Things That Matter

Here’s Why Trump Is Wrong When He Says He Can Get Rid Of Birthright Citizenship With An Executive Order

President Donald Trump announced that he wants to get rid of birthright citizenship, a right guaranteed by the 14th Amendment to babies born in the U.S. The 14th Amendment also dictates the way state representation is decided via population totals. The president’s threat against the 14th Amendment and birthright citizenship is not new. He has spoken out against it for years, which he refers to it as “chain migration” and “anchor babies.” But first, here’s an explainer about what the 14th Amendment is all about.

The U.S. Constitution states that under the 14th Amendment, all people born or naturalized in the United States are citizens.

In 1868, the 14th Amendment was ratified in the constitution, and while it’s an extensive and detailed law that includes five sections, the gist is:

“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. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

The last part is particularly interesting because it says: “The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.” This means that it’s the job of Congress to make sure that the law is protected, and that the people are protected under it as well.

In an interview with Axios, Trump incorrectly said: “We’re the only country in the world where a person comes in and has a baby, and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States for 85 years, with all of those benefits. It’s ridiculous. It’s ridiculous. And it has to end.”

There are 30 countries, including Canada and Mexico, that have the same law giving citizenship to all people born in that country.

Trump said that he could revoke the 14th Amendment exclusively by signing an Executive Order, but that is wrong.

“It was always told to me that you needed a constitutional amendment. Guess what? You don’t,” Trump said in the interview, adding that. You can definitely do it with an Act of Congress. But now they’re saying I can do it just with an executive order.” He ended by saying: “It’s in the process. It’ll happen with an executive order.”

The president fails to comprehend that his signature cannot modify the constitution simply because he is the president.  If that were the case, the constitution could be changed at any moment by any president.

Instead, an amendment needs to be proposed by two-thirds of the Congress or by a constitutional convention by two-thirds of state legislatures.

After a couple of months of announcing his presidential run he said, in 2015, that he would look into whether or not the 14 Amendment applied to children he called “anchor babies.”

Trump has spent his presidency furthering an anti-immigrant agenda by applying travel bans to predominately Muslim countries, attempting to block DACA, threatening to revoke asylum laws and revamping ICE protocol. Each time he has attempted to implement laws against these groups, lawyers have continuously brought lawsuits against him, and won.

“Birthright citizenship is a fundamental right cherished by Americans since the abolition of slavery,” The Southern Poverty Law Center said in a statement. “Immigrants and their children make this nation great.  We should celebrate our nation’s diversity, and not demonize our citizens.  We won’t hesitate to legally act if President Trump attempts to undermine our Constitution and the right of citizens born in the United States.”

Political pundits and immigration activists say the latest announcement is a distraction as midterm elections draw closer.

While Axios says that these words by Trump is his “most dramatic move yet” against the 14th Amendment, we know he cannot do this.

Trump has spoken out many times against immigrants including the recent caravan of refugees from Central America. The caravan is still hundreds of miles away from the U.S. and are walking to the border. They are expected to arrive to the U.S. and legally ask for asylum in about a month, long after the midterm elections.

The president’s rhetoric has been blamed for fueling extremists, such as the recent explosive devices sent by a Florida man, and the Pittsburgh killing of 11 Jewish individuals by a white nationalist.

The president has yet to comment further about his attempt to veto a constitutional law, which would be unconstitutional.


READ: The Trump Administration Is Quietly Trying To Undo The Flores Agreement To Indefinitely Detain Children

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AOC Gets Under Ted Cruz’s Skin With Crack About His Mexican Getaway After He Accuses Her Of Pushing For ‘open borders’

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AOC Gets Under Ted Cruz’s Skin With Crack About His Mexican Getaway After He Accuses Her Of Pushing For ‘open borders’

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ted Cruz are at it again on Twitter. This time it’s about immigration policy. After recently traveling to the US-Mexican border to underline the recent rise in immigration, Cruz accused AOC of pushing for a “full open borders” policy.

And of course, AOC got him with some solid zingers.

AOC in turn hit back at Cruz for recently fleeing his home state of Texas during its power grid collapse to vacation in Cancún.

