Drop Anchor Elsewhere
Since Inauguration Day, immigration hawks have been begging the president to make good on his promise to do something about the travesty known as birthright citizenship. Today, he may have finally taken the first step.
The administration is making moves to combat what’s known as “birth tourism,” meaning the act of traveling to the US for the sole purpose of giving birth. Under a new rule, pregnant women applying for US visitor visas will need to prove they have a specific reason for travel other than giving birth on US soil.
What is the new rule?
The new rule applies to visitors seeking B visas, which are issued to non-immigrants.
It allows consular officials to deny a visa to any individual whose “primary purpose” in obtaining such documentation is to give birth there.
According to the State Department:
“The final rule addresses concerns about the attendant risks of this activity to national security and law enforcement, including criminal activity associated with the birth tourism industry, as reflected in federal prosecutions of individuals and entities involved in that industry.”
“The birth tourism industry is also rife with criminal activity, including international criminal schemes,” the policy adds.
It also tightens rules on those wishing to enter the US for medical treatment.
Visa applicants must now prove they have “the means and intent” to pay for their medical expenses, and convince a consular officer that they have arranged for a doctor willing to provide their treatment.
The president’s press secretary, Stephanie Grisham, said in a statement that “the birth tourism industry threatens to overburden valuable hospital resources and is rife with criminal activity”.
“Closing this glaring immigration loophole will combat these endemic abuses and ultimately protect the United States from the national security risks created by this practice,” she added.
Is birth tourism a problem?
In short, yes. The first indicator is the government’s failure to keep accurate records on it, just as they’ve failed to provide concrete numbers on overall illegal immigration. There are no records of how many babies are born to US visitors each year, but various groups have issued estimates.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 10,000 babies were born to a foreign resident in 2017, the latest year that data is available. That number is up from about 7,800 in 2007. Both those numbers are likely very conservative, however, considering the number of women coming across the border for whom we don’t have travel records.
The Center for Immigration Studies, a group that advocates for stricter immigration laws, estimates that about 33,000 children were born to women on temporary tourist visas between the second half of 2016 and the first half of 2017.
Currently, pregnant women can enter the US even up until birth. But the prospective mother’s travel may be restricted if there is reason to believe she intends to remain in the US beyond the time allowed by her visa, or plans for US taxpayers to foot the bill for her childbirth.
While it’s nice to see some action taken by the administration to tackle at least part of this issue, the president promised on the campaign trail to issue an executive order ending birthright citizenship altogether. It’s the hope of immigration hawks that he follow through with this promise.
While such an EO would certainly be met with fierce resistance and brought to court, it would at least give us a chance to litigate an issue that many feel we have good legs to address. In other words, we’ve needed to have this fight for a while, and an EO from the president is the most surefire way of initiating it.
The Left have hijacked the 14th amendment in order to make birthright citizenship the law, or at least fool the public into thinking it’s the law. In reality, the 14th amendment was created to elevate the provisions of the Civil Rights Act of 1866 to constitutional status and authority and insulate it from legal challenge.
The Civil Rights Act included a provision to secure citizenship for former slaves, to nullify the infamous Dred Scott opinion. The provision read, “All persons born in the United States, and not subject to any foreign power, excluding Indians not taxed, are hereby declared to be citizens of the United States…
Here is the actual language of the 14th Amendment:
“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.”
Birthright citizenship only belongs to those who were subject to the jurisdiction of the United States the moment they were born. But children of illegal aliens/non-citizens are not.
Since the parents are not subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, neither are their children. They are, in plain fact, not citizens of the U.S. by birth.
Perhaps now that Turtle McConnell and co. have injected a number of constitutionalists into the judiciary, we have a fighting chance to rectify this perversion of law. But we need the spark to light the fire.
Sign that EO, Mr. President.
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