about what they were doing than back-seat drives two hundred years later pontificating at their computers.
Understand this; that first Congress sought to remedy a short-coming of the Constitution. It lacked any indication of what was the basis of citizenship in the United States: place of birth or parentage?
The founders understood that at the national level, it was no longer the British criterion of birth-place. That had been dropped by switching to Natural Law, and Natural Rights. That meant that American men took their American sovereignty with them everywhere in the world. Their rights, and their children’s rights, did not cease at water’s edge. “Like father, like son” was the new national rule, and it did NOT contain the caveat “if born within U.S. borders”.
Thus the only reason to single out American children born abroad in the 1790 act and label them as natural born citizens and not simply “citizens of the United States” (as the children of naturalized men were labeled) was to defend and protect their right to one day serve, like their American father could, as the leader of their nation, and not be disenfranchised based on the bastardized system of the British.
“Father, you can be President, so why can’t I?” That is a question that no founder had to hear once it was made clear in the 1790 that his child was a natural born citizen regardless of the irrelevant location of his birth.
Note that that first Congress did not “define” what a natural born citizen is. They did not need to because everyone knew what was NOT a natural born citizen. The problem was that with a century of British nationality indoctrination under the common law, everyone did not know exactly what constituted a natural born citizen because they didn’t understand the principle of natural membership found in natural law.
Just as the founders had jettisoned the term “subject”, they had also jettisoned the rule of “natural-born” that attached to it (hyphen included); which required birth within the king’s borders, -stripping his subjects of the right to pass their British nationality to their children if they crossed beyond the boundaries of his realm.
Americans rejected such an arbitrary, artificial rule of nationality and instead switched to the principle of natural nationality inheritance by blood connection. ]
Justice Waite, citing Article 2 Section 1 for authority, stated that citizens may be born . [~that was meaninglessly ambiguous; born a citizen by the common law rule covering foreigners? or born a citizen by being citizen-born?]
Chief Justice Waite also noted that new citizens may be naturalized by federal statute.
[that was a misconception that grew over time as the camel’s nose of federal authority pushed its way into the tent of the States’ authority over all matters not delegated to Congress, i.e., immigration and naturalization.]
Persons, who at their birth, require a naturalization statute are not natural born, but they are “born citizens” due to their naturalization at birth. Therefore, while there are only two paths to citizenship, birth or naturalization… some persons who are not “natural-born citizens” are “born citizens” due to having received their citizenship by virtue of a statute such as the naturalization statute of 1790, 1795, etc.
So, under the 1790 act, while those persons might be “considered as” natural born citizens, such consideration derives via statue, not from the Constitution.
[~that entire line of reasoning is based on false assumptions. It assumes that Congress was given authority that it was not actually given. It assumes that American citizens are not sovereign but instead the government is sovereign over its creators, and can dictate what their rights are or are not.
It assumes that Americans are aliens, foreigners, if not born within American borders. That was the rule of the British common law, NOT Natural Law.
If Americans are not under the principles of Natural Law then we are not under the principles of Natural Rights either, because that latter comes with the former. That would mean that we have no unalienable rights and that Government is God.
You can’t have it both ways. You can’t assert that Americans have certain unalienable rights and then assert that Government can dictate that those rights only exist if they are in accord with inherited bastardized British nationality rules involving an arbitrary factor unrelated to life, family, and natural membership.
If the law of natural belonging is the law of America, then the location of where one is born is irrelevant because one belongs to their parents by natural right; and they belong to their nation, -thus making their child also a member of the same national family by birth, by blood connection, by descent, and not by statutory adoption via a naturalization-at-birth fiction.]
Hence, regardless of the statutory terminology, those persons are naturalized and therefore do not meet the qualifications to be President. Justice Waite did not say that naturalized persons were eligible to be President. He noted that the Constitution provided citizenship to natural-born citizens and to naturalized citizens, but in his opinion he states directly that only natural-born citizens may be President.
[~what garbage. “in his opinion”? It is not an opinion. It is a fact. How stupid. Even worse is the baseless claim that the Constitution provides citizenship to anyone. Where the heck is that found? Oh, nowhere! Even the 14th Amendment does not provide citizenship. It is merely declaratory in nature, -stating what already was a fact by principle, although unacknowledged by the Southern States (that Blacks were not non-citizens, non-Americans but something inferior, like denizens were in Britain, or worse.]
July 1, 2011
Important Information? Yes!
Matters to every American? Yes!
Should courts or congress listen? Yes!
Will courts or congress listen? No!
Why? Because they’re effin’ morons.
Being under the rule of morons is like being stuck in between two walls of concrete that are too high to climb over and moving at you slow enough that you have time to think of ways out but at the same time you realize there’s no way out. Just like the two walls, they’re not intelligent, they don’t care, and they’re controlled by other forces.
