Vivek Ramaswamy Is NOT A Natural Born Citizen

Vivek Ramaswamy seems to have admitted that he is not a natural-born citizen and therefore not constitutionally eligible to be elected President. In the following video, the moderator says his age is 38, and slightly later (00:34) Ramaswamy says his parents moved to this country 40 years ago.

Unless his parents were already citizens when they moved here, they were not citizens when he was born. A person has to live in the US for at least 5 years before they can even apply to become a citizen.

They probably were here on a temporary visa. They may have had Vivek to improve their chances of gaining permanent residency and eventually becoming citizens.

The requirement in the Constitution is that a candidate for the presidency be a natural-born citizen. If they had meant just born in the US, the Framers would have simply said that. The Framers of the Constitution were not stupid. They did not use words that had absolutely no meaning.

A natural-born citizen is a term from the philosophy of natural law. It means basically the child of American parents born in the US, who has no claim on the citizenship of another country. Vivek was the child of two Asian Indian parents when he was born and therefore had the right to Indian citizenship when he was born.

Some people, mainly progressives, think that public opinion or the decision of a judge — legislating from the bench — should be enough to change the Constitution. Americans should NOT go along with that.

This is the same way that judges legislating from the bench discovered a non-existent, right to abortion in the Constitution. They made it up on the fly!

Kamala Harris is not eligible for the vice-presidency in the same way and neither is Nikki Haley. To draw an analogy, because a bank has been robbed 3-4 times and the robbers got away with it does not change the law for the future. Americans should just refuse to vote for ineligible candidates. They should also publicly denounce such candidates. It is more than disgusting that two ineligible candidates were on the Republican debate stage, without anyone saying anything about it.

It is extremely dangerous to allow progressives and others of their ilk to just change the Constitution at will. They are also working hard to diminish and erase the 1st and 2nd Amendments. Should those parts of the Constitution also be changed on the fly according to the current public whim?

If any person born here would be eligible to become president, then two illegal aliens or a couple on tourist visas could conceive and give birth to an American president. That would be absurd and certainly not what the Framers of the Constitution intended. The 14th Amendment did not address or change the original, basic presidential eligibility requirement and it was never intended to do so. Yet, the 14th Amendment is often used to claim that anyone born in the U.S. can become president no matter how tenuous the connect of the family is to the US.

Americans should be a part of preserving the original intent of the Constitution, not its destruction. You can do that in this situation by denouncing those shameless candidates who are not eligible and refusing to vote for them.

Related Posts:
Who is a natural-born citizen?

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States Should Enforce “Natural Born Citizen” Requirement

The Constitution requires the president to be a “natural born citizen”. The purpose of this post is not to re-hash the arguments about what “natural born citizen” means, but to outline a process that can generate a legal standard for how it is enforced that would be consistent with the original intent of the Framers. The States are key to this process.

This proposal is to have one or more states enforce via legislation the implementation of the requirement in their state, according to their understanding of the requirement. If a candidate or political party sues the state, the Supreme Court will review the law and decide whether the details of the law are constitutional, according to the original intent of the framers. By this means, we can produce a general standard for the requirement that all states could adopt.

Related posts: Natural Born Citizenship

Simply stated, I believe the Framers intended for both parents to be 100% American at birth and the child should be born in the US. There are some additional details to be addressed for certain situations, but that is the basic idea. For over 200 years there was no controversy about this requirement. The controversy arose only in recent years when persons with very questionable qualifications began to become candidates.

Related: Revisiting the POPE option

However, legally, it does not matter what I believe or what any other non-expert, non-authority believes. I would like to see the states and courts work out what enforcement should be, according to the Constitution and the original intent. Let them do their duty and commit what they decide to law. That would start the process.

Today, there is a large constituency of people who corrupt the original meaning of the term, because they want to promote the internationalization of America or for whatever ideological or financial reason. Then, most of the population has not researched the issue and is just not well informed about the original meaning of the term. Many of them have been influenced by the media, which generally supports the abrogation of the constitutional requirement via manipulation of public opinion rather than using the legal system.

The term comes from the philosophy of natural law, on which our Constitution is based. To understand the meaning of the term and the Framers’ original intent, one should look at how it was used in the literature about natural law.

Article II, Section 1 (excerpt)

No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

There are several ways that a legal definition of the term could be obtained.

  • The clearest and most straightforward way would be to amend the Constitution to better define the term, but at this time it is unlikely to pass Congress.

  • Congress could also pass a law outlining the requirements placed on candidates, but this is also highly unlikely at present for political reasons.

  • The Supreme Court could rule on requirements are for candidates. However, all attempts so far have been rejected by the courts, generally due to the plaintiff not having legal “standing”.

  • Finally, the States could enact a law requiring candidates to meet their natural-born citizenship requirements to be listed on the state ballot. (See the first reference listed at the bottom by Mario Apuzzo.)

The states enact many laws that determine how different aspects of the Constitution are implemented in their states. For one example, just consider the many gun control laws that have been made by states that delineate the limits of the Second Amendment. The “right to bear arms” is also not defined in the Constitution. Nevertheless, all the states pass numerous laws that constrain your right to bear arms. The courts review these laws for constitutionality. So, why should not the states do the same with the natural-born-citizen qualification for the presidency, delineating the exact qualifications with respect to the Constitution?

With states, we have 50 chances of passing a law that outlines the Framers’ original intent and requires candidates to comply. We don’t have to depend on a politically disinterested Congress alone. This would likely be very controversial and states may enact different versions of how the requirement will be implemented. However, this would just cause it to go quickly to the Supreme Court for adjudication. Then presumably there would then be no question of “standing” if a candidate or political party were to file such a lawsuit. So, this could be a means of obtaining a ruling on a more precise meaning of the term. It should be according to original intent, but also in the modern context of citizenship laws.

Such a procedure would also bypass the personal characteristics of any one candidate. When conservative activists pointed to Obama’s lack of constitutional qualification to be president, they were immediately accused of “racism”. That was a tremendous distraction, but would not be a problem if states pass a general law. The state law would be subject to review by the courts, rather than trying to have a specific candidate disqualified. The focus should be on developing a clear legal standard, which applies equally to every would-be candidate.

Related Posts:
Nikki Haley is NOT A Natural Born Citizen
What is the Definition of “Natural Born Citizen”?

Other References:
The States Have the Constitutional Power to Pass Legislation Prescribing Presidential Ballot Access Requirements Including Determining Whether a Candidate Meets the Eligibility Requirements of Article II, Section 1, Clause 5 by Mario Apuzzo
The Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How of the “natural born Citizen” Term In Our United States Constitution by CDR Charles F. Kerchner, Jr. (Retired)

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