President Donald Trump, returning to one of his 2016 campaign themes, said in an interview that he plans to use an executive order to end citizenship rights for babies born in the U.S. to parents who aren’t citizens.
“We’re the only country in the world where a person comes in and has a baby, and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States … with all of those benefits,” Trump said in the interview, part of a new show Axios is debuting on HBO. “It’s ridiculous. It’s ridiculous. And it has to end.”
“It’s in the process. It’ll happen … with an executive order,” the president said.
It is unclear if birthright citizenship can be ended through an executive order and without a change to the Constitution.
The Constitution’s 14th Amendment, ratified in 1868, says: “All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.”
Trump called for ending birthright citizenship as part of his hard-line immigration platform during his presidential campaign.
His return to that issue comes in the run-up to the midterm elections, at a time when the president has hammered hard on the topic of immigration, including referring to a Central American migrant caravan slowly making its way north through Mexico an invasion.