by: the Common Constitutionalist
Yesterday I wrote an article regarding Donald Trump’s immigration platform, or more to the point, how to prevent illegal immigration and what to do with the ones who are already here. You may review it here.
In it I referenced The Donald’s now infamous retort to Chuck Todd claiming that by deported all illegals, Trump would be breaking up families and attempting to deport people with birthright citizenship. I quoted Trump telling Todd that he would keep the families together, “but they have to go.” I can’t remember a time when one statement has caused so much angst.
Robert Tracinski at The Federalist argues that deporting birthright citizens would be a direct assault on the Constitution and “the thousand year history of English common law.”
He says to do so, “requires precisely the sort of thing conservatives are supposed to be against.” He explains that at the time of the founding, America embraced birthright citizenship – that “for the Founders, rejecting jus soli or birthright citizenship would have meant either greatly restricting the growth and expansion of the new nation or, more likely, creating a system in which there was a large and growing sub-population of people who were disenfranchised in the land of their own birth. An idea totally incompatible with a government based on the consent of the governed.”
Tracinski then moves on to the 14th amendment, which is the centerpiece of the argument for birthright citizenship. The 14th amendment was the second post Civil War amendment and was written to bestow citizenship on the freed slaves.