Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Obama Citizenship and the Constitution

John R. Houk
© December 3, 2008

Blogger profile “Ted” has been posting numerous Comments on the Blogger version of promoting an examination of President Elect Obama’s authenticity of citizenship. Normally I would be angry with “Ted” because all his Comments are completely off topic from the original post.

And yet the whole Constitutional issue of BHO’s citizenship is a fascinating constitutional dilemma that could twist and tangle constitutional law in America if a line of reasoning is pursued according to the wishes of the persistent anti-Obama Conservatives.

There are more of Ted’s Comments but here is the last one:

To say that American main stream media has failed to report what is "the story of the century" is an UNDERSTATEMENT. Their cover-up is treasonous. In the event the Supreme Court ultimately determines that Obama cannot be President -- not qualifying as an Article II "natural born citizen" -- the msm will be the blame for any civil unrest by failing to prepare the American public.

Watch this --

I have tried to respond to Ted on each of his Comments with a slight rebuke added to the mix for not Commenting on topic; however this time around I found my response to be long enough that I should post the Comment itself. And so I have done so below.


Ted it is only because I find the citizenship issue of Barack Hussein Obama to be fascinating that I do not delete these numerous off post comments.

In the spirit of the dialog you are attempting at Slant Right I have to disagree with the YouTube video you linked to.

The Constitutional issue of the definition of a "natural born citizen" is way more muddied than it is clear.

The easiest determination is a birth on American soil (hello illegal immigrants).

After that clarity begins to fog up because the Constitution itself does not define WHAT a "natural born" citizen is. Congress has via statute has been updating that definition for decades, in particular what constitutes a "natural born citizen" born outside of American soil.

I believe the latest statute allows for one natural born citizen - the male - to be a parent when the child is born outside the USA.

Is the statute Constitutional in light of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which is often now linked to the 14th Amendment to equalize the legal standing of females to males.

Although the original intent of the 1964 Civil Rights Act was race equality and employment rights; women have successfully adjudicated cases for equal rights. This is why critics have effectively staved off passage of the Equal Rights Amendment which is a mere three States short of passage.

Thus SCOTUS could either rule in favor of Obama citing equal rights of a woman to a man thus enabling a female natural born citizen to also be a parent to cause a birth outside the USA to be a natural born American; OR SCOTUS could merely instruct Congress to clarify the natural born citizen statutes thus far. That would mean a Dem Party dominated Congress would ensure Barack Hussein Obama's natural born status.

On the other hand it would reveal BHO as less than an honest person if indeed he was born in Kenya (as he denies). The voters would know they were duped and would have to consider what other lies BHO may have told.

Apart from Ted’s efforts David Horowitz who I look up to as one of the heroes of exposing the global Islamic agenda, is actually lambasting anti-Obama Conservatives for trying to bring Obama’s citizenship issue front and center. I cross posted his take along with my Comment HERE.

I pointed out that I agreed to two of three of Horowitz’s objections for raising an issue (Go to the post to see the two). The Horowitz objection dealt with constitutional law versus the will of the people via a democratically ran election that made Obama President Elect.

In short Horowitz implied the U.S. Constitution should be rendered irrelevant when the will of the people have spoken and elected Barack Hussein Obama as President of the United States of America.

As I intimated to Ted even if SCOTUS actually goes through with a hearing after a review (I doubt that will happen), SCOTUS should examine the issue and send clarification to Congress in which decisions are made. Obviously that will slow down the American Electoral process because if Congress does not quickly SCOTUS may suspend the January 20, 2009 Inauguration until Congress clarifies what a Natural Born citizen with clear specificity.

This is where the Constitutional crisis emerges for such a situation or ruling has never been enforced in American history. Nonetheless if SCOTUS does its job of interpreting rather than legislating and Congress does its job of legislating then the Constitutional crisis will come and go with laws becoming specific and SCOTUS keeping the Constitution the best rule of law piece of paper on earth.

And since the Dems currently have a majority in Congress and in January an even greater majority in Congress, we should know that the statute would be written to favor BHO’s natural born citizen status and the eventual Inauguration of Barack Hussein Obama as President of the United States.

A more likely scenario though is that SCOTUS will announce December 5th they won’t even hear the case leaving everything in limbo and still Barack Hussein Obama Inaugurated as President of the United States of America.

Just for clarity’s sake I would like to say again that I am not a BHO fan, I voted McCain/Palin. Now is the time to get over the GOP loss and build for future elections and praying that President Elect Obama makes decisions that are good for America regardless of ideology.

