Franks Not Giving Up on Certificate; Craig v. US and Right to Be President?
Yesterday, the LibertarianRepublican blog broke the following news about Arizona Rep. Trent Franks (R):
Arizona Republican Rep. Trent Franks held a Town Hall meeting yesterday in Kingman. The local paper described it as a “big, boisterous crowd.” Most of the questions focused on Obama’s health care legislation, with nearly unanimous opposition expressed by the attendees. In fact, many were critical of the Congressman for not being vocal enough in Washington on the matter.
Buried in the 16th paragraph of a 25 paragraph article, the Mojave Daily News breaks some major news: Rep. Franks may be the first US Congressman to file a lawsuit challenging Obama’s eligibility as President, based on his non-issuance of a legitimate birth certificate.
From the Mojave Daily News, Aug. 23:
The other main issue dealt with numerous speakers questioning Obama’s birth certificate and why there wasn’t an investigation into whether he is a naturalized citizen. One woman said a newspaper announcement of his birth in Hawaii was not sufficient. Another asked how he could have a passport without a birth certificate.
Franks said there was not enough evidence that Obama is not an American citizen. He did say there was a lot of conflicting evidence of Obama’s citizenship and that he was considering filing a lawsuit, the only congressman to do so. Franks asked why the president did not simply produce a birth certificate.
Rep. Franks represents staunchly conservative northwest Arizona, including Kingman, Lake Havasu, and Bullhead City.
Rep. Franks is a longtime Advisory Board member of the Republican Liberty Caucus. Though, Franks, a stalwart pro-lifer and former state director of the American Family Association, is generally considered to be more of a social conservative.
Editor’s Note – Libertarian Republican is the very first news source – news site or blog – to break this story on a national level. We are thankful to our anonymous source for the tip.
This article picked up by the news service Propeller.com
This article picked up by the news service Newsvine.com
This article posted at Digg
This article re-posted in full at GiveUsLiberty blog
OTHER MEDIA NOW COVERING THIS STORY
World Net Daily now has this story as its headline piece this morning.
“It should not be too much to ask for the leader of the free world to allay the concerns of a large number of the people he represents by producing his long-form birth certificate…” — Bethany Haley, Spokesperson, Congressman Trent Franks, (R-AZ)
Libertarian Republican was the very first political blog to break this story early yesterday, thanks to an anonymous tipster. As predicted it has become a major story in both the mainstream and Right political blogosphere. World Net Daily, the largest of all Right news sites, headlined the story very early this morning. HotAir.com is running it. The Washington Independent, Washington Monthly, Gawker, Alan Colmes Liberaland, Think Progress, and Congress Matters are all running articles on it, according to Memeorandum.
Politico.com is running not one, but two stories on the issue. The second one, just posted minutes ago, has an interesting “clarification,” by Rep. Frank’s media spokesperson Bethany Haley. The article is titled, “Franks – Ridiculous O won’t produce longform certificate.” Ms. Haley emails Politico’s Glenn Thrush to inform him that the Congressman does not have any plans to file a lawsuit, and that after research a couple months ago, he decided against it. She says that the Mojave Desert newspaper originally got the story somewhat wrong. Then she adds this interesting caveat:
That being said — he also believes it’s ridiculous for the President of the United States, who ran on a platform of transparency and accountability, to dismiss so glibly the concerns of literally millions of Americans, and allow such a ridiculous debate to continue when it could so easily be settled once and for all. It should not be too much to ask for the leader of the free world to allay the concerns of a large number of the people he represents by producing his long-form birth certificate, which is the definitive, inarguable way that he can put people’s concerns about his national identity to rest for good.
David Wiegel of the Washington Independent — the same guy who rather glumly made reference to my bodaciously kewl site not too long ago — unsurprisingly questions the motives of Rep. Frank (embedded in his article is a reference to the CitizenWells site). And, speaking of, CitizenWells had the following commentary written at one of his postings of this story:
Today we received this comment from travelbugs:
“I just got off the phone with Congressman Franks office. He said that he did not say he would pursue a lawsuit, but rather that he would pursue looking into this. I also explained that it is much more than the long form birth certificate. I further stated that he had to simultaneously ask for the college records and passport records to be opened up to fully understand the depth of this. The staffer said they have been flooded by calls today about the birth issue and he took my message down, in great detail, and promised to pass it along to the Congressman. Everyone needs to call and relay this same information. He can get a fake birth certificate, but he cannot forge the passport and college records as well. These elements are critical to bringing about the truth!”
Things are obviously not over for Rep. Frank, as WorldNetDaily is also reporting that Ms. Haley has confirmed that he will become a cosponsor to HR1503, Rep. Bill Posey’s (R-FL) presidential eligibility bill.
Steven Craig recently brought a law suit – Craig v. United States – in the Western District of Oklahoma where he argued that he was deprived of a Constitutional right to be determined a “natural born citizen”. His argument was based on the fact that Congress has specifically determined who is a naturalized citizen but as to natural born citizens there is no concrete answer.
Mr. Craig was essentially trying to force the courts into making a judicial definition of “natural born citizen” by asserting that without such a definition Mr. Craig is deprived of his legacy status as a natural born citizen.