Your reference to the Panama Canal Zone being “rented US territory” is correct, and that is what makes McCain not a natural born citizen. Panama, not the US, was the sovereign of the Canal Zone. If we were the sovereign, we would not have been paying Panama an annual rent. Furthermore, the treaty with Panama said that the US was to administer the Canal Zone as if it were sovereign.
Now, it can be argued that McCain was born free of a foreign allegiance, which is the same condition as a natural born citizen (born in the US to US citizen parents), since Panama did not give citizenship to children born in Panama to foreigners. Now, Panamanian law does give these children the option of becoming Panamanian citizens at the age of majority, but it can be argued that this does not constitute a foreign allegiance at birth.
So, if the question of McCain’s eligibility had gone to the US Supreme Court, and if the court were to have ruled as to the intent of the natural born citizen clause (having Presidents who were born free of foreign allegiance), McCain could have been ruled eligible to be President, despite not being a natural born citizen. But I don’t think McCain wanted to take a chance that the US Supreme Court would rule per the intent of the Founding Fathers (where he could be ruled eligible) as opposed to the letter of the law (where he would be ruled ineligible).
Leo is right about McCain. McCain knew he was not a natural born citizen and he did not want to chance his eligibility. He put his own interests ahead of that of our nation, and by so doing, he shut off the public scrutiny that would have exposed Obama’s ineligibility.
[~that view is exactly the reason why the first Congress of the United States mandated that all foreign-born Americans be recognized as the natural citizens that they are. If later Congresses had not been ignorant of that motive, they would have left that mandate intact, and the question of McCain’s eligibility would be non-existent.]
ed. Regardless, SCOTUS in order to find for McCain being eligible, would have been required to expand the “class” of those defined as nbc in Minor, they would have had to expressly overrule Minor on that point because in that case the definition was set to be nbc= born in US to citizen parents… and McCain does not fit that description. – Leo
[~that is a view that I have debunked a hundred times over, and easily so since it is entirely based on false assumptions that are easily exposed. “overrule Minor”? Minor offered no definition!. There was none to be found in its final holding. NBC has never been “defined” by any court holding. And probably never will be.]
What a July 4th! The fireworks show I saw with my daughters was spectacular, yet there were no patriotic speeches, nothing to distinguish the day from any other, except for some patriotic music and songs containing the word `America` among the pop culture morass. Will it be our last 4th as a Republic – or has our republic already ended?
Today, despite our nation’s debt-riddled condition, Obama is actually calling for more government spending and higher taxes to “cure” the economic crisis. His theory is that we can “spend and tax our way to prosperity.” Following Obama’s logic, America’s obesity epidemic can be solved by raising the benchmark weight ceiling, or simply declaring “Eat More/Weigh Less!” We can solve the DUI problem by raising the blood alcohol ceiling. Obama can solve the question of his re-election by raising the poverty ceiling to increase the number of welfare dependents.
comments by A.R. Nash
Jus Sanguinis was clarified in that decision as being the principle of how citizenship is naturally transmitted. It was the principle that led the United States government to oppose conferring citizenship on Wong Kim Ark who believed he was a citizen based on the 14th Amendment. He did not believe he was a natural born citizen, and he wasn’t, even though the court found that he was a citizen per the 14th Amendment and that jus sanguinis didn’t apply in the cases of children of resident immigrants. But such cases are only a fraction of a fraction of the births in America. All the rest are citizens by birth to citizens.
The conceptual delusion that nationality is naturally connected to the border of the national government within which one is born is preposterous, and the framers were NOT suffering from that delusion when they added the requirement that a President must be no one who is not a natural born citizen.
Their focus wasn’t on where a candidate was born but to whom he was born. No taint of foreign nationality could be allowed to be in the President’s immediate background. He must be 100% American. That didn’t exclude children born to foreigners but they first had to utterly disengage from and reject their former national bonds before their son was born.
Why such a strong rejection of foreign allegiance? Because of the position of the United States that an immigrant’s U.S. citizenship and allegiance must be absolutely undivided and not in competition with any other allegiance. Foreign un-naturalized fathers cannot produce natural-born citizen children because without an American father there exists, along with natural membership in the father’s country, the taint of foreign allegiance -even if none actually exists.
PR wrote: “”you’re missing the key element upon which every republic depends – an acceptance of the fact that you can’t “get your way” if your way is contrary to what is officially the Law. Your legal reality is delusional”
What’s delusional is believing that if enough people believe a false impression, that makes it true. Truth by consensus. The majority opinion is always the Truth?
That is the basis of racist beliefs and prejudices of all kinds. If everyone around you believe something, then it must be true? That is inherently false logic.
As to “the key element upon which every republic depends” the most fundamental key is the ability of WE, THE PEOPLE to think! And NOT accept unquestioningly every common conception inside and outside of the government.
