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Natural Born Citizen for Dummies

Much is being blogged about natural born citizenship since Barack Obama ran for president. There are lengthy legal-sounding arguments and long quotations from books. If you want an advanced degree in Natural Born Citizen, there’s an incredible and growing repository of facts and documents over at What’s Your Evidence? and The Great Mother of All Natural Born Citizenship Quotation Pages.  The Wikipedia article is good too. But for folks who would like just the basics, Obama Conspiracy Theories Presents:

NBC for Dummies

As seen on TV

Natural Born Citizen For Dummies

The Constitution

The Constitution of the United States uses the phrase “natural born citizen” but doesn’t define it. In fact the Constitution does not even define citizen except to say that some are “natural born” and some are “naturalized”. In the beginning, citizenship was defined by the States.

Where can we get a definition?

There are two approaches. One is to try to figure out what was in the minds of the people who wrote and ratified the Constitution (they’re all dead) or to rely on what the law was at the time the Constitution was written, specifically British Common Law. The most reasonable approach says that if the framers of the Constitution intended “natural born citizen” to mean something at different from Common Law, then they would have written it down.

The Constitution was written by former British citizens (many British-trained lawyers like John Rutledge who was chairman of the Committee of Detail who wrote the first draft of the Constitution), and it was their view that the United States where they lived was more important to them than their heritage as subjects of the King of England. They had a bias for place over blood line.

What does British Common Law say?

There are several court cases where judges’ opinions give a survey of Common Law as regards citizenship. The most authoritative and widely cited of these surveys is from the Unites States Supreme Court in the case of United States v. Wong Kim Ark. In that decision, the Court said of British Common Law:

Children, born in England, of such aliens [those in amity - friendship], were therefore natural-born subjects. But the children, born within the realm, of foreign ambassadors, or the children of alien enemies, born during and within their hostile occupation of part of the king’s dominions, were not natural-born subjects, because not born within the allegiance, the obedience, or the power, or, as would be said at this day, within the jurisdiction, of the king.

and later

‘Subject’ and ‘citizen’ are, in a degree, convertible terms as applied to natives; and though the term ‘citizen’ seems to be appropriate to republican freemen, yet we are, equally with the inhabitants of all other countries, ‘subjects,’ for we are equally bound by allegiance and subjection to the government and law of the land.

The preceding short excerpts from Wong are faithful to the conclusion of the entire case.

Are there any laws or court decisions that help us out?

While not a binding precedent, a very interesting case did come before the Supreme Court of New York in 1844, Lynch v. Clarke where the judge opined:

By the common law, all persons born within the ligeance of the crown of England, were natural born subject, without reference to the status or condition of their parents.

and

The term citizen, was used in the constitution as a word, the meaning of which was already established and well understood. And the constitution itself contains a direct recognition of the subsisting common law principle, in the section which defines the qualification of the President. “No person except a natural born citizen, or a citizen of the United States at the time of the adoption of this constitution, shall be eligible to the office of President,” … The only standard which then existed, of a natural born citizen, was the rule of the common law, and no different standard has been adopted since. Suppose a person should be elected President who was native born, but of alien parents, could there be any reasonable doubt that he was eligible under the constitution? I think not.

While there are many more citations that could be given, the preceding is faithful to the consensus of the courts throughout America’s history.

What about the 14th Amendment?

The 14th Amendment (1868) begins:

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 14th Amendment shows us that there are only two kinds of citizen, born or naturalized. This Amendment was in force at the time United States v. Wong Kim Ark was decided, and it informed that decision. The Supreme Court in Wong strongly affirmed that all persons born in the United States are fully and completely under the jurisdiction of the United States (including Mr. Wong the child of two Chinese citizen parents subjects) unless we make exception in our law (such as for ambassadors and their families).

I heard somebody say that all the Congressmen know that two citizen parents are required to be a United States Citizen.

It is fair to say that the sentiment of Congress on this issue is proven by their certification of the election of 2008 where the winner was born in the United States, but of only one citizen parent. Their view could be summed up in the statement by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina who said: “Every child born in the United States is a natural-born United States citizen except for the children of diplomats.”

I saw a YouTube video that says something completely different.

They’re wrong. For more on that subject and others, check out the other articles on citizenship on this web site.

