To date, there are a number of Secretary of State and two Supreme Court lawsuits attempting to press legal authorities to order the President-elect to reveal his original, “vault,” long-copy birth certificate. But what happens after all of the lawsuits are completed, regardless of their respective outcomes? How do we ensure that this issue never becomes an issue again?
I originally opined in a previous post (Background Check All Candidates For Federal Office?) about how it would be unconstitutional to require all candidates for federal office to submit themselves to a “Top Secret”-level security clearance as a prerequisite for ballot eligibility. However, there is something much simpler that could be done, and it would be precisely in line with the Constitution.
In Article 2, Section 1, we read the following:
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. [constitution.org]
My background check post outlines why having a full-fledged security clearance is not of absolute necessity for incoming candidates; our system is already reasonably set up to handle such political novices. Further, prima facia evidence — simply by a cursory observational inspection — can also help authorities determine if someone is “of age;” in this case, at least 35 years old, as well as having resided within the US for 14 years. Yet, one thing has been lacking — a process put in place to require an original birth certificate to be produced for any candidate seeking office.
Since making a federal requirement for a birth certificate would be met with significant resistance (and, potentially, requiring a constitutional amendment), I propose making this happen at the State level. Why? Because of the following two reasons:
- It would take only one State to stop an ineligible candidate in their tracks from proceeding any further, thereby causing other States to take notice;
- The Constitution only stipulates thatÂ a person (candidate) must be a “natural born citizen” and does not stipulate howÂ to determine this; let’s remember what the Tenth Amendment (12th Article of the Bill of Rights) stipulates in this regard:
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
Therefore, since the Constitution does not stipulate that the federalÂ government makes a determination in howÂ to make this determination, it is, by definition, a requirement and obligationÂ that the States or the People must do so
So, where do we start? Pennsylvania offers some hope in this regard. If “We the People” can encourage our respective State Legislators to draw up bills that require candidates (especially those for the Presidency) to furnish their full, original birth certificates for eligibility, I think we will be able to go a long way in setting up a reasonable process that keeps our country that much safer from potentially undue foreign influence.