Einstein was right. For every action, there really is an opposite and equal reaction. The problem is we often don't see the reaction immediately, and wrongly assume the delay means there must not be any reaction. Such is the case with Orly Taitz and other members of the so-called birther movement who are challenging Barack Obama's eligibility to be President. Several challenges have questioned his eligibility because one of his parents was not a U.S. citizen. According to these folks, he is not a natural-born citizen, and therefore cannot be President of the United States.
The good news is they might have a point. The bad news is that if they push it, the Court is likely to find the language requiring a president be a "natural-born" citizen is discriminatory on its face. If so, there would be nothing stopping George Soros from becoming President of the United States.
So far, all of the appeals challenging Barack Obama's citizenship have been dismissed, but what if the Court decided to hear one? Conservatives should remember that the "conservative" Justices have let us down before. We were stunned that the Chief Justice himself agreed that Obamacare was constitutional. Why are we all so sure that we won't again be blindsided on an important issue?
The Nation's top legal scholars have pointed out how the Court could easily find that the Natural-born Citizen Clause violates a naturalized citizen's rights under the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment. Simply put, American citizens must be treated the same. If the government is going to deprive a citizen of life, liberty or property, that person is entitled to the due process of law.
Since the Court has interpreted the right to liberty as a right to exercise constitutionally protected rights, in order to justify taking those rights from only one class of citizens, the government must meet a difficult bar--strict scrutiny. The Government, not the plaintiff must show that the deprivation is needed for a compelling reason. It's a hard test, and rarely do discriminatory laws survive. As it stands now, only "natural-born" American citizens are at liberty to run for president. The liberty of other classes of American citizens are thereby limited.
So, let's say that Orly Taitz and crew are in fact 100% correct, and President Obama is not a natural-born citizen. Then what? Well, he's already in office. The President's lawyers would immediately argue that the requirement is 1) unconstitutional and 2) there is no compelling reason to require it. After all, a non-natural-born citizen has been in office for nearly five years, and the world didn't end. Proving, Obama's supporters will argue, that there is no compelling need to discriminate between the two classes of citizens.
It's a compelling argument, even if you disagree. But do we want to have this fight knowing we could lose? Because if conservatives lose that argument, it wouldn't take much for George Soros to become a naturalized citizen and buy himself a country...our country. Imagine how much he would relish the knowledge that it was a conservative's group challenge that put him in power? Something to think about.
TERMINATING THE “JUST NOT AMERICAN ENOUGH” IDEA: SAYING “HASTA LA VISTA” TO THE NATURAL-BORN-CITIZEN REQUIREMENT OF PRESIDENTIAL ELIGIBILITY by Andrew D. Miller
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