Presidential Candidate John A. Dummett: What Defines “Natural Born Citizen?”

DISCUSSION OF ARTICLE II ELIGIBILITY CLAUSE SCRUBBED

by John Albert Dummett, Jr., Presidential Candidate

"The Law of Nations" by Emerich de Vattel was written in 1758 and believed to be relied upon heavily by the Framers of the U.S. Constitution

(Dec. 1, 2011) — Editor’s Note:  Recently presidential candidate John Dummett contacted The Post & Email regarding a summary he wrote and submitted to Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia, regarding the term “natural born Citizen” contained in Article II, Section 1, clause 5 of the U. S. Constitution.

Under that heading, Wikipedia cites the publications of the Congressional Research Service, authored by “Legislative Attorney” Jack Maskell, which some writers and legal scholars contend are misleading and defective in their arguments as to the meaning and intent of the term “natural born Citizen.”

Dummett is working with the Liberty Legal Foundation to challenge the eligibility of Barack Hussein Obama, who currently holds the office of President of the United States, by means of a lawsuit filed against the Democrat National Committee on October 26, 2011.  Liberty Legal contends that Obama’s place of birth is irrelevant to whether or not he qualifies as a “natural born Citizen,” but rather, that his foreign-national father precludes him from eligibility.

Maskell’s memos and most recent report seem to imply that Obama is eligible by virtue of simply having been born on U.S. soil.  However, there remain questions as to whether or not Obama was born anywhere in the United States, as no city or town has claimed him as its own.

Wikipedia reports that the U.S. Supreme Court “has never directly addressed the question of a specific presidential or vice-presidential candidate’s eligibility as a natural-born citizen” and that Obama was born to a British-citizen father.

Some contend that birth in the United States to two citizen parents is required for a person to be considered “natural born.”  The New Hampshire Secretary of State’s office has disqualified at least two presidential candidates in the recent past for having been born outside of the country.

Below is Dummett’s addition to the “natural born Citizen” article in Wikipedia which he reported was removed “within 25 minutes”:

The Law of Nations written by Emmerich de Vattel, a Swiss-German philosopher of law. In that book, the following definition of a “natural born citizen” appears, in Book I, Chapter 19, § 212, of the English translation of 1797 (p. 110):

§ 212. Citizens and natives.
The citizens are the members of the civil society bound to this society by certain duties and subject to its authority; they equally participate in its advantages. The natives or natural-born citizens are those born in the country of parents who are citizens.

As the society cannot exist and perpetuate itself otherwise than by the children of the citizens, those children naturally follow the condition of their fathers and succeed to all their rights. The French original of 1757 on that same passage read thus; Les naturels ou indigenes sont ceux qui sont nes dans le pays de parents citoyens.

The terms “natives” and “natural born citizens” are obviously English terms used to render the idea conveyed by the French phrase “les naturels, ou indigenes” but both referred to the same category of citizen, one born in the country of parents who were citizens of that country. In the political philosophy of Vattel, the term “naturels” refers to citizens who are such by the Law of Nature that is by the natural circumstances of their birth, which they did not choose. The term “indigenes” is from the Latin indigenes, which like the English, “indigenous” means, “begotten from within” (inde-genes), as in the phrase “the indigenous natives are the peoples who have been born and lived there for generations.” Hence, the meaning of the term “natural born citizen” or “naturels ou indigenes” is the same. Born in the country of two parents who are citizens of that country. Vattel did not invent the notion “natural born citizen”. He was merely applying the Law of Nature to questions of citizenship. In fact, the term first appears in a letter of the future Supreme Court Justice John Jay to George Washington during the Constitutional Convention where the Framers were consulting three copies Vattel’s book to complete their work (according to the testimony of Benjamin Franklin).

===Rulings of The Supreme Court of the United States of America===

Venus Case http://supreme.justia.com/us/12/253/case.html

Shanks vs. Dupont http://supreme.justia.com/us/28/242/case.html

Minor v. Happersett , 88 U.S. 162 (1875)
http://supreme.justia.com/us/88/162/case.html#162

United States v. Wong Kim Ark, 169 U.S. 649 (1898)
http://supreme.justia.com/us/169/649/case.html#649

The Venus, 12 U.S. 8 Cranch 253 253 (1814). The first was decided in A.D. 1814, at the beginning of the republic by men who were intimately associated with the American Revolution. In that year, the following men sat on the Supreme Court. John Marshall, Henry Brockholst Livingston, Bushrod Washington, William
Johnson, Thomas Todd, Gabriel Duvall and Joseph Story. Most of these men participated in the American Revolution, or their fathers did. Joseph Story’s father took part in the original Boston Tea Party. Thomas Todd served six months in the army against the British and participated in five Constitutional Conventions from 1784-1792. During the Revolutionary War Henry Brockholst Livingston was a Lieutenant Colonel in the New York Line and an aide-de-camp to General Benedict
Arnold before the latter is defection to the British. William Johnson’s father, mother and elder brother were revolutionaries who served as political leader, rebel or nurse assistant to the line troops. John Marshall was First Lieutenant of the Culpeper Minutemen of Virginia and then Lieutenant in the Eleventh Virginian Continental Regiment and a friend of General George Washington and debated for ratification of the U.S. Constitution by the Virginian General Assembly. Bushrod
Washington was George Washington’s nephew and heir. Being witnesses and heirs of the Revolution they understood what the Framers of the Constitution had intended.

