Talk radio star and Constitutional scholar Mark Levin slammed Speaker of the House Paul Ryan for saying that the 14th Amendment bestows “birthright citizenship” on anyone born inside our borders. Levin says there is no such constitutional rule.
Levin addressed the issue on his October 30 broadcast where he lit into Ryan for his absurd characterization of the law.
“There’s been no law passed that conveys birthright citizenship onto illegal aliens. There’s been no Supreme Court decision that definitively confers birthright citizenship onto illegal alien children,” Levin began. “Nobody’s a hundred percent certain how this came to be. But everybody seems to be a hundred percent certain that the president can’t fix it. … Well, does the Constitution confer birthright citizenship on the children of illegal aliens? Of course it doesn’t!”
Levin then played a previous audio clip where he explained how those who crafted the original amendment felt about what they were doing with the 14th Amendment:
“‘This will not of course include persons born in the United States who are foreigners, aliens … but will include every other class of persons. It settles the great question of citizenship.’ … Is it not plain English? Is he not as clear as can be that it does not include aliens, it does not include foreigners. … The republican basis for citizenship is consent! Consent of the country! You can’t self-immigrate. You can’t claim jurisdiction because you happen to walk into the United States.”
“What is the bottom line here? Let’s number this: They wanted to make certain that former slaves would be treated as citizens of the United States, because certain states were still resistant. … They exempted Indians, because Indians still, certainly back then, were often considered citizens of particular tribes. But these actually were very forward-looking individuals. They specifically excluded aliens and foreigners.”
Levin also spoke to the issue with Fox News host Sean Hannity back in 2015.
Levin told Hannity that the 14th Amendment does not give citizenship to children of illegal immigrants who are born in the US.
The radio talker said that those claiming that the Constitution allows birthright citizenship are dead wrong. Levin said that Article 1 Section 8 of the Constitution grants absolute power to Congress to establish a uniform rule of naturalization.
Levin went on to explain that means that only Congress — not a president or the courts — has the power to regulate immigration.
“Of course Trump is right and Cruz is right and Sessions is right. They’re all right,” Levin said of those claiming then that birthright citizenship does not exist.
“If you want a policy of open borders, that anybody born here should become a United States citizen, you amend the Constitution,” Levin said. “We don’t have to amend the Constitution. It says what we say it says. By statute, going forward, prospectively, Congress can in fact say … ‘No, you cannot make children of illegal aliens American citizens automatically.'”
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.Don't forget to Like Godfather Politics on Facebook and Twitter, and visit our friends at RepublicanLegion.com.
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