This was a novel attempt, but as I have recently told Mr. Craig, natural born citizen status is not a protected civil right. In fact, it’s not a right at all. And as such he could not expect to prevail as the court would not have subject matter jurisdiction. Without a deprivation of rights, the court has no claim to adjudicate. Furthermore, I explained to Mr. Craig that he does not meet the federal standing requirements in that his alleged injury is no different than millions of other citizens.
Mr. Craig’s suit was dismissed by the District Court. In the Court of Appeals (10th Circuit), the dismissal was upheld. The court rejected the case on the basis that they had no subject matter jurisdiction since there was no injury in fact as none of Mr. Craig’s rights were harmed. It was also held that Mr. Craig did not have standing. As stated above, this came as no surprise to me.
However, a rather incredible turn of events has taken place and Mr. Craig’s law suit has actually advanced the cause of POTUS eligibility truth by accident. Or, perhaps Mr. Craig knew he was backing the courts into a corner just by bringing this suit because as it turns out, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals has just handed the movement its greatest judicial victory thus far. Mr. Craig deserves a round of applause for his novel attempt which appears to have forced a very important judicial admission from the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals.
RECAP OF RECENT MEDIA BIAS
Let’s stop here for a second and consider all of the recent media ridicule and propaganda which has attempted to paint the natural born citizen POTUS eligibility issue in discriminatory tones. Obama pundits argue that all “native born” citizens have the right to be President and that we shouldn’t discriminate based on parental heritage as that would deprive civil rights.
The problem with their analysis is that there is no “right” to be president. The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals agrees.
And that’s what I’ve been saying all along. POTUS eligibility being limited to natural born citizens is not a an issue of civil rights, it’s an issue of national security.
The Obama eligibility pundits demand that all citizens born on US soil – despite whether they be born of alien parentage – have a Constitutional right to be President in that it would be a deprivation of their civil rights if natural born citizen status is not granted to them.
This is the mantra of those who support that Obama is a natural born citizen even though Obama admits he was a British citizen at birth via his father who was never a US citizen.
But the status of “natural born citizen” is not a right owed to native born US citizens. In fact, it’s not a right owed to any US citizen because nbc status is simply not in any way, shape or form a “right” at all.
QUESTION: If natural born citizen status is not a right then what is it?
ANSWER: It’s a description of a certain path to citizenship.
There are various paths to citizenship:
- naturalized citizen
- 14th Amendment native born citizen
- statutory citizen
- natural born citizen
All of the above citizens have exactly the same rights.
This is undeniable and SCOTUS has confirmed it on numerous occasions. A naturalized US citizen has every damn right that natural born citizens have bar none.
THE 10th CIRCUIT COURT OF APPEALS REVIEW OF CRAIG v. US
The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals described Mr. Craig’s claim as follows:
Though it is somewhat difficult to distill Mr. Craig’s arguments on appeal, he continues to assert that due to the lack of a legal definition for natural-born citizen, the existence of citizens who are naturally born, as understood by the Constitution’s Framers, is no longer acknowledged. According to Mr. Craig, this has resulted in the “involuntary expatriation” of those whom he believes fall into this category of citizens… He further argues that the district court should legally define “natural born Citizen” in an effort to prevent the deprivation of citizenship legacy, as contemplated by the Constitution, and the diminution of his and purported class members’ “rights and intrinsic property as . . . multi-generational citizen[s].”
10th CIRCUIT COURT OF APPEALS HOLDING:
The district court correctly determined that it lacked subject-matter
jurisdiction over this case…
Even liberally construed, Mr. Craig’s claim is not grounded in a constitutional or federal question: there is no such “right” (a) to have courts adopt his proffered legal definition, (b) to be classified as a citizen pursuant to that definition, or (c) to obtain certification of the status he attempts to define.
That’s an incredible holding. It simply crushed the mantra which cries that 14th Amendment native born citizens have a legal right to be deemed natural born citizens. According to this holding, not even a native born US citizen like Mr. Craig – whose parents were both US citizens at the time of his birth – has a right to obtain certification of natural born citizen status.
Furthermore, the court unequivocally stated that the claim was not grounded in a Constitutional or federal question.
The Court quotes the following case law to support its position:
We start from the premise that the rights of citizenship of the native born and of the naturalized person are of the same dignity and are coextensive. The only difference drawn by the Constitution is that only the “natural born” citizen is eligible to be President. Art. II, § 1…
Schneider v. Rusk, 377 U.S. 163, 165-66 (1964) (quoting Osborn v. Bank of U.S., 22 U.S. (9 Wheat.) 738, 827 (1824))…
That quote from Schneider v. Rusk is very important. It states that the rights of all citizens, naturalized or native born are equal. It carefully uses those two terms in discussing equal rights. But the Supreme Court used a different term than “native born” in the next sentence as to Presidential eligibility where they indicate that the only thing which separates natural born citizens from all naturalized citizens and those native born citizens who do not rise to nbc status is the ability to be President.