The Venus case regarded the question whether the cargo of a merchantman named the Venus, belonging to an American citizen and being shipped from British territory to America during the War of 1812 could be seized and taken as a prize by an American privateer.  However, what the case said about citizenship is what matters here.

====What the Venus Case Says on Citizenship====
In the Venus Case, Justice Livingston who wrote the unanimous decision quoted the entire §212nd paragraph from the French edition using his own English. On p. 12 of the ruling,Vattel who, though not very full to this point is more explicit and more satisfactory says, “The citizens are the members of the civil society bound to this society by certain duties and subject to its authority. They equally participate in its advantages. The natives or indigenes are those born in the country of parents who are citizens. Society not being able to subsist and to perpetuate itself but by the children of the citizens, those children naturally follow the condition of their fathers and succeed to all their rights. “The inhabitants” as distinguished from citizens are strangers who are permitted to settle and stay in the country. Bound
by their residence to the society they are subject to the laws of the state while they reside there and they are obliged to defend it.

Shanks v. Dupont, 28 U.S. 3 Pet. 242 242 (1830)
In 16 years later the Supreme Court heard the case regarding the dispute over the inheritance received by two daughters of an American colonist from South Carolina, one of whom went to England and remained a British subject the other of whom remained in South Carolina and became an American citizen. At the beginning of the case Justice Story, who gave the ruling does not cite Vattel per se, but cites the principle of citizenship enshrined in his definition of a “natural
born citizen”. Ann Scott was born in South Carolina before the American revolution and her father adhered to the American cause and remained and was at his death a citizen of South Carolina. There is no dispute that his daughter Ann, at the time of the Revolution and afterwards, remained in South Carolina until December 1782. Whether she was of age during this time does not appear. If she was then her birth and residence might be deemed to constitute her by election a
citizen of South Carolina. If she was not of age then she might well be deemed under the circumstances of this case to hold the citizenship of her father for children born in a country continuing while under age in the family of the father partake of his national character as a citizen of that country. Her citizenship then, being prima facie established, and indeed this is admitted in the pleadings, has it ever been lost or was it lost before the death of her father so that the estate in question was upon the descent cast incapable of vesting in her? Upon the facts stated it appears to us that it was not lost and that she was capable of taking it at the time of the descent cast.

Minor v. Happersett , 88 U.S. 162 (1875)
This case concerned Mrs. Happersett an original suffragette who in virtue of the 14th Amendment attempted to register to vote in the State of Missouri and was refused because she was not a man. The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in that year wrote the majority opinion in which he stated, “The Constitution does not in words say who shall be natural-born citizens. Resort must be had elsewhere to ascertain that”. At common law with the nomenclature of which the framers of the
Constitution were familiar, it was never doubted that all children born in a country of parents who were its citizens became themselves upon their birth citizens also. These were natives or natural-born citizens as distinguished from aliens or foreigners. Some authorities go further and include as citizens children born within the
jurisdiction without reference to the citizenship of their parents.

United States v. Wong Kim Ark, 169 U.S. 649 (1898)
In this case, Wong Kim Ark the son of two resident Chinese aliens claimed U.S. Citizenship and was vindicated by the court on the basis of the 14th Amendment. In this case, the Justice Gray gave the opinion of the court. On p. 168-9 of the record, He cites approvingly the decision in Minor vs. Happersett. At common law, with the nomenclature of which the framers of the Constitution were familiar, it was never doubted that all children born in a country of parents who were its citizens became themselves upon their birth, citizens also. These were natives or natural-born citizens as distinguished from aliens or foreigners. Based on the 14th Amendment however, the majority opinion coined a new definition for “native citizen” as anyone who was born in the U.S.A. under the jurisdiction of the United States. The Court gave a novel interpretation to jurisdiction and thus extended citizenship to all born in the country (excepting those born of ambassadors and foreign armies etc.), but it did not extend the meaning of the term “natural born citizen”. To define a term is to indicate the category or class of things, which it signifies. In this sense, the Supreme Court of the United States has never applied the term “natural born citizen” to any other category than “those born in the country of parents who are citizens thereof”. Hence, every U.S. Citizen must accept this definition or categorical designation, and fulfill his constitutional duties accordingly. No member of Congress, no judge of the Federal Judiciary, no elected or appointed official in Federal or State government has the right to use any other definition and if he does, he is acting unlawfully because it is unconstitutional.

