Georgia Legislators Say No to Birthright Citizenship
Congress reconvenes this week and immigration will no doubt be in the hot topic.
As November elections approach, the nation wide question being asked is: Who is and what makes a citizen?
Georgia lawmakers have put themselves in the middle of the debate. With legislation that would end automatically giving U.S. citizenship to children born in this country, whether to legal citizen parents or not, Georgia is looking at a reversal of the 14th Amendment.
“There is some very, very serious concern about this issue,” said Republican U.S. Rep. Phil Gingrey of Marietta, who supports the legislation. Believing immigration to be a hot-bottom issue he said politicians need to take a stand or “they couldn’t be elected dog catcher.”
Georgia has become the #7 in the country for undocumented immigrants. According to the Pew Hispanic Center, 475,000 undocumented immigrants reside in the state.
“This is a classic Republican campaign strategy—divide and conquer and turn people against each other, but this time with a constitutional twist,” said Democratic U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson of Lithonia.
Rather than trying to alter the Constitution, the Birthright Citizenship Act looks to change federal immigration laws to require that a child born in the U.S. also have at least one parent who is a U.S. citizen, a legal resident or “an alien performing active service in the armed forces” in order to become a citizen.