Birthright Citizenship Act of 2011 Would Close Loophole

Published on January 17th, 2011

With H.R. 140, the “Birthright Citizenship Act of 2011,” the current practice of granting automatic citizenship simply by virtue of a child having been birthed on U.S. soil, regardless of the legal status of the child’s parents, would be eliminated. It’s about time that this legislation was put forth. Instant citizenship has persisted through gross misinterpretation of the 14th Amendment and an extremely liberal approach to granting of citizenship which results in the creation of an estimated 300,000 birth-spot citizens each year, resulting in the weird dynamic of “citizen” children with an illegal alien parent or parents. The legislation put forth by Rep. Steve King (R-IA) would amend the Immigration and Nationality Act by requiring that at least one parent be a U.S. citizen or legal resident in order for the U.S.-born child to receive automatic citizenship. In introducing the legislation, Congressman King said, “The current practice of extending U.S. citizenship to hundreds of thousands of ‘Anchor Babies’ every year arises from the misapplication of the Constitution’s citizenship clause and creates an incentive for illegal aliens to cross our border. The ‘Birthright Citizenship Act of 2011′ ends this practice by making it clear that a child born in the United States to illegal alien parents does not meet the standard for birthright citizenship already established by the Constitution. Passage of this bill will ensure that immigration law breakers are not rewarded, will close the door to future waves of extended family chain migration, and will help to bring an end to the global ‘birth tourism’ industry.” Arizona representative John Kavanaugh added that the U.S. should not bestow “citizenship like a door prize,” nor should citizenship be based on “the GPS” coordinates of where a mother gave birth. The U.S has been way behind the curve in an intelligent and logical approach to this issue. Nearly every other country, including all EU members, requires that at least one parent be a citizen or permanent resident for a newborn to automatically become a citizen. More information about birthright citizenship is in the CAPS issues paper: “American Jackpot: the Remaking of America by Birthright Citizenship.” I encourage you to contact your representative in Congress and ask that he/she support HR 140, an important piece of legislation moving us in the right direction to address needed clarification on birthright citizenship.

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