References:
About Emer de Vattel
http://oll.libertyfund.org/index.php?option=com_staticxt&staticfile=show.php%3Fperson=3987&Itemid=28
The law of Nations – Vattel
http://books.google.com/books?id=z8b8rrzRc7AC&dq=Emmerich+de+Vattel+The+Law+of+Nations&printsec=frontcover&source=bn&hl=
it&ei=tdfaSsH1HIuk4Qbb6pn1Bg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=5&ved=0CBcQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=&f=false

Dummett received the following response after his submission was removed:

Hi. The Law of Nations and Minor v. Happersett have been discussed at length in connection with the subject of natural-born citizenship, and the consensus is that these materials are not sufficiently relevant to give them significant treatment in this article. Please carefully read the article’s talk page before trying to add this material back into the article.

Dummett told The Post & Email, “The above posting was rejected in its entirety.  Therefore, if Minor vs. Happersett was the problem the rest could have been included in the entry.”

Sharon Rondeau has operated The Post & Email since April 2010, focusing on the Obama birth certificate investigation and other government corruption news.  She has reported prolifically on constitutional violations within Tennessee’s prison and judicial systems.

11 Responses to "Presidential Candidate John A. Dummett: What Defines “Natural Born Citizen?”"

  1. Kevin J Lankford   Monday, December 5, 2011 at 10:08 AM

    Though ark’s parents were legal residents of this country, nowhere is it claimed they
    became naturalized citizens. In fact it is stated that they still held allegiance to china
    and did retire back to their country of origin.

    One does not inherit citizenship from place of birth alone; that belief originates from
    a total misinterpretation of the fourteenth amendment.

  2. unbontir   Sunday, December 4, 2011 at 1:58 AM

    Why are there not cases in court in all fifty (or was it 57 – oops! My bad; there are 57 Islamic states! Funny that Barry would have muffed that one! You don’t think he could be a Muslim do you?) states????? I think that it is because the Teaparty is being hi-jacked by Republican ‘point men.’ I know that I’ve met quite a few at the Teaparty. Support Orly Taitz. Send her money and the Liberty Legal Foundation and for God’s sake VOTE. Register someone from your Church who is not registered and bring them with you to the polls.

  3. drljr   Saturday, December 3, 2011 at 2:43 PM

    Ark was a citizen under Amendment 14. His parents were actual immigrants who has been given permission to enter and live in the US. Today we would call them immigrants. Having been allowed to enter and live here they placed themselves under the jurisdiction of the US – allegiance – by oath – just like real immigrants do. They were not invaders as illegal aliens are. Thus Wong Kim Ark was a citizen at birth due to soil. The corresponding case of Elk was about someone born in the country who was not “subject to the jurisdiction” since his citizenship was of his tribe. American Indians were declared citizens in 1924 by law under Article 1, Section 8, Paragraph 4.

  4. NUTN2SAY   Friday, December 2, 2011 at 11:05 AM

    Is it possible that it’s the other way around and it’s the media that owns the government? Just something to ponder.

  5. BobSR   Friday, December 2, 2011 at 10:08 AM

    Thanks, Kevin, I almost did not word the native born part that way because, as you said, that is not what the 14th amendment was meant to do……however, that is the way it is being interpreted.

    Are you saying the millions of anchor babies are not U.S. citizens?

  6. Kevin J Lankford   Friday, December 2, 2011 at 8:45 AM

    You are mistaken about all native born are citizens. This stated in the same source from
    which came your quote, “Bouvier’s Law Dictionary”, that all native born may not be
    citizens.

    Unfortunately, there are many people who believe the fourteenth amendment grants
    citizenship to anyone born on American soil and the erroneous decision in the case of
    wong kim ark has perpetuated that error. Obviously they did not study the debates on
    the amendment, or ignored it altogether. If one reads the full clause of the fourteenth
    on citizenship, they would have to conclude its meaning is the exact opposite.

    Sadly the stage has now been set for the coming of foreign presidents whose purpose
    need not be conjecture.

  7. drljr   Friday, December 2, 2011 at 12:29 AM

    Wikipedia has been distorting and misrepresenting the term “natural born citizen” for a while now. It is know that they have been doctoring the information any time someone put the real information on their site. But since they are run by Socialist and Progressive types who support Mr Obama that is not surprising. One can not take what they present as fact since they have a Progressive-Agenda. Snoops has the same problems where Mr Obama is concerned.