But we have to keep it CONSTITUTIONAL and NOT extra-Constitutional as David Horowitz implies.

Horowitz has been taking some Conservative heat for his position and as of this post has written a December 2nd and a December 3rd defense of his stand.

JRH 12/3/08

Rule of Law vs. Rule of the Demos

David Horowitz
Posted at 3:18 PM on 12/2/2008
David’s Blog

Among the many attacks on my previous blog both abusive and not, one common theme seems to stand out. This is the claim that I have slighted the Rule of Law in favor of some misguided principle of democracy, which is not a conservative idea -- or so my critics would argue. My error is to have elevated the principle of majority rule over the rule of law.

I believe the answer to these critics is already in my original blog. The Founders lodged authority for the institution of government not in abstract principle but in the will of the people. True they put certain restraints on that will to slow it down. But ultimately, the will of the people is sovereign. That is the Constitutional principle of our system of government.

The people voted for Obama. Assuming for the sake of the argument that Obama is not a natural citizen of the United States, the question is: what are the consequences of having 9 appointed justices -- or more likely 5 of 9 justices -- tell 64 million voters that their votes don't count? Would our constitutional democracy survive such a conflict, and then would our Constitution? Ultimately, the answer to these questions lies with the people. They are the ultimate authority not some abstract Rule of Law because the Rule of Law is in any case ajudicated and enforced by (highly political) men and women, while the people in its majority have it in their power to destroy the Rule of Law if they so will. The Constitution itself recognizes this fact by giving the people the right to amend it by a two-thirds vote. This is itself a recognition that the Rule of Law is an institution of men and women.

Granted the presidential election wasn't won by a two-thirds vote. But would a decision by 9 Supreme Court justices as to whether a birth certificate was authentic be more trustworthy than the decision by 64 million voters that Obama should be president? The presidential election was a very extensive test of the people's will. So much so that I wouldn't be surprised that if Obama was found not to be a citizen and the question of amending that provision in the Constitution was then put to a vote, the amendment would have a good chance of passing.

But all of this is quite legalistic and beside the point My real question is why would anyone who cares about this country want to risk a civil conflict of this magnitude in the midst of two shooting wars with terrorist adversaries and a very hostile intenational environment. Particularly when the president-elect has appointed a national security team that a McCain Administration could live with?

"Here is an example of the general confusion of my critics:

Comment submitted by RussP in regards to blog entry: Rule of Law vs. Rule of the Demos

If Obama was born in Kenya and ran anyway, *he* is the one who perpetrated a fraud on the American people, and *he* needs to be held accountable."

Exactly who is going to hold him accountable? Not the 64 million people who voted for him. So who? 9 or 5 appointed justices? How is what they rule going to carry weight with the 64 million?

Here's another example:

"I'm wondering why people are upset with those who are questioning Obama's natural born citizen status. The responsibility for this potential constitutional crisis lies squarely on Obama."

Yes, but the consequences for making this a national issue will fall squarely on us.

At bottom, the problem with all these comments is that the people who make them haven't accepted the fact that we lost the election. We lost the election. Get used to it. That's the necessary condition for thinking clearly about the next step.

One More Try

David Horowitz
Posted at 7:50 AM on 12/3/2008
David’s Blog

Without exception my critics seem to think there is a Law that is objective and just and beyond the reach of human influence and judgment. Would that were the case. But it is not. And both conservatives and liberals understand this when the shoe is pinching their foot and not the other guy's. What conservative thinks there is a right to privacy in the Constitution that justifies abortion? And how many liberals think the 5 justices who gave the 2000 election to George Bush were not deciding the Florida case for political reasons?

If the facts in the Obama case were not in dispute it would be a different matter. No one doubts that Arnold Schwarzenegger was born in Austria to Austrian parents and therefore is ineligible to be President under our Constitutional rules. But in Obama's case the facts are in dispute and Obama -- who is now president-elect -- will dispute them. And that means that 9 unelected officials, all of whom have partisan allegiances, will decide those facts and therefore decide whether he is to be president. So the real question is what would be the political consequences of having 9 justices -- and more likely 5 justices -- overturn the will of 64 million voters.

Consider the bitterness, the pathological hatred of Bush, the sabotage of America's war effort by Democrats who believed that his election was illegitimate. Consider the 2 month delay this caused in the transition to the new administration and how that affected our inability to prevent 9/11 (the comprehensive counter-terrorism plan commissioned by Bush arrived on his desk on 9/10). We are fighting wars on two fronts. The attack on Mumbai is a reminder that the same could happen here at any moment. Do we have the luxury of a fratricidal conflict within our borders?