The 10 Circuit Court of Appeals holding makes it clear that there is no right to be deemed a natural born citizen. Mr. Craig does not have that right and his law suit to protect that right was correctly dismissed. If Mr. Craig, a native born US citizen born of citizen parents has no right to be deemed a natural born citizen, then no other native born US citizen has that right, not even Obama.
QUESTION: Why is it important that there is no right to be deemed a natural born citizen?
ANSWER: Because you can’t be President unless you are a natural born citizen but no court has ever answered the question of who can be President.
QUESTION: Then how can we determine who meets the natural born citizen requirement of Article 2, Section 1, Clause 5 ?
ANSWER: By Constitutional amendment or federal judicial review of the issue with the Courts examining all relevant evidence.
That hasn’t happened yet.
All the media reports and propaganda stating all the various liberal definitions concerning natural born citizen status are bogus. Both SCOTUS in Schneider v. Rusk and the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Craig v US have unequivocally stated that all citizens have equal rights. Therefore, natural born citizen status and the legal eligibility to be POTUS is not a protected right available to any citizen.
If you are President and there exists a legitimate challenge to your eligibility then the courts should be called upon to adjudicate the issue because the phrase “natural born citizen” is specifically written into the Constitution. Under our Constitution, the voters do not decide the meaning of this provision. The media does not have that power either. Only the courts or the Congress through an amendment can decide the issue.
If a President’s eligibility is in doubt and that doubt has a fair grounding in the legal and foundational history of the nation, then the federal courts should hear the issue.
The fact that the courts have refused to hear every single case on the merits tells you that the Constitution is under attack. If Obama retains his position as POTUS without a judicial determination then he will have set a precedent for future generations to be governed by the sons of foreign leaders who hate America.
How do you feel about Kim Jong Il fathering a child with an American woman who gives birth on US soil? Should that child be eligible to be Commander In Chief of the US Armed Forces? The same goes for children of Osama Bin Laden.
If that was intended by the Framers of the Constitution, then this is the twilight zone and I need to go home now.
As was stated in both SCOTUS cases, Minor v. Happersett, and Wong Kim Ark, the Constitution does not define “natural born citizen” so we must look outside the Constitution for that definition. Obama supporters have a certain body of law and commentary they point to in support of their position that he is a natural born citizen and therefore eligible to be POTUS.
On the other hand, people like myself have a body of law and various historical commentaries which make a very strong case that Obama is not eligible to be POTUS. I will be publishing some incredible research on this issue by a group who has been forwarding me some rather incredible historical finds on this issue.
The simple truth is that the most important safeguard of our national security – the President of the United States – is only eligible to that office if the Constitutional requirements are met. But in our entire history of a nation, this issue has never been judicially determined.
SCOTUS in Minor and Wong Kim Ark – both decided years after the adoption of the 14th Amendment – tell us the definition of natural born citizen is not written into the Constitution. Any attempt to simplify the issue by stating that all 14th Amendment native born citizens are also POTUS eligible on that basis is a fraudulent statement.
The issue is in serious need of litigation. It’s in the best interest of the nation to have the issue settled because this is no joke. If Obama’s eligibility is not heard on the merits in our judicial system, then the answer to who is a natural born citizen will be settled by virtue of Obama being President. [emphases original]
Mr. Donofrio makes some absolutely excellent, fundamental points in his posting, and that is the part with which I agree. Since it is likely that the eligibility clause in the American Constitution has never been exhaustively litigated (certainly not to the point of providing a wholistically complete definition regarding natural born citizenship), this saga has always been a learning process for all involved to figure out exactly how to approach this issue either via the Legislative or the Judiciary.
Again, Mr. Donofrio makes a solid impression on me RE: presidential eligibility as a national security issue. I think I’ve always known that national security is the reason why the office requires “that much more” of the person with enough ambition to pursue it; I simply haven’t known best how to articulate the concept.
I disagree with Mr. Donofrio’s final conclusion that the mere fact of Mr. Obama being President somehow sets binding precendent on breaking the law; nothing could be further from the truth. After all, if this were the case, then Mr. Donofrio is in trouble with President Chester Arthur, in that he is alleged to not have been a natural born citizen. Does that mean that the natural born aspects of Article 2, Section 1, Clause 5 are now irrelevant? Of course not.
Therefore, we as Americans need to realize what the Constitution says versus what it doesn’t say. Thanks a lot for the seed of inspiration, Leo.
Natural born citizenship does not grant anyone the right to do anything; rather, it is a stipulation as to the preferred citizenship pathway to becoming President.
See the following links regarding the eligibility saga:
- Obama’s Presidential Eligibility: What You Need to Know
- Obama’s Sealed Background Documentation
- Newsmax.com: Obama Birth Certificate Not Released
- What’s the Difference Between a Birth Certification Versus a Birth Certificate?
- Keyes v. Lingle: Forensic Examiner and IT Expert Disprove Certification of Live Birth
- Obama Citizenship Facts
- The State Department and Sen. Patrick Leahy’s (D-VT) Natural Born Citizen Resolution (April 10, 2008)
- Citizen Grand Jury Updates and Eligibility Lawsuit Listing