AN “ISSUE OF NATIONAL IMPORT”
by Sharon Rondeau
The hearing was originally scheduled for October 15 but postponed for two weeks at the request of the plaintiff, whose president, Harold Gielow, is arguing the case pro se.
The case asks Brink to detail any effort he or the agency undertook to establish whether or not Harris is a “natural born Citizen” as required for the presidency in Article II, Section 1, clause 5 of the U.S. Constitution. While that requirement is stated for the president only, the 12th Amendment, ratified in 1804, mandates that any vice-presidential candidate must meet all of the requirements for the presidency.
Harris was born in Oakland, CA on October 20, 1964 to parents who were not U.S. citizens, “immigrants” in a legal sense or permanent residents. Her mother, who passed away in 2009, was present in the U.S. on a student visa which was extended a number of times, according to images which appear to represent genuine U.S. documents released by @KamalaKancel on Twitter over the last six weeks.
While parental citizenship was historically a factor in a child’s citizenship, over the years, the “natural born Citizen” invocation has come to mean to many Americans simply “born in the United States.”
In April 1965, Shyamala Gopalan’s status remained that of “nonimmigrant,” according to images posted by @KamalaKancel. Harris’s father, Donald J. Harris, hailed from Jamaica and was also attending UC Berkeley on a student visa in 1962 when he met Gopalan at an activist event at which he was speaking.
From one of the documents, it appears that in February 1968, well after the birth of the couple’s second child, Gopalan Harris’s presence in the country may have been in jeopardy.
Although his Stanford University emeritus biography states that he eventually naturalized as a U.S. citizen, Donald Harris could not have obtained that status at the time his eldest daughter Kamala was born, as he would not have resided in the United States the requisite five years in order to make application. Additionally, in early 1967 Donald Harris reportedly applied for “permanent resident” status, according to a letter written by Kamala’s mother to the INS in which she requested a change in her visa status.
In his complaint, Gielow cited Virginia law § 24.2-103 detailing the responsibilities of the Virginia State Board of Elections. “The State Board, through the Department of Elections, shall supervise and coordinate the work of the county and city electoral boards and of the registrars to obtain uniformity in their practices and proceedings and legality and purity in all elections. Its supervision shall ensure that major risks to election integrity are (i) identified and assessed and (ii) addressed as necessary to promote election uniformity, legality, and purity. It shall make rules and regulations and issue instructions and provide information consistent with the election laws to the electoral boards and registrars to promote the proper administration of election laws,” the statute begins.
Gielow’s latest filing submitted Wednesday responds to Brink’s claim that “there is no requirement under Title 24.2 of the Virginia Code that requires, or even permits, the Defendants to inspect whether an individual is a ‘natural born citizen’ with, “Yet that is an eligibility requirement under Federal law.”
“While it may be true that the definition of that eligibility requirement may be lost to time, the requirement remains, mandating that we seek its meaning. Plaintiff called the Virginia Board of Elections prior to filing this complaint and asked if an assessment had been done on Mrs. Harris’ eligibility as a natural born citizen. The response was, she was born in Oakland, California. She’s a natural born citizen. The response belies the depth of assessment that the Virginia Board of Elections made on this issue of national import,” Gielow continued.
“Plaintiff seeks a declaratory judgment as to defendant Brink’s failure to uphold Virginia’s election law,” he wrote on page 4 of the brief.
“As to precedent setting, Plaintiff maintains that, had the Defendant fulfilled his obligations under the law, then we would not be at this juncture where the ‘final repository,’ the people, are forced to defend the Constitution and the rule of law,” Gielow told The Post & Email in a statement Wednesday evening.