Summary

While not every odd-ball case of natural born citizenship is decided, the one thing that has been understood from the beginning of our nation: persons born in the United States are natural born citizens.

Questions?

Ask them in the comments section that follows. Thanks for visiting.

new.gif (147 bytes) Natural Born Timeline – a brief history of natural born citizenship.

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46 Responses to Natural Born Citizen for Dummies

  1. avatar
    Hitandrun January 11, 2009 at 6:16 pm #

    Nice summary, Doc.

    On defining NBC, Doc writes, “There are two approaches[...]”

    But isn’t another that of determining (as best we can) the understanding of the ratifying public at the time?

    Doc then states, “The Constitution was written by British citizens[...]”

    True, the Founding Rebels remained inalienable if treasonous British subjects in the eyes of the British crown. But in their own eyes they had replaced British with independent US citizenship, and as US (not British) citizens had authored the Constitution.

    The Wong decision simply affirmed that all born on US soil and completely subject to US jurisdiction were US citizens at birth, thus excluding not only foreign diplomat families and enemy combatant families but tribal treaty native Americans as well. The scope of further Congressional naturalization authority could not Constitutionally extend beyond these inclusion and exclusion limits.

    Congressional certification of election results is Constitutionally irrelevant where the ‘winner’ is Constitutionally ineligible. Were Mr Obama proved born outside of US jurisdiction, existing law at the time would render him legally ineligible today to serve as President, regardless of those results.

    Finally, I’d amend Doc’s final assertion to read: “persons born in the United States and under its complete jurisdiciton are natural born citizens of the United States.”

    Regrettably, Mr Obama’s obstructionist conduct has not yet permitted a definitive conclusion as to his natural born status, or lack thereof.

    Stay tuned,
    Hitandrun

  2. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 11, 2009 at 6:39 pm #

    Hitandrun said: “But isn’t another that of determining (as best we can) the understanding of the ratifying public at the time?”

    First note that the “public” did not ratify the Constitution. It was ratified by state legislatures. Second, I know of nothing of significance that would warrant inclusion in the article. Many framers of the Constitution were lawyers, and many of those, like John Rutledge (the primary author of the Constitution1) were trained in England. So it makes all the sense in the world that the document was founded on the law these men knew and practiced.

    While it is true that the Wong case is not about “natural born citizenship”, it is still instructive in its survey of the existing law on citizenship, what is the proper interpretive framework is (they cited English Common Law, and they did not cite the Swiss philosopher Vattel).

    For simplicity, I did omit the “except for the children of ambassadors and foreign combatants”. But the language in Wong forcefully states that those born here are under our “complete jurisdiction”. So whether we have the word “complete” or not is moot for the purposes of this web site.

    1John Rutledge was chairman of the Committee of Detail

    On July 24, 1787, the Federal Convention appointed a five-man Committee of Detail, chaired by John Rutledge of South Carolina, to prepare a draft constitution that encompassed the results of deliberations up to that point. On August 6, the Committee submitted the document (as a printed broadside). There were substantial differences between this draft and the later version written by the Committee of Style, which was charged with fashioning the final draft. Perhaps the most dramatic change is what follows the opening the line of “We the People.”

    American Treasures – The Library of Congress

  3. avatar
    Hitandrun January 11, 2009 at 7:06 pm #

    But Doc,
    Didn’t the voting public at the time ratify the Constitution through their State legislatures? After all, it’s “We the People”, not “We the State legislators”. No?

    And didn’t Wong in effect rule that those born here are under our complete jurisdiction, except for those not under our complete jurisdicion? Not moot at all.

    Stay well,
    Hitandrun

  4. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 11, 2009 at 7:28 pm #

    Wong makes it clear who is under our complete jurisdiction and who is not. The only exceptions to complete jurisdiction are the ambassador’s families, invading armies, and at that time the Indian tribes. Go read it yourself; the link is in the main article. It’ll do you good to spend some time with this very important primary source.

    Unless you’re claiming Barack Obama Sr. was a Kenyan Ambassador and enjoyed diplomatic immunity, or that he was part of an invading army and Barack Jr. was born in occupied Kenyan territory in Honolulu, or that Obama was sired by insemination from frozen semen of a 150-year-old American Indian, then it is moot.

  5. avatar
    laughinghysterically January 11, 2009 at 8:01 pm #

    Not to mention the fact that Wong is not controlling precedent in this matter.

