Bob Unruh joined WND in 2006 after nearly three decades with the Associated Press, as well as several Upper Midwest newspapers, where he covered everything from legislative battles and sports to tornadoes and homicidal survivalists. He is also a photographer whose scenic work has been used commercially.More ↓Less ↑
Perhaps it’s a good thing that the U.S. Senate didn’t take up a resolution on Barack Obama’s status as a “natural born Citizen” in 2008 – as members did for GOP candidate Sen. John McCain while both were seeking the U.S. presidency.
The Democrat might not have qualified under the requirements the Senate, including Obama, a co-sponsor and then-senator, put in the resolution, including the demand that the candidate have “American citizen” parents.
The candidates’ circumstances were not the same: Questions were raised over McCain’s eligibility under the Constitution’s demand that a president be a “natural born Citizen,” because he was born to American citizen military parents while they are on assignment overseas.
The specific allegations have been placed online by YouTube participate PPSimmons, who previously has analyzed and provided commentary on the issues of eligibility to the presidency:
Questions over Obama’s have arisen because of his almost total concealment of documentation from his life – including his passport records, kindergarten records, Punahou school records, Occidental College records, Columbia University records, Columbia thesis, Harvard Law School records, Harvard Law Review articles, University of Chicago articles, Illinois State Bar Association records, Illinois State Senate records and schedules, medical records, Obama/Dunham marriage license, Obama/Dunham divorce documents, Soetoro/Dunham marriage license and adoption records.
Specifically, because of the lack of documentation, it was suspected he might not have been born in Hawaii, or might have another circumstance that would preclude his eligibility under the Constitution’s “natural born Citizen” requirement, such as a loss of that status by taking Indonesia citizenship during his childhood, or relinquishing that status by using a foreign passport during his college years. Or that he didn’t qualify because of a dual citizenship inherited from a foreign national father.
He only released a copy of his “Certificate of Live Birth” from Hawaii this week because, he said, those questions were distracting him from the nation’s problems, such as massive spending, job instability and others.
That document is this:
Image released by the White House April 27, 2011
But plaintiffs and lawyers who earlier brought a lawsuit against Obama alleging he is ineligible to be president, say he failed to meet the “natural born Citizen” requirement because his father is a foreign national, and the understanding of “natural born Citizen” at the time the Constitution was written was a citizen offspring of citizen parents.
The statement includes two references to “Americans” as parents or “American citizens” as parents.
“Whereas there is no evidence of the intention of the Framers or any Congress to limit the constitutional rights of children born to Americans serving in the military nor to prevent those children from serving as their country’s President,” it states.
First reference to “American” parents in Obama’s resolution about McCain
The second reference is to “American citizens” as parents.
Second reference to “American citizens” as parents in Obama’s resolution about McCain
The text of the resolution is:
S. RES. 511
Recognizing that John Sidney McCain, III, is a natural born citizen.
IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
April 10, 2008
Mrs. MCCASKILL (for herself, Mr. LEAHY, Mr. OBAMA, Mr. COBURN, Mrs. CLINTON, and Mr. WEBB) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary
April 24, 2008
Reported by Mr. LEAHY, without amendment
April 30, 2008
Considered and agreed to
Recognizing that John Sidney McCain, III, is a natural born citizen.
Whereas the Constitution of the United States requires that, to be eligible for the Office of the President, a person must be a `natural born Citizen’ of the United States;
Whereas the term `natural born Citizen’, as that term appears in Article II, Section 1, is not defined in the Constitution of the United States;
Whereas there is no evidence of the intention of the Framers or any Congress to limit the constitutional rights of children born to Americans serving in the military nor to prevent those children from serving as their country’s President;
Whereas such limitations would be inconsistent with the purpose and intent of the `natural born Citizen’ clause of the Constitution of the United States, as evidenced by the First Congress’s own statute defining the term `natural born Citizen’;
Whereas the well-being of all citizens of the United States is preserved and enhanced by the men and women who are assigned to serve our country outside of our national borders;
Whereas previous presidential candidates were born outside of the United States of America and were understood to be eligible to be President; and
Whereas John Sidney McCain, III, was born to American citizens on an American military base in the Panama Canal Zone in 1936: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That John Sidney McCain, III, is a `natural born Citizen’ under Article II, Section 1, of the Constitution of the United States.
The statement was sponsored by Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., who was joined by Sens. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y.; Thomas Coburn, R-Okla.; Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.; Jim Webb, D-Va.; and Obama.
His statement cited The New York Times for “publishing a report calling into question the legality of McCain’s presidential run based on whether he is a ‘natural born Citizen,’ as required by the Constitution.”
“This bipartisan resolution erases any doubt that Senator McCain is eligible to run for president,” said Leahy. “The Senate was right to quickly pass this measure, and we can now put to rest any question of his eligibility.”
“There’s no question in my mind that Senator McCain is eligible to become president, and I’m proud that my colleagues in the Senate came together on this resolution to help quickly put this debate to rest,” McCaskill stated at the time.
Leahy’s statement was specific on the issue of U.S. parents.
“Because he was born to American citizens, there is no doubt in my mind that Senator McCain is a natural born citizen. I recently asked Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff, a former federal judge, if he had any doubts in his mind. He did not,” he said then.
The video cited Vattel’s The Law of Nations, writings from which the U.S. Founders drew both ideas and definitions. There, “natural-born citizens, are those born in the country, of parents who are citizens,” according to Book 1, Chapter 19, Paragraph 212.