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07 January 2011

Ending Birthright Citizenship Extreme? Not Exactly.

Left-leaning groups across the nation are gearing up to fight legislation that would directly challenge the first sentence of the first section of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

Sentence one, section 1 of Amendment XIV reads as follows:

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.

Earlier this week, a group of state lawmakers met in the nation's capital to introduce sample language that states could use to "correct the monumental misapplication of the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution."

"According to the 14th Amendment, the primary requirements for U.S. citizenship are dependent on total allegiance to America, not mere physical geography," said Pennsylvania State Representative and State Legislators for Legal Immigration (SLLI) founder Daryl Metcalfe. "The purpose of this model legislation is to restore the original intent of the 14th Amendment, which is currently being misapplied and is encouraging illegal aliens to cross and cost American taxpayers $113 billion annually, or nearly $1,117 yearly per individual taxpayer."

The left is likely to call this proposal extreme. In fact, just two days ago, the executive director of the American Immigration Council (AIC) suggested the idea would turn the clock back to the pre-civil war era.

"The proposal presented is clearly unconstitutional and an embarrassing distraction from the need to reform our nation's immigration laws. It constitutes a vicious assault on the U.S. Constitution and flies in the face of generations of efforts to expand civil rights," AIC Executive Director Benjamin Johnson said in a January 5th press release.

I wonder though, what is so extreme, unconstitutional and embarrassing about saying that in order to gain U.S. citizenship, one of your parents must be an American citizen themselves.

The United States is one of few countries that confer citizenship jus soli, or by birth.

Research by the United States Office of Personnel Management Investigations Service, and compiled in the 223-page document titled "Citizenship Laws of the World", shows that many of our allies across the pond require at least one parent to be a citizen before their child can become a citizen.

The United Kingdom, Russia, China, Germany and Japan all require at least one parent to be a national in order for their kids to obtain citizenship. Are these nations extreme for having such a common sense prerequisite for citizenship? I think not.

The only extremists here are those who would oppose such a logical measure.