    There is an entire body of statutory law and case law since Wong, not to mention the 14 Amendment. Law evolves over time, that was the entire point of the US Constitution.

    While one could argue that SCOTUS has never directly treated the NBC issue for purposes of Presidential eligibility, the interpretation of the phrase now would be informed by ALL the related law on citizenship since the Founding–NOT JUST what the ideas of the Founders were at that specific time in history.

  6. avatar
    Hitandrun January 11, 2009 at 8:12 pm #

    Doc,
    As you so often do, you mistakenly assume your interlocutors have not read or are not familiar with the primary sources–their understanding and interpretation of them being inexplicably at variance with your own. I do not assume likewise in your case, nor will I recommend that you spend more time with them.

    Thanks again for so ably shepherding this excellent site.

    Hitandrun

  7. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 11, 2009 at 8:18 pm #

    The 14th Amendment precedes Wong.

  8. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 11, 2009 at 8:26 pm #

    I apologize if I jumped to a mistaken conclusion. I thought your comment on Wong was not consistent with having read it.

  9. avatar
    bogus info January 11, 2009 at 8:33 pm #

    For every action, there is a reaction. What do you make of this?

    http://www.oilforimmigration.org/facts/?p=736

  10. avatar
    laughinghysterically January 11, 2009 at 8:58 pm #

    Bogus:
    I think it’s just more craziness. You can literally smell the desperation on many of these sites at this point, as we suspected, they are amping up the crazy this week. I am sure that will result in a solution for them, or not! Sheesh!

  11. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 11, 2009 at 9:02 pm #

    I am in South Carolina and I can assure you, rumors to the contrary, that we are not about to secede again.

  12. avatar
    laughinghysterically January 11, 2009 at 9:07 pm #

    And from here in NY, I can assure you we are not about to let that happen.

  13. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 11, 2009 at 10:23 pm #

    This is the reply I posted over at (the aptly named) The Betrayal blog:

    There is not now, nor has there ever been, any Constitutional requirement that a natural born citizen have citizen parents. It was not in law at the time the Constitution was ratified, is not the in Constitution, it is not in the US Code and it is not in any court decision since. And I challenge anyone who thinks otherwise to cite the section from the Constitution, the provision in the US Code or the court decision that says otherwise (except that it be twisted falsely through logical fallacy). You cannot because it does not exist.

    In 1844 a New York judge in the opinion of Lynch v. Clarke said:

    “Suppose a person should be elected President who was native born, but of alien parents, could there be any reasonable doubt that he was eligible under the constitution? I think not.”

    The analysis of the history of citizenship law supporting the preceding aside comment is as valid today as it was in 1844, and fairly represents the entire history of court statements on this subject. Full text of Lynch available here.

    I hope no member of the armed forces will be made into a traitor through the disinformation of legal charlatans.

  14. avatar
    bogus info January 11, 2009 at 11:30 pm #

    Now there is a “template” for a lawsuit at that site I guess from Doc Orly’s. LOL. Go take a look. There are three non active military individuals named (not shown) in this lawsuit. All claim subject to recall. Does three individuals equate to “entire military” or a suit “on behalf of the military?”

  15. avatar
    ahrcanum January 12, 2009 at 1:36 pm #

    I see today that Berg’s motion was “denied before judgment” and that Anderson’s amicus was granted. What the heck, denied b4 judgment? And why grant the amicus unless there are questions still lingering?

  16. avatar
    laughinghysterically January 12, 2009 at 2:50 pm #

    Granting the amicus was simply a procedural formality, look at the other orders as well, they do this all the time. It means nothing, the amicus is moot b/c cert is denied.

    Denied “before judgment” is a result of Berg having filed his petition for cert BEFORE having gotten a judgment on his appeal to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.

    Normal procedure is: 1) you lose in District Court, then 2) you appeal to Circuit Court (the next “higher court” and then, 3) AFTER a judgment in Circuit Court (if you lose) you can petition SCOTUS for cert.

    SCOTUS Rule 11 allows for one to petition SCOTUS for cert on cases of “great public importance” BEFORE receiving a judgment from the Circuit Court on the appeal. So, it essentially lets you “skip” a step. Berg petitioned SCOTUS under Rule 11, thus the “denied before judgment” language from SCOTUS.

