May 28th, 2010
03:07 PM ET
4 years ago

Paul: No citizenship for children of undocumented immigrants

Rand Paul said he opposes citizenship for U.S. born children of undocumented immigrants.
Rand Paul said he opposes citizenship for U.S. born children of undocumented immigrants.

Washington (CNN) - Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul is once again making waves, this time for saying he opposes citizenship for U.S. born children of undocumented immigrants.

In an interview posted Wednesday on RT.com, a Russian television station that broadcasts in English, Paul said he favors modifying current law.

"We are the only country I know of that allows people to come in illegally, have a baby, and then that baby becomes a citizen," Paul said. "And I think that should stop also."

Paul, a Tea Party movement favorite, captured the Kentucky GOP primary last week, defeating establishment candidate Trey Grayson.

The 14th Amendment to the Constitution guarantees citizenship to individuals born in the United States, but Paul's position is not an unpopular one in Congress.

Legislation referred to as the Birthright Citizenship Act of 2009, a bill that has 91 co-sponsors, would modify the Immigration and Nationality Act to prevent U.S. citizenship for individuals born to undocumented immigrants.

Paul campaign chairman David Adams confirmed to CNN that Paul stands by his comments.

Paul also suggested that immigration policies favored by Democrats are politically motivated.

"I'm not opposed to letting people come in work and labor in our country, but I think what we should do is, we shouldn't provide an easy route to citizenship. A lot of this is about demographics," Paul said. "If you look at new immigrants from Mexico, they register three to one Democrat. The Democrat Party is for easy citizenship for allowing them to vote."

On his campaign website, Paul explains his position on immigration in terms of incentives and subsidies.

"I realize that subsidizing something creates more of it, and do not think the taxpayer should be forced to pay for welfare, medical care and other expenses for illegal immigrants. Once the subsidies for illegal immigration are removed, the problem will likely become far less common," Paul says.


Filed under: 2010 • Kentucky • Popular Posts • Rand Paul
soundoff (310 Responses)
  1. chris

    I realize that subsidizing something creates more of it, and do not think the taxpayer should be forced to pay for welfare, medical care and other expenses for illegal immigrants. Once the subsidies for illegal immigration are removed, the problem will likely become far less common," Paul says.

    So is he ok with ending Federal subsidies for BIG OIL?

    What a joke when I hear folks attack the Constitution. He thinks he can get 2/3 of the states to ratify something like that go ahead and try, more nails in the GOP coffin

    May 28, 2010 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  2. andrey

    There isn't much to say. You're an idiot Rand...

    May 28, 2010 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  3. chris b

    They register as Democrat for the same reason every other "brown" ethnicity registers 3+:1 Democrat (indian, african, native american, hispanic/south american, asian etc.) – Democrats are the party of inclusion and believe people come to this country for the same reason most white ancestors came here – to improve opportunities for themselves and their loved onces. Republicans forgot why their ancestors came here and somehow see the country as "white" country and want to "take it back"... I'd love to hear how they want to do that... genocide?

    May 28, 2010 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  4. Randy, San Francisco

    Keep talking Paul, you just can't help yourself. Thanks for exposing the Tea Party movement and the GOP as...heartless, cruel, mean spirited, and intolerant.

    May 28, 2010 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  5. HoustonVeteran

    I would agree with Paul except I think it should be modified to bestow citizenship if it can be proved beyond a doubt that at least one of the parents is and has been a U.S. citizen for at least 5 years before the birth of the child. The current policy is a throw back to colonial circumstances and does not reflect today's reality.

    May 28, 2010 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  6. MRC

    Mr Paul needs to brush up on his knowledge. Aside from the fact that it's specifically stated in the 14th amendment to the US Constitution, here's a list of other countries that allow jus soli:

    * Antigua and Barbuda
    * Argentina
    * Barbados
    * Belize
    * Bolivia
    * Brazil
    * Canada
    * Chile (children of transient foreigners or of foreign diplomats on assignment in Chile only upon request)
    * Colombia
    * Dominica
    * Dominican Republic
    * Ecuador
    * El Salvador
    * Fiji
    * Grenada
    * Guatemala
    * Guyana
    * Honduras
    * Jamaica
    * Lesotho
    * Malaysia
    * Mexico
    * Nicaragua
    * Pakistan
    * Panama
    * Paraguay
    * Peru
    * Saint Christopher and Nevis
    * Saint Lucia
    * Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
    * Trinidad and Tobago
    * United States
    * Uruguay
    * Venezuela

    May 28, 2010 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  7. Yair

    Well, he really makes sense!

    May 28, 2010 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  8. sssimon

    Frankly I agree and I'm a liberal. It is a pretty silly amendment. If it had never been there no one would be asking for it.

