Shelby Talcott on August 21, 2019
President Donald Trump said he is looking “very seriously” at the law of birthright citizenship Wednesday, confirming he is considering issuing an executive order.
A baby born in the United States receives American citizenship through the Fourteenth Amendment, even if the baby is born to undocumented immigrants. Trump has said in the past that he disagrees with birthright citizenship, noting in a 2018 interview with Axios that the law is “ridiculous” and “has to end.” Trump repeated this idea Wednesday, saying the administration is looking at it “very seriously.”
A reporter asked Trump if he plans to issue an executive order on birthright citizenship, and Trump appeared to confirm the idea is being looked at “very seriously.”
“We’re looking at that very seriously, birthright citizenship, where you have a baby on our land — you walk over the border and have a baby,” Trump told reporters. “Congratulations, the baby is now a U.S. citizen. We’re looking at it very, very seriously. I don’t know how you found that out, but that’s very good. We are looking at birthright citizenship very seriously.”
“It’s frankly ridiculous.”
Trump’s 2018 comments received pushback, with former Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan saying he “obviously” can’t get rid of birthright citizenship using an executive order, The New York Times previously reported. Trump also touted this idea during his presidential campaign, but has not yet gone through with it.