    Berg has yet to get a decision from the Third Circuit Court of Appeals about his case. Here, SCOTUS said, NOPE, no dice on getting cert with us. Now, if the Third Circuit ALSO says no dice (dismissed) Berg can try yet again at SCOTUS, and I am sure he will, unfortunately.

    Hope that explains things.

  17. avatar
    bob January 12, 2009 at 5:13 pm #

    Au contraire, dear Doctor,

    Secessionist movements are alive and well in the United States. For a quick listing of some of those movements, see…
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_active_autonomist_and_secessionist_movements#United_States_.28North_America.29

  18. avatar
    bogus info January 12, 2009 at 7:13 pm #

    I believe this was directed to me as “Karen” on the Betrayal blog:

    6 Responses to “Pravda – Obama: Deceiver, Cheat, Swindler, Liar, Fraudster, Con Artist”

    I think this sums it up, I wonder what “Karen” thinks of this:

    “United States v. Wong Kim Ark, 169 U.S. 649 (1898): It was held that a person born within the jurisdiction of the U.S. to non-citizens who “are not employed in any diplomatic or official capacity” is automatically a citizen, per the Fourteenth Amendment. The majority also mentioned what the situation was prior to the Fourteenth Amendment and the U.S. Constitution, by quoting Emerich de Vattel: “The natives, or natural-born citizens, are those born in the country of parents who are citizens. As the society cannot exist and perpetuate itself otherwise than by the children of the citizens, those children naturally follow the condition of their fathers, and succeed to all their rights.” Dissenters in Wong Kim Ark wrote: “it is unreasonable to conclude that natural born citizen’ applied to everybody born within the geographical tract known as the United States, irrespective of circumstances; and that the children of foreigners, happening to be born to them while passing through the country, whether of royal parentage or not, or whether of the Mongolian, Malay, or other race, were eligible to the presidency, while children of our citizens, born abroad, were not.”[14] The majority opinion in Wong Kim Ark did not explicitly disagree with this comment of the dissenters, and instead merely observed that: “The constitution nowhere defines the meaning of these words [citizen and natural born citizen], either by way of inclusion or of exclusion, except in so far as this is done by the affirmative declaration that all persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States.’”[14]”

    Need a bit of help responding to this. What is the source of this?

  19. avatar
    bogus info January 12, 2009 at 8:22 pm #

    Dr. C.,

    Could I have your permission to respond to this comment on the Betrayal blog with a link to your article on “Natural Born Citizenship for Dummies.”? You say it better than I ever could.

  20. avatar
    Tes January 12, 2009 at 9:49 pm #

    Re: “United States v. Wong Kim Ark, 169 U.S. 649 (1898): …. The majority also mentioned what the situation was prior to the Fourteenth Amendment and the U.S. Constitution, by quoting Emerich de Vattel: “The natives, or natural-born citizens, are those born in the country of parents who are citizens. As the society cannot exist and perpetuate itself otherwise than by the children of the citizens, those children naturally follow the condition of their fathers, and succeed to all their rights.”

    — One point: the Court quotes Vattel at 708, for the VIEW of the publicists (NOT the applicable law) prior to the Constitution (not prior to the 14th Amendment).

  21. avatar
    jazz January 12, 2009 at 10:29 pm #

    @Dr. Conspiracy.

    I know this post is not about the berg case but, I was wondering what does the granted brief by the surpreme court in bergs case mean???

    I know his over all case was denied, but a brief filed by Bill Anderson was granted.

    Can you tell me what this means??? I asked in the “berg v. Obama bites the dust” post but, I didn’t get an answer.

  22. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 13, 2009 at 12:06 am #

    It means that the court accepted Anderson’s brief and considered it along with Berg’s brief, and dismissed the whole shootin’ match.

  23. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 13, 2009 at 12:21 am #

    The “source” is United States v. Wong Kim Ark paragraph 134. The problem is that the true quote from Vattel in Wong is “Before the Revolution, the views of the publicists had been thus put by Vattel: ‘The natives, or natural-born citizens…” not that the “situation was”.

    Before the Revolution, the law of America was that of Britain, and Wong states that quite plainly in Paragraph 15, which says:

    It thus clearly appears that by the law of England for the last three centuries, beginning before the settlement of this country, and continuing to the present day, aliens, while residing in the dominions possessed by the crown of England, were within the allegiance, the obedience, the faith or loyalty, the protection, the power, and the jurisdiction of the English sovereign; and therefore every child born in England of alien parents was a natural-born subject, unless the child of an ambassador or other diplomatic agent of a foreign state, or of an alien enemy in hostile occupation of the place where the child was born.

