President Trump Plans to End Unrestricted Birthright Citizenship (“Jus Soli”) for Certain Children Born in the USA

The Associated Press reported this morning that President Trump plans to end birthright citizenship in the USA, and that he believes that this action can be implemented through a simple Executive Order.  By way of background, Birthright Citizenship is guaranteed by the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, which states, “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.”

President Trump is reported to have stated that, “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.”

However such a statement would not be correct, as at least three dozen other countries, including Canada and Mexico, follow the principles of “Jus Soli”, Latin for “right of the soil”, as a near unconditional basis for citizenship.

If the President is somehow able to end unrestricted “Jus Soli” birthright citizenship, I presume it will be replaced by a more restrictive “Lex Soli” variant (which requires that at least one of the child’s parents be a citizen, national or legal permanent resident of the state in question at time of the child’s birth), as is the case in the UK, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, France, Spain Germany, Hong Kong, Greece, Portugal, and others.

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