    Even the Congressional Research Service distorted what a natural born citizen is in their “reports” by carefully quoting various rulings using ” … ” to obscure their distortions. What is being doing is claiming the dictionary does not define the meaning of words. “Law of Nations” is the common law of the US and defines the various terms. It is even referenced by name in Article 1, Section 8, Paragraph 10 of the US Constitution. This document and information at these two sites are useful

    http://dlaster.com/DOCUMENTS/Why_Barrack_H_Obama_Jr_is_not_President.pdf
    http://www.theobamafile.com/
    http://people.mags.net/tonchen/birthers.htm

    The pdf document has been published at The Post and Email and describes the research I did back in Jan/Feb 2010 as a result of attacks on “Birthers”. It is also part of a Supreme Court Case, Docket number 11-7275, that challenges the Health Care law. Count 6 of the 15 Counts asks the question can a person who is not a natural born citizen sign bills into law. A “Miracle on 34th Street” (1947) is needed to get the Court to hear the case.

    When one examines the definition which can be thought of as a tripod – birth of child in country, mother a citizen of country at birth of child, and father a citizen of country at birth of child – one sees that not only is Mr Obama not eligible and therefore not President, but also that Senator McCain is not a natural born citizen.

    People need to never refer to Mr Obama as President and challenge people, with courtesy, who do pointing out that he was never eligible to run and Hillary Clinton’s campaign was correct in that he should never have been allowed to have his electors placed on the ballot.

    As side note – Mr Obama is not a Black-American or African-American as the definition of the terms have been described to me by actual Black-Americans. Those terms require one to have in one’s ancestry a slave or free Blacks from this country and/or hemisphere. Mr Obama hyphenated ethnicity is “Kenyan-American” or “Kenyan-White-American”.

  8. John Sutherland   Thursday, December 1, 2011 at 3:18 PM

    I think, with the exception of a few news media organizations like Post & Email, the whole media is ‘owned’ by the government, and none of that media will ever support the idea of freedom and constitutional law. It is their job to destroy freedom and the rule of law.

    The watchdogs have joined the enemy.

  9. slcraig   Thursday, December 1, 2011 at 2:32 PM

    Wiki has been rejecting all entries that conflict with their agenda since late 2008 early 2009……….the only way I know to change that is to flood their servers until they relent………..that said, welcome to the struggle and challenge Ballot access in EVERY STATE………in Oklahoma the ‘Petitions for Ballot access’ are filed 12/5 to 7 and challengers have two (2) days, (7th to 9th), to enter their challenges under the Rules,
    https://www.sos.ok.gov/oar/online/viewCode.aspx

    ….don’t miss the opportunity to be heard…………

  10. BobSR   Thursday, December 1, 2011 at 2:16 PM

    The following case needs to be used in The Liberty Legal Foundation Lawsuit also, in my opinion.

    Don’t know if this is in the latest CRS-BS, but if it is, they will torture it to mean what they are paid and directed by Congress for it to mean:

    http://supreme.justia.com/us/377/163/case.html

    From the case of Schneider V. Rush in 1964:

    Quote:

    “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.”

    Here is what the statement means to me;

    Native-born and naturalized citizens are treated alike and have the same constitutional rights…..The only difference drawn by the Constitution is that only a natural born citizen can be president. There are native born citizens who are not natural born, (this is what prevents anchor babies and Obama from being eligible to be president). All native born people are citizens, (14th amendment),…they are native born citizens. However, only those native born citizens who are born of two citizen parents are also natural born citizens. An anchor baby, or Obama with a non-citizen father, or anyone native born but without two citizen parents, is not natural born. Naturalized citizens are not eligible, period.

    It’s simple, and it prevents the absurdity of the latest CRS-BS, bought and paid for by a panicked Congress, from being true. The baby of an Al Qaeda terrorist who steps across the U.S. border and gives birth to another Osama, (or Obama), cannot ever be eligible, no matter how much Middle Eastern money is paid into their campaign of lies and obfuscation. On the other hand, natural born citizens are not rare, that is easily the most common type of citizenship, and there are many millions of natural born citizens to choose from……no need to destroy the Constitution and ultimately America by winding up with an Obama or someone like him.

    There is no absolute guarantee the natural born citizen requirement will always insure the president and commander-in-chief will be someone with sole allegiance to America, but the founders knew it would help, and they were right. Obama provides massive empirical evidence the founders were right.

    The Congressional Research Service reports are done at the request of Congressional leadership. The only conclusion they could possibly come to in this was that, literally, an anchor baby would be eligible to be president. That seems absurd, and it is, but lawyers being paid to come to a certain conclusion is an everyday occurrence, it’s just in this case they were paid to push the U.S. Constitution out of Congress way.

  11. BobSR   Thursday, December 1, 2011 at 12:40 PM

    Just curious, is there another nation an America citizen can go,….say, on vacation, and give birth to a child who would be eligible to be that nations president or whatever they call the top office holder?

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