    De Vattel himself near that quotation notes that England is an exception to what other countries in Europe did.

    I am working on a large article that addresses de Vattel and similar.

  24. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 13, 2009 at 12:28 am #

    Yes, you may post links to here there (wherever there is). However, a much larger and more comprehensive article on natural born citizenship is in the works. By the way, did you see the new artwork I added to the Dummies article this afternoon?

  25. avatar
    bogus info January 13, 2009 at 5:31 am #

    Dr. C.,

    I thought that was taken from Kim Wong Arc. These Supreme court decisions can be hard for people without a legal/law background to understand. I come away after reading the decision several times that nbc means place of birth whereas others come away thinking it means blood. I consider myself somewhat? intelligent but I struggle with legal documents. Sometimes I think lawyers have done this by design to require the hiring of a lawyer for every little transaction. I remember the days when your “handshake” was you bond with very little “documentation” of the transaction. And, I think these involved contracts today sometimes cause people to litigate more, not less. “Keep it simple.” But, honest people, with or without a contract, will always do the right thing. Therein lies the problem today.

    I am going to post your link on the “dummies” article and “there” is the Betrayal website. Thanks.

    When researching this issue, here is a article to the extreme of someone’s “interpretation of the 14th Amendment”. Thus, 3 classes of citizens. Somehow, I don’t agree that this is what our founding fathers meant.

    http://www.originalintent.org/edu/14thamend.php

    Here is another post to me on that website:

    JeffM // Jan 13, 2009 at 5:10 am
    Karen,

    There is no “out of context here”. Understand the facts.

    FACT 1: Obama admits dual citizenship at birth.

    FACT 2: Obama admits he let his citizenship lapse with Kenya. Unfortunately for him he never admits to renouncing his British citizenship after age 18 as required by the British Nationality Act of 1948. And since he was not a resident of Kenya at the time, he retained his British citizenship, Kenyan citizenship, and U.S. citizenship (see Dual Citizenship section under Kenyan Constitution).

    FACT 3: De Vattel’s Law of Nations (the holy grail of the Constitution framers) defines Natural Born Citizenship to be born to at least a citizen father on sovereign soil. The supreme court has used the Law of Nations repeatedly over the past 200 years whenever international law is in question (which it clearly is in this case). Scalia has even referenced it in a case in early 2008.

    FACT 4: British Common law defined Natural born subjects to be British born to the father during the time of the American Revolution. Natural Born means just that, born under Natural law, i.e. born to the father. Almost every other country in the world understands Natural Law to be “citizenship passed down by the father to the son/daughter”, even today. We as Americans are idiots. We think all other nations are as liberal as we are regarding citizenship. The framers used this concept, but changed the subject to citizenship as we are a republic, not a monarchy.

    FACT 5: Perkins v. Elg has given examples of Natural Born Citizens, and Obama would not be classified as a Natural Born Citizen based on their decision.

    FACT 6: Obama admitted he was a “Citizen of the World”. You can’t be a Citizen of the World and owe allegiance to the United States. Sorry, it can’t be done.

    FACT 7: Stanley Ann Dunham was not old enough to pass citizenship to Obama by herself. U.S. Statute was written to prevent generations of U.S. citizens being born overseas to underaged, single, and/or non-resident citizens.

    FACT 8: Amendment 14 was designed to make blacks Citizens instead of property, not to clarify what the words “Natural Born” meant. The intent was never to make them Natural Born Citizens. After all, slaves couldn’t vote then, and therefore no one would elect them as President because no blacks would be able to vote for him anyway.

    FACT 9: US Wong Ark Kim clarified “Native Born” status, which is not the same as “Natural Born” status. Native Born means born on U.S. soil. Natural Born means born on U.S. soil to a citizen father (do I have to mention Natural Law again?). Interestingly enough Obama on his own site uses “Native Born” instead of “Natural Born”. Why is that? A: Obama knows he’s not Natural Born. Obama know’s he’s Native Born, i.e. born in Hawaii.