Before my critics jump in and lecture me again about the Rule of Law, consider that you might be wrong about the facts of Obama's birth or at least that the 64 million people who voted for him will not be persuaded by 5 Supreme Court justices that you are right. Then think again about the political consequences of that..

Obama Citizenship and the Constitution
John R. Houk
© December 3, 2008

David’s Blog
Copyright©2007 [sic]


Ted said...

Your argument fails for two reasons:

(1) Only an Amendment can "update" [your term] the requirment for, or new meaning to what the framers meant by, "natural born citizen", not simply an act of Congress.

(2) "Natural born citizen" is not citizenship created by statute; it is a particular kind of citizenship, "natural born citizenship" recognized under the constitution.

Case closed.

Ted said...

And by the way, "the latest statute" to which you refer which you say "allows for one natural born be a parent when the child is born outside the USA" completely misses the mark for three more reasons:

(1) The statute to which you refer does not apply to "natural born citizen"; it apples to "citizen". See Const. Art II for the distinction.

(2) It is not required that a "natural born citizen" have as his parents two, one, or any, "natural born citizens". All that is required is that his parents both be "citizens" at the time of the child's birth.

(3) No "natural born citizen" can be born outside the USA -- even if both parents are "citizens" or "natural born citizens" themselves.

Ted said...

Since you seem to be asserting arguments which Team Obama would make, I'm gonna refer this over to Leo Donofrio's blogsite(s) so he can see what opposing 'legal' points he can anticipate.

Ted said...

In sum, this is NOT rocket science. Since the Constitution’s Article II requires our President to be a “natural born citizen” meaning both parents were US “citizens” when the child was born (albeit not necessarily “natural born citizens”), there’s NO WAY Obama can be President — regardless of being born in Kenya OR Hawaii. Obama’s dad was NOT an American citizen. He was a citizen of the UK (ruling Kenya at the time). Again, case closed.

Theway2k said...

LOL - Ted you are on fire! Calm down my friend. I am actually interested how the SCOTUS thing plays out.

I am curious though, where specifically (NOT general inference) does Article 2 of the U.S. Constitution spell out that both parents must be a Natural Born Citizen in order for the their offspring to also be a Natural Born Citizen?

Now Ted don't get met. Get glad and educate me with specifics.


Ted said...

Article II does NOT say both parents must be "Natural Born Citizens". They only have to be "citizens".

Anonymous said...

here's the scoop...David said the will of the people is soverign. wrong. And he said a constitutional democracy..wrong.
The founding fathers specifically referred to a democracy as a mobocracy..that is why they did not give us a democracy, but a constitutional Republic. In fact the founding fathers referred to a democracy as one of the greatest forms of evil. In fact, Hitler said a democracy is usuallly followed by a dictatorship. Just google quotes of the founding fathers. Noah Webster, Fisher Ames, John Witherspoon. George Washington said its impossible to rightly govern without God and the Bible. John Adams said the constitution is for a moral and upright people.

I've been researching for two days...natural born citizen. Whew.It just should not be so complicated....but it is.

Obama born in Kenya to a British father...he was British when he was born. When he lived in Indonesia, he had Indonesian citizenship listed in his school records, religion=Muslim. He did not apply to be a naturized citizen upon returning to Hawaii.

Theway2k said...

Good point Anonymous! The Founding Fathers were adverse to the pure Athenian style Democracy; ergo they established a Federalist Representative Republic with checks and balances to prevent mobocracy.

The Obama supporters claim the Indonesian SCHOOL records list him as a citizen and Muslim; however there are no corroborating Indonesian govt records.

The controversial Certificate of Live Birth from Hawaii indeed shows that his mother wanted American lineage. Also Obama's teen years were spent in Hawaii which recognized (maybe thanks to the current Dem Governor) as a native born Hawaiian citizen.

Nonetheless a successful Court challenged to force the revealing of sealed records could prove all the above assertions wrong. Then the Constitutional tug-o-war begins.

On the other hand (as I have stated before) I doubt that SCOTUS will touch this Constitutional can of worms. SCOTUS is too divided ideologically with one or two centrists voting with the Left or the Right. I suspect the SCOTUS consensus on Dec. 5 will be to not even hear the current Law Suit.

Simple and life goes on until a different Law Suit catches a SCOTUS docket.