Trump 'Seriously' Considering Executive Order to End Birthright Citizenship
President says ending birthright citizenship back on his agenda
President Donald Trump revealed Wednesday he is "seriously" considering using an executive order to end birthright citizenship for babies born in the U.S. to illegal immigrant mothers.
“We are looking at birthright citizenship very seriously,” the president told reporters at the White House as he renewed his threat to cut off the automatic policy.
Trump didn't reveal which specific steps he is eyeing, however, and legal scholars say the U.S. Constitution will be a major hurdle.
According to the 14th Amendment; “all persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof are citizens of the United States.”
The Supreme Court has never ruled specifically on a modern case involving an illegal immigrant, and there is some gray area in the “subject to the jurisdiction” language.
Most legal scholars who have looked at the issue say they expect the courts would rule that it does grant automatic citizenship, though a minority of scholars argue that there’s room to maneuver.
Trump has said in the past that he disagrees with birthright citizenship, noting in a 2018 interview with Axios that the law is “ridiculous” and “has to end.”
Trump repeated this idea Wednesday, saying the administration is looking at it “very seriously.”
A reporter asked Trump if he plans to issue an executive order on birthright citizenship, and Trump appeared to confirm the idea is being looked at “very seriously.”
“We’re looking at that very seriously, birthright citizenship, where you have a baby on our land — you walk over the border and have a baby,” Trump told reporters.
“Congratulations, the baby is now a U.S. citizen. We’re looking at it very, very seriously.
"I don’t know how you found that out, but that’s very good.
"We are looking at birthright citizenship very seriously.”
“It’s frankly ridiculous.”
Trump’s 2018 comments received pushback, with former Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan saying he “obviously” can’t get rid of birthright citizenship using an executive order, The New York Times previously reported.
Trump also touted this idea during his presidential campaign but has not yet gone through with it.