    FACT 10: Obama promised “transparency” during his campaign. Instead we see a proverbial FT. KNOX surrounding any and all paperwork that would vet him as a candidate and clarify his citizenship status, let alone his natural born citizenship status.

    FACT 11: Loyal Citizens of the United States are proud of their nation and would cart their paperwork on a giant stick and parade it around the Capitol Building instead of hide it under a legal rock. If you were up for POTUS, would you hide your paperwork telling the world you are “one of us loyal Natural Born Citizens”? Wait, don’t answer that.

    FACT 12: It is generally understood by the U.S. State Department that Natural Born Citizens are ones born to two citizen parents on U.S. soil (what a concidence!). A simple search on their web site will tell you this. They do, however, admit that the supreme court has never truly clarified what it means (they’re wrong of course, but that’s a different topic of discussion).

    FACT 13: Our framers knew dual citizenship at birth was BAD. So BAD in fact, the U.S. fought the British in the War of 1812 over it.

    FACT 14: As we all know, Obama “signed off” on SR 511, which stated Natural Born Citizens are born to 2 citizen parents. Although it is not law, it is a legal document that can be used to clarify Obama’s understanding of its definition. We know he knows that we know he’s not eligible.

  26. avatar
    bogus info January 13, 2009 at 6:49 am #

    Dr. C.,

    Fact # 12 in the post above from the Betrayal website. I went to the U.S. State Department and did a search for citizenship, natural born citizenship and nothing but this came up. There is nothing on the website itself that speaks to NBC.

    [PDF] CRS Report for Congress … Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution specifies that, to be President or Vice
    President, a person must be a natural-born citizen of the United States, at …
    fpc.state.gov/documents/organization/22616.pdf – 2009-01-12
    [ More results from fpc.state.gov/documents/organization ]

  27. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 13, 2009 at 7:31 am #

    Too long to answer not, but as I said, I am working on a longer article that takes this on. Quick notes.
    1. True
    2. I believe this is false
    3. It is not the “holy grail”, just influential, and influential especially in international relationship. It’s ideas of citizenship were not relied upon.
    4. I know of no document that says that a Natural born Citizen is born under natural law. De Vattel’s idea of citizenship ONLY through heredity was clearly never US law.
    5. Elg is not about natural born citizenship, and does not give an exhaustive list of who is a natural born citizen, only Elg.
    6. Has no legal significance.
    7. True, bit inconsequential since Obama has citizenship by being born in the US.
    8. A racist comment. While I don’t know for sure, I would presume the 14th amendment does make the freed slaves natural born citizens. It doesn’t matter, as Obama is a natural born citizen apart from the 14th amendment.
    9. Comments about “Obama knows” are fantasy. Wong is an important case, rejecting Vattel’s influence and stating British Common Law is where we should look for answers.
    10. Unfair description.
    11. Unfair description.
    12. I have read the state department material and it does not say this, Where a quote?
    13. False.
    14. Erroneous reading of 511. I have a long collection of letters and comments from Senators stating Obama is eligible to be president. This proves that the unanimous Senate resolution 511 could not mean what 14 asserts.

  28. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 13, 2009 at 7:31 am #

    So they lied. What do you want me to say?

  29. avatar
    SmellyTourist January 13, 2009 at 12:58 pm #

    All those conspiracy theories…most might be correct, but some absolutely solid theories you might not be aware of:
    –Obama will raise taxes
    –…will increase spending
    –and many more

    bark up these, and you’re barking up a good, solid, proven tree.

    http://smellytourist.wordpress.com/2009/01/08/the-lost-cause-and-our-ongoing-effort/

    http://www.smellytourist.wordpress.com
    (STINKING UP WASHINGTON)

  30. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 13, 2009 at 2:52 pm #

    Ah well, if you want to talk about real issues, this is not the place. We only do conspiracy theories and crank lawsuits.

  31. avatar
    bogus info January 13, 2009 at 3:01 pm #

    ROTFL! Good one.

  32. avatar
    Hitandrun January 20, 2009 at 7:35 pm #

    Doc,
    You describe Mr. Wong as “the child of two Chinese citizen parents”. I take it you meant “non-citizen parents”. No?

    Hitand run

  33. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 20, 2009 at 7:38 pm #

    “Chinese citizen” means “citizen subjects of China”. Wong’s parents were very definitely citizens subjects–of China.