Washington lives in a bubble, along with the concepts of immigration law based on misinterpretation of cases like Wong Kim Ark. Jus soli common law citizenship may be the governing rule in administering immigration law and regulations, but it doesn’t follow that its basis is founded on an understanding of the fundamental principles of citizenship, -principles that have existed in all societies except those within the British Isles (post-the Calvin case) and subject colonies of Empires.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
There are basically three types of citizens; those who are legal citizens by statutory decree, those who are natural citizens by inheritance of the citizenship of their parents, and those who are natural-ized citizens who must be transformed through a discreet process from being aliens, or immigrants, into imitation natural citizens.
Natural citizens are children born to citizens, just as in nature every off-spring embodies the traits and nature of their parents. Where their off-spring are born is immaterial. Animals reproduce their own kind, and citizens reproduce their own kind.
~reply from: Leo Donofrio Esq. website: Natural Born Citizen
Your reply demonstrated your total confusion about the case. You claimed the court did not settle the issue of who is a natural born citizen when anyone who can think can read the plain wording that states that what they didn’t settle was the issue of citizenship of those who are not natural born citizens but are children of residents who lacked citizen parents.
[~he failed to grasp that both are true. The court settled nothing in any actually definitive manner. It merely acknowledged that those born of Americans in America are also naturally Americans. That offers no boundary whatsoever as to the limits of who is a natural born citizen since it only addresses a single circumstance and no others.]
Then you went on to strongly argue points that I’ve always agreed with. Why? But drawing some erroneous conclusions. You fail to grasp the fact that a natural born citizen is not defined by jus soli nor jus sanguinis but by BOTH! One MUST be born in the U.S. to CITIZEN PARENTS. Any deviation results in something other than a natural born citizen.
[His response demonstrates a rigidly regimented legal mind-set, -one in which everything is determined, defined, and delineated by the almighty LAW, -as is a very common disease of lawyers via their law school indoctrination.
And what precisely is that “something other”? He failed to grasp that such a definition is a blanket cancellation of the natural RIGHTS of all sovereign American citizens to pass their American citizenship to their children, -and that would be because…. the government has the right to strip Americans of their God-given unalienable rights?
Where in the Constitution did the founders grant the government such authority? Read the 9th & 10th Amendments. All rights not delegated to the central government are retained by the States or the People. The government has no say in the matter.
It was up to the States or the People, and the People were never asked since their rights were automatic. Thus there are no federal laws by which natural Americans are citizens of the United States. It is simply one of the “given” foundation stones of the republic. It is an “a priori” fact.
Americans produce American children. Government is not involved and has no say in the matter anymore than it has a say as to whether or not Americans have a right to have and own their own children. Where is that right written down? Rights that are fundamental do not need writing.]
“the Supreme Court in Minor did not hold that all women born in the US were citizens. Only those born to citizen parents in the US were deemed to be citizens by the Court in Minor.
[~actually, the court did not “hold” anything regarding women except that the Constitution, including the 14th Amendment, did not give women the right to vote.
It observed that American women born of American parents were American citizens, -whatever the heck that meant in reality is another story.
The fact that they almost universally were born in the U.S. was not an element intrinsic to whether or not they were American citizens. It was merely a part of the description of who definitely is a natural born citizen. It was not listed as some sort of requirement that he erroneously portrays it to be.
Is one not a member of their parents’ family unless they were born on their property and not born somewhere else? The same principle applies regarding membership in a country and nation.]
Since the Court was not required to construe the 14th Amendment – as to Mrs. Minor’s citizenship – the Court refrained from doing so. Instead, the Court construed Article 2 Section 1 as an independent ground by which the Court determined that Mrs. Minor was a natural-born citizen since she had been born in the US to parents who were citizens.
[I’ve written at some length in recent expositions regarding the placement of a hyphen between the word “natural” and the word “born” and what it signifies. It is a very significant thing, and yet he totally failed to comprehend that fact and the reasons for it.
That exposes his mind-set as being wholly British oriented, and not American oriented. He, like so many thousands of lawyers before him, was brain-washed by the ingrained nature of the transplanted British nationality model that prevailed throughout the colonies.
It remained the law in many or most of them following the Declaration of Independence, but when the new national government was formed after the Constitution was ratified in 1788, that new government abandoned that stinking system in favor of natural law.
From then until the Wong opinion of the Supreme Court in 1898, there was a divergence and conflict between State citizenship law and national citizenship law and policy. The national government did not recognize common law citizenship. Only natural citizenship and naturalized citizenship. They alone produced a single nationality, single allegiance and loyalty, a single American identity.
They did so by rejecting dual-citizenship, -which the States did not. They welcomed immigration and made the native-born children of immigrants State citizens at birth. But that citizenship was not natural citizenship since it came with an inherited allegiance to a foreign power through their natural connection to a foreign father, -dual allegiance, dual roots, dual authority, and dual citizenship.
No such child was eligible to serve as the Commander of the American military and President of the United States.
by Adrien Nash revised & expanded greatly in May 2014, March 2015, and July 2015