No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.
George Washington was covered, Ron! The Framers grandfathered themselves in with the phrase or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution
And yes, I agree that it is the Supreme Court who is soley responsible to interpret the Constitution, and they should officially determine the meaning of natural born citizen and issue a ruling on it. I doubt that they will though. But in any event, it isn't the right of individual candidates to interpret the meaning of the requirement for themselves, either, when they know the circumstances of their birth could be considered disqualifying by a reasonable and common understanding of the requirement. I think that is contempt, just as I think intentionally violating provisions that they don't like, as with Hillary's appointment as Secretary of State, is contempt.
I believe that the definition can be deduced from the distinction being drawn between natural born citizen and citizen in the section, and the Founders concerns that the President should only be someone who did not have dual national allegiances at birth, and by extension, later in life.
I tend to believe that McCain qualifies even though born in Panama since both his parents were U.S. citizens and he was born on a military base. There was no dual citizenship or allegiance issue involved at the time of his birth.
The problem in Obama's situation is that he, whether he was born in Hawaii or Kenya, became a subject of the British Crown through his father, at birth, and subsequently a citizen of Kenya after its independence, along with American citizenship through his mother. Add to that his subsequent Indonesian citizenship after his mother married an Indonesian citizen, a country that did not allow for dual citizenship. So his mother effectively renounced her and her son's American citizenship at that time, which he also would have had to renounce at the age of 21 if he renewed his Indonesian passport to be able to travel to Pakistan in 1981.
Also, his recent involvement in the Kenyan elections on behalf of his uncle, Raila Odinga, and Odinga's claim to have helped Obama win the U.S. election, and his expectations of reward for that from Obama, has certainly raised suspicions that Obama just may have divided national loyalties.
Odinga is a Luo tribesman affiliated with Obama's father when Odinga's communist father was Kenya's first vice president after Kenyan independence and Obama's father was a Harvard-educated economist working in the Jomo Kenyatta government.
Obama campaigned openly for Odinga for president in 2006 when Obama was in Kenya on a U.S. Senate "fact-finding" mission. Kenya's President Mwai Kibaki asked Obama to stop interfering with Kenyan presidential politics. Obama raised an alleged $1 million for Odinga to run for president in Kenya in December 2007, adding to the $1 million raised for Odinga's 2007 presidential campaign by Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi.
When Odinga lost the December 2007 presidential election by approximately 233,000 votes, Odinga called for protests which led his Luo tribesmen to murder approximately 1,000 Kikuyu tribesman, displace another 350,000 Kikuyu tribesmen and destroy 800 churches, while not a single mosque was destroyed. Obama helped negotiate a settlement in which Odinga was appointed co-head-of-state and appointed prime minister to end the violence, even after it became publicly disclosed Odinga signed a letter of understanding with radical Muslims in Kenya in return for their votes.
There are some serious concerns by many people who believe that Obama is not qualified to be the Commander in Chief, given his background.
If, at the time fixed for the beginning of the term of the President, the President elect shall have died, the Vice President elect shall become President. If a President shall not have been chosen before the time fixed for the beginning of his term, or if the President elect shall have failed to qualify, then the Vice President elect shall act as President until a President shall have qualified; and the Congress may by law provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act as President, or the manner in which one who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accordingly until a President or Vice President shall have qualified
Well, there you go. Biden would be President until someone was found who qualified. Thanks Grinch.
Have you been able to find the process for determining eligibility and the procedure for any challenge in the Constitution, that a written challenge must be presented to Congress, and that the Supreme Court can only get involved if that process isn't followed?
[This message has been edited by Denise (12-06-2008 05:10 PM).]