    At that time the Chinese Exclusion Act prohibited Chinese from becoming naturalized US citizens. One of the issues raised in Wong was that not only were his parents not citizens, but that they could never become citizens.

  34. avatar
    Hitandrun January 20, 2009 at 8:07 pm #

    Doc,
    I thought the point you were making was that these Chinese parents were not US citizens, hence non-citizens. My mistake.

    Hitandrun

  35. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 21, 2009 at 11:27 am #

    I have been corrected. Wong’s parents were “Chinese subjects” rather than “Chinese citizens.” The main article has been changed to reflect the correct term.

  36. avatar
    Jasper James January 21, 2009 at 9:59 pm #

    I am wondering if a person is born – not in a hospital, but at home, what proof does that person have concerning his place of birth besides the witness of the parents? And if that person had registered the birth – the information on the registration form would indicate that person was born exactly where the registration indicated. So a registration of birth would lead to a lot of questions, but I am sure in Hawaii or in any state, when a resident registers the birth of their child, no questions are asked. The COLB that Obama presented provides no real proof of where he was born and the witness’s associated with his birth like the doctors, nurse’s, and other witness’s. A BC is required. I think a presidential candidate should be required to provide verifiable evidence of where he was born. The Hawaii Officials never did verify the COLB was correct, they merely stated that they had his real BC in their archives. This lack of official verification of the COLB could mean a lot of things, but even worse, like I said, the COLB is not sufficient evidence. The COLB says he was born in Hawaii, but was he? I think Berg has observed that Obama has been reluctant to produce a valid BC and the COLB originally posted on the internetlooked bogus and later it turnedto be bogus (although a more officialone wasposted later). I think if Obama was not born in theU.S. that wouldmake the arguments for his being a NBC more difficult but not impossible, since his mother was a NBC. But I would like to add – therecould be much much more to this story that only the BC would provide. If it turns out thatBC reflects a registration of birth, then we would need to investigate who were the witness’s,is there a trail of passport information to support the claim thanObama’s Mother was in the U.S. etc. Who knows the real truth – maybeStanley Anne was really not even his mother.IF the BC is a registration with no witness’s it opens the doors to many more questions thatneed tobe answered. Obama has not been properly vetted. The election is invalid. The people have not been properly informed. There is a crisis of confidence.

  37. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 21, 2009 at 11:03 pm #

    Home births in Honolulu are quite rare. In 1961, there were only 14 non-hospital births for the whole year in the city and only 12 such “non-white” births. Usually, if a child is born at home, they are attended by a midwife and if a midwife delivered Obama, then they would have been required by law to report the birth to the Health Department.

    I don’t understand your term “registration of birth”. All birth are registered–that’s what vital statistics agencies do.

    If the vault record turned up and in the vanishingly small chance indicated a home birth, then it would certainly raise a lot of questions. It wouldn’t be evidence that Obama was not born in Hawaii, but oh it would give the bloggers something to chew on. Maybe Ed Hale can raise a few more thousand dollars to hire another detective.

