Jus Soli

February 24, 2005

I will be on Univision San Diego tonight at 6PM commenting on a congressional bill that seeks to change the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. The 14th Amendment guarantees that “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.” The new bill would prevent citizenship by birth to those born to non-citizen or lawful permanent resident parents. This would be a drastic departure from the fundamental principle of “jus soli” (meaning the right of territory or by birth) that has guided citizenship laws in the U.S. and countries around the world. The 14th Amendment was ratified in 1868 and has been codified in the Immigration and Nationality Act.

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