Read it here. One of our loyal readers forwarded us a chain e-mail with several claims that we just couldn't pass up.
In the article, the headline is further expanded upon, "Under growing pressure from several groups, Justice Antonin Scalia announced that the Supreme Court agreed on Tuesday to hear arguments concerning Obama's legal eligibility to serve as President in a case brought by Leo Donofrio of New Jersey. For a plethora of reasons, we didn't expect that this was a legitimate AP article, but we decided to check with them anyway.
It is not, according to Jack Stokes, an AP spokesperson. Still, maybe, somehow, this forged article contains some factual information? Donofrio claimed that since Obama's father was a British citizen, Obama was granted dual citizenship at birth and therefore was not eligible to be elected President. The case was submitted to the Supreme Court, but the court did not agree to hear it.
The first tidbit that tipped us off was that the e-mail said Justice Scalia announced that the court agreed to hear arguments. That's not how it works.
In order for the Supreme Court to hear a case, at least four justices have to be in favor of hearing it. At that point they issue a "writ of certiorari,'' colloquially reffered to as "cert. Such information typically comes from the court's public information office.
I can think of three further reasons that the timing is right. Above all, changing the Constitution to allow immigrants to become president would send a profoundly resonant pro-immigration image at a moment when it is desperately needed.
Presumably, President Donald Trump would or at least should have a hard time opposing an amendment that would allow his wife, Melania, to run for president without anyone questioning her loyalty. The conventional view is that it means anyone born in the U. That would cover Cruz, born in Canada to a father who was born in Cuba and an American mother.
Others think the term included only U. The legal historian Tom Lee argues compellingly that British law at the time gave the term a slightly broader meaning, including also children of U. The original purpose of the provision is also a bit obscure. Notably, Jay was focused on the commander in chief, not the president — and he did not know that the two jobs would be fused into one.
However created, the natural born requirement now deserves to go. Loyalty can be established by citizenship and residency.
Adding birth is archaic at best, and flat-out discriminatory at worst. It will necessarily be hard to make the change when one or the other party has a good potential presidential candidate born outside the U.
Politics will motivate the other party to drag its feet. Much better to act now, when no obvious naturalized candidate is in play. No dangerous potential candidate has been headed off by being born abroad. The falsehood of the charge notwithstanding, things would have been far better had there been no way to say Obama was barred from the presidency by foreign birth.
The principle should be clear: All citizens are equal in the eyes of the law when it comes to the presidency. Trump supporters might see a proposed amendment as a great opportunity to push a xenophobic, nativist agenda.