    Still – when was the last time the constitution was amended and what was involved and does anyone really think it is going to happen any time soon?

    So what was the point of saying this other than to send out a signal to the teabaggers?

    Rand Paul should stick to his libertarian agenda: Eliminating all federal government regulatory agencies and consumer protection regulations, eliminating taxation, social security, medicare and medicaid and legalising all recreational drugs, prostitution and gay marriage.

    Actually I agree with the last 3 but I'm not sure how well they will play with the teabaggers.

    May 28, 2010 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  9. say what?

    Mr Paul, anyone born in Canada is automatically a citizen, with a few (very rare) exceptions.

    We've been thinking about adopting a law that allows police to check the papers of anyone suspected to be from Arizona ...

    May 28, 2010 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  10. Sarcasm Man

    Ya, we should only let people who are going to vote Republican become citizens!

    May 28, 2010 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  11. Mike from DC

    Finally, someone with some uncommon common sense. This is a huge boon to illegals and when they come here, have a child that becomes a citizen, you have networks like CNN play to the emotions of the American public of "families torn apart". This is actually a good first step in curbing what is becoming a third world nation in America. If journalists actually cared about the Constitution they hide behind with the Bill of Rights, then maybe they should really start reporting stories with an "intellilectual" bend to them, and quit with the emotion. Only then can we have a real debate about the adverse affects of illegal immigration on our schools, neighborhoods, hospitals and the like. It's ok...I don't expect this to be posted...not part of the "overall agenda" for this network.

    May 28, 2010 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  12. American Patriot -- a "real" tea partier

    I never quite agreed with that rule although I know there are reasons for it and it is in the Constitution (it'll take another amendment to reverse it), but is this guy for real? Is he so stupid that he doesn't realize that immigration policies favored by Republicans are politically motivated?

    May 28, 2010 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  13. Americans are funny

    Give me your tired, your poor,
    Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
    Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
    I lift my lamp beside the golden door!

    May 28, 2010 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  14. ThinkAgain

    Perhaps Rand Paul should move to one of those countries that doesn't grant citizenship to children born there.

    I, for one, would not miss him one bit.

    May 28, 2010 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  15. uncle Ellsworthey

    He is right on with this one, it is an absolute necessity that we do this to help curb the "breaking up families" excuse. This should have been done long ago especially since we are the only country to do this.

    May 28, 2010 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  16. grrouse

    He and the whole Republicans party are RACIST and hate people of color. He true color is really showing. If he have his way, All black will be strip all black civil rights. He should just shut his mouth.

    May 28, 2010 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  17. Ryan

    This makes too much sense, Washington D.C. could never implement such a policy. Good for Mr. Paul.

    May 28, 2010 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  18. jp,michigan

    There are those who are pregnant, come to the USA close to the time of birth, just to have their child born in the USA and automatically become an American citizen. Then the entire family moves or stays here because the child is an automatic American citizen. This is wrong, and an abuse of the system!

    May 28, 2010 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  19. Ron in Asheville, NC

    Aw, c'mon. Let's not trot out that old hogwash about the taxpayer "subsidizing" illegals and their children again. Every responsible study done shows that that isn't the case, and most show that in fact those people subsidize the American taxpayer. There are good reasons for getting control of immigration into this country, but that isn't one of them.

    May 28, 2010 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  20. ThinkAgain

    The reason illegal immigrants come to our country is because (mostly Republican) employers are more than willing to break the law by hiring them.

    Where's Rand Paul's outrage at all these employers?

    May 28, 2010 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  21. Eli

    "Paul's new comment raises brows"

    I suspect that a wide majority of Americans share Paul's view that anchor babies are a big issue for this country.

    May 28, 2010 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  22. RBNH

    I love this guy!

    He will single handedly destroy the Tea Party movement!

    May 28, 2010 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  23. MikefromWV

    I still wouldn't vote for him, but at least he has finally taken a position that I can completely agree with.

    May 28, 2010 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  24. Jim

    A perfect example of why we are in so much trouble....hatred and bigotry on the right and complete, total incompetence on the left. Is there no one out there who has the guts to really be a leader....not just a leader of the extreme white but a leader of this vast mixture of people that represent what and who America is.

    May 28, 2010 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  25. Dave

    Not a bad idea...a lot of women cross the border just so they can give birth to their child on American soil, then reap the benefits that come with American citizenship.

    What he should rally for is to levy huge fines for businesses that hire illegal immigrants...that would keep more of them from coming north in search of work. I understand that they want a better life, but Mexico needs to do something to take care of their own citizens. If the American companies that have operations there would pay a higher wage, the Mexican economy might improve...but then, American companies will simply shut down their Mexican operations and move them overseas.

    May 28, 2010 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
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