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> Is McCain a "Natural Born Citizen"?
post Feb 28 2008, 09:29 PM
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Millennium Mark

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Just thought that this would be an interesting discussion, or at least to see what temperature the water is here at ad.gif on the topic.

The NYT published a story discussing whether or not Senator McCain is considered a natural born citizen based on the fact that he was born in the Panama Canal Zone.

Questions for debate:

Is there any validity to the question of McCain being a natural born citizen of the United States?
Do you think Congress should amend the constitution in order to better define "Natural Born Citizen"?
Is that particular qualification archaic in today's United States? In other words, should that requirement be eliminated from our Constitution to be President of the United States?
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post Aug 3 2009, 07:55 AM
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Interesting arguments. I'll admit to having changed sides in the reading of this. It appears that technically McCain would not have been eligible to be president although I don't think he would have had a problem being seated as President if elected. However that brings up a related question.

At the risk of hijacking this thread but hopefully in keeping with the spirit of the argument, if the requirement to become president is to be born in the United States (granting territories of the US the same status as states and rightfully so in my opinion) how do the first 8 Presidents get around the requirement. The first President to be born in the United States was Martin Van Buren. This means that the first 8 were not natural born citizens.

I am not asking this facetiously as I am sure there was some exception as it was logically impossible for anyone to be at least 35 and a natural born citizen until at least 35 years after the creation of the nation I just can't find anything about it, probably because it is late and I am too tired to think straight enough to figure this out.

And wouldn't you know it. I find the answer to my own question immediately after posting. Article found here

This post has been edited by Syfir: Aug 3 2009, 07:58 AM
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Maybe Maybe Not
post Aug 7 2009, 09:31 AM
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QUOTE(Syfir @ Aug 3 2009, 02:55 AM) *
It appears that technically McCain would not have been eligible to be president although I don't think he would have had a problem being seated as President if elected.

I agree on both counts.

If McCain won the popular vote, I think the courts would have done everything possible to avoid hearing a challenge to his citizenship eligibility. But that doesn't resolve the problem for future candidates in the same situation.

And even if they did hear it, I hope they would somehow come to a conclusion allowing the vote to stand. (Because I believe someone in McCain's situation OUGHT to be eligible.) My problem is that in order to do so, they would have to (IMO) hold that the Constitution doesn't really mean what it says.

Constitutional amendment is, therefore, the only satisfactory solution.
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