Obama is a U.S. citizen, no matter where he was born.
I’ve made this same point before, with no effect. So maybe now that Byron York is writing about the latest “Obama citizenship” flap, we can make some headway.
The Constitution specifies that a president must be a “natural born citizen” of the United States, but it does not define the term. The Supreme Court has never clarified the issue, but there is a law, 8 U.S. Code 1401, that spells out in detail who is a citizen.
The law uses the phrase “citizens of the United States at birth” and lists categories of people who fit that description.
First, there are people born inside the United States. No question about that; their citizenship is established by the 14th Amendment.
Then there are the people who are born outside the United States to parents who are both American citizens, provided one of them has lived in the U.S. for any period of time. And then there are the people who are born outside the United States to one parent who is a U.S. citizen and the other who is an alien, provided the citizen parent lived in the United States or its possessions for at least five years, at least two of them after age 14.
Obama’s mother fits those criteria. She was a U.S. citizen, born, bred, and having spent the vast majority of her life within our borders. Therefore Obama is a U.S. citizen. Period. Maybe some publisher did write years ago that Obama was born in Kenya. Maybe Michelle Obama did say so publicly. Maybe Obama himself has said so, or at least hasn’t automatically corrected people who said so. If he did, then shame on him for falsifying his own backstory. But it has no bearing on his U.S. citizenship.
It’s true, as York points out, that neither the Constitution nor the laws anywhere conflate “natural born citizen” with “citizen of the United States at birth.” But, come on. If they don’t mean the same damned thing, then what could they mean?
(Posted by The TrogloPundit.)