In response to Cruz’s attack, AOC suggested Mexico avoid allowing Cruz in the next time he attempts to vacation there. She also called on him to resign from office for his attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.

“Ted, this is pretty rich coming from someone who fled their own home (and responsibilities) during an environmental crisis to cross the border and seek refuge in Mexico,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted. “Also you funded cages, expanded cages, and yet you’re complaining about cages. You have no policy, just puff.”

Ocasio-Cortez accused Republicans of hypocritically attacking the current administration’s detention of migrant children at the border after they supported President Donald Trump’s policy of separating migrant parents from their children.

Currently, Democrats like AOC are calling on Biden to impliment more liberal immigration policies.

Republicans have strongly expressed their dislike for the recent rise in migrants which has come as a result of Biden’s reversal of Trump’s most rigid border policies.

AOC is currently a co-sponsor of the Roadmap to Freedom resolution. The resolution calls on the Federal Government to develop and implement a Roadmap to Freedom “in order to overhaul the outdated immigration system in the United States that has gone without significant reform for decades, and to relieve the great human impact an unjust system bears on communities around the country.”

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9-Year-Old Migrant Girl Drowns While Trying to Cross the Rio Grande in the U.S.

Things That Matter

9-Year-Old Migrant Girl Drowns While Trying to Cross the Rio Grande in the U.S.

Photo via Getty Images

On March 20th, U.S. Border Patrol agents found a 9-year-old migrant girl unresponsive along with her mother and sibling on an island in the Rio Grande.

U.S. Border Patrol agents attempted to resuscitate the family. The agents were able to revive the mother and her younger, 3-year-old child. The Border Patrol agents transferred the 9-year-old migrant girl to emergency medics in emergency medics in Eagle Pass, Texas, but she remained unresponsive.

In the end, the 9-year-old migrant girl died–the cause of death being drowning.

The mother of the two children was Guatemalan while the two children were born in Mexico.

The death of the 9-year-old migrant girl is notable because this is the first migrant child death recorded in this current migration surge. And experts worry that it won’t be the last.

And while this is the first child death, it is not the only migrant who has died trying to make it across the border. On Wednesday, a Cuban man drowned while trying to swim across the border between Tijuana and San Diego. He was the second migrant to drown in just a two-week period.

Why is this happening?

According to some reports, the reason so many migrants are heading towards the U.S. right now is “because President Trump is gone”. They believe they have a better chance of claiming asylum in the U.S.

Another factor to take into consideration is that a large number of these migrants are unaccompanied minors. According to migrant services volunteer Ruben Garcia, Title 42 is actually having the opposite effect of its intent. President Trump enacted Title 42 to prevent immigration during COVID-19 for “safety reasons”.

“Families that have been expelled multiple times that are traveling with children,” Garcia told PBS News Hour. “Some of them are making the decision to send their children in by themselves, because they have families someplace in the U.S., and they know their children will be released to them.”

Is there a “border crisis”?

That depends on who you ask. According to some experts, the numbers of migrants heading to the U.S./Mexico border aren’t out-of-the-ordinary considering the time of year and the fact that COVID-19 made traveling last year virtually impossible.

According to Tom Wong of the University of California at San Diego’s U.S. Immigration Policy Center, there is no “border crisis”. “This year looks like the usual seasonal increase, plus migrants who would have come last year but could not,” Wong says.

As the Washington Post explained: “What we’re seeing right now is a predictable seasonal shift. When the numbers drop again in June and July, policymakers may be tempted to claim that their deterrence policies succeeded.”

What is the Biden Administration planning on doing about it?

As of now, it is pretty evident that the Biden Administration has not been handling this migrant surge well, despite ample warning from experts. As of now, President Biden has put Vice President Harris in charge of handling the issues at the border.

As of now, the game plan is still very vague. But in the past, the Biden Administration has stated that they plan to fix the migrant surge at the source. That means providing more aid to Central America in order to prevent further corruption of elected officials.

They also want to put in place a plan that processes children and minors as refugees in their own countries before they travel to the U.S. The government had not tested these plans and they may take years to implement. Here’s to hoping that these changes will prevent a case like the death of the 9-year-old migrant girl.

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