  38. avatar
    Jasper James January 22, 2009 at 12:49 am #

    My thinking was more along the lines that what law stop’s a person from simply claiming that they had the child at home – and then registered the birth. They don’t need to have a midwife as a witness. Free-birthing is not a sin and is not impossible, humans can give birth without doctors. But, I was thinking, that given the fact there is already evidence thatObama’s mom did not totatly abide in the laws. For example there is some evidence that Obama was adopted by his step-father but its not totatly clear that this really happened. Her Divorce papers and his school records indicate an adoption, but it may not have been official. Obama’s parents apparently changed his name to register him in school in Indonesia, but was that just to get him registered or was he truly adopted. In either case, it’s not at all clear whether he was adopted or not – where is the paper trail on this? I think the Indonesian school registration was bogus, thus proving that they didn’t mind playing games with laws if the risk of getting caught were low, and the rewards were high. I agree that the probability is small that Young 18 YO White Girl would travel to Kenya to have a baby. Also Obama Sr. did not really seem like he was that interested in being a Dad or Husband – so I don’t think he would pay the travel expenses. Never-the-less see the BC would go a long way to clarifying the mystery surround his birth. Both Anne and Obama Sr were educated so it seems odd they would call Obama Sr. African. I realize that the claim is that the form allows a person to write anything on it, but if a nurse was sitting there as the form was being filled out, I am sure she would have corrected the error for themby explaining that African is a persons Country -not his race. However if the birth was some form that they filled out and mailed in – there would be no correction. If a person put “Martian” as race would Hawaii accept that? I don’t really know how loose Hawaii was at allowing people to register a birth that was not in a hospital. The newspaper ad is of course irrelevant if the the registration of the Birth was sufficient to automatically produce the announcement. That reminds that address given seems odd. It was a 5bedroom house 7 miles from the University where Anne and Obama went to school. That’s a long way for student’s to live and it wasn’t where Stanley Anne’s parents lived, and I read that Obama Sr. lived on Campus. So what was that address? Just another mystery surround the COLB. I think a Certification by the DNC would normally be sufficient, but once questioned were raised about his birth location and they did potentially impact his NBC status – I think further investigation by the SOS or the DNC should have been undertaken. For McCain Congress went to the trouble of passing a resolution stating that he was a NBC, given that he was not born on U.S. Soil – but his parents were both U.S. Citizens. Again, I think Berg is just going with the fact that Obama seems reluctant to release his BC, and there other documents that have not clarified his past. So Berg jumped to the conclusion that Obama is hiding information that would damage him. I think a court needs to look at this issue and resolve it. I don’t think there is a conspiracy of silence – but more a conspiracy of indifference. Obama is given a “pass” on everything, at least for now.

  39. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 22, 2009 at 8:01 am #

    I know that there are “evidentiary requirements” in documenting births, but I can’t say what they were in Hawaii in 1961. One must assume at least minimal diligence on the part of the people whose job it is to register births that the information they record is accurate. However, I doubt that a routine home birth to a Hawaiian resident would result in a full-scale police investigation. However, home births were quite unusual in Honolulu in 1961 with a total of only 14 for the year.

    As to the collection of race, the current National Center for Health Statistics standards say that any race the parent chooses is acceptable so long as it is not facetious (and that would exclude “Martian” although I have heard stories back when I worked on a contract with the New Mexico Department of Health that historically there have been a few Martians registered in New Mexico).

    And there are some on the right that are determined not give Obama a pass even to go to the bathroom.

  40. avatar
    Tes January 22, 2009 at 10:30 am #

    Re: “The COLB that Obama presented provides no real proof of where he was born and the witness’s associated with his birth like the doctors, nurse’s, and other witness’s. A BC is required.

    Wrong. Under both Hawaii and Federal law, a certified COLB, attesting to a Hawaiian birth, does provide real proof of place of birth. It’s really that simple.

  41. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy January 22, 2009 at 1:27 pm #

    I think one must make a distinction between “raising a question” and “raising a legitimate question”. A legitimate question must have some evidentiary basis. All of this stuff that has been raised is bogus. As to the birth announcement address, it was the Dunham residence in 1961, see:

    http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/article/20081109/NEWS01/811090361/-1/specialobama08

  42. avatar
    Bigjer February 14, 2009 at 12:19 am #

    Tes: you make a statement then have no proof of the law you speak of…why do you not put down the url where it can be read..????

  43. avatar
    Expelliarmus February 14, 2009 at 1:27 am #

    Here’s a start:
    http://www.capitol.hawaii.gov/hrscurrent/Vol06_Ch0321-0344/HRS0338/HRS_0338-.htm

  44. avatar
    Expelliarmus February 14, 2009 at 8:38 am #

    On the federal end of things:

    A certified birth certificate has a registrar’s raised, embossed, impressed or multicolored seal, registrar’s signature, and the date the certificate was filed with the registrar’s office, which must be within 1 year of your birth.

    Source: http://travel.state.gov/passport/get/first/first_830.html (requirements for first time passport applicants)

  45. avatar
    Lamarr01 November 10, 2009 at 9:29 pm #

    “Natural-born citizen” means born under the jurisdiction of the United States. If Obama was born in Hawaii it doesn’t matter who his parents were, he is a “natural-born citizen”. If he was born outside of the jurisdiction of the United States, namely Kenya, at best he can be a naturalized citizen.

    John McCain was born in a hospital in Colon, Panama and both parents were American citizens. When his mother stepped out of the Panama Canal zone she stepped out of American jurisdiction and Baby McCain became a naturalized citizen and not qualified to become President of the United States.

    This may sound stupid, but it is the law written by lawyers to be misinterpreted by other lawyers.