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Trump makes immigration and birthrights leading issue of midterm election next week

Thursday, November 1st 2018 - 08:46 UTC
Full article 25 comments

President Donald Trump is intensifying his hard line immigration rhetoric heading into the midterm elections, 6 November, declaring that he wants to order an end to the constitutional right to citizenship for babies of non-citizens and unauthorized immigrants born on US soil. Read full article

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  • DemonTree

    “How ridiculous, we're the only country in the world where a person comes in, has a baby, and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States for 85 years with all of those benefits,”

    Lol, duh of course you don't get US citizenship by being born in some other country. But you do get Argentine citizenship if you're born in Argentina, Brazilian if you're born in Brazil, Canadian if you're born in Canada. Nearly every country in the Americas has birthright citizenship. (And nearly no country outside the Americas does.)

    I wonder whether he'll even try to do it, or whether it's just talk designed to get votes.

    Nov 01st, 2018 - 10:44 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • chronic

    “and subject to the jurisdiction thereof,”

    DT, why are you so ashamed of your land of origin?

    Nov 01st, 2018 - 02:41 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • DemonTree

    If you can put them in jail, they're under your jurisdiction.

    Actually, it's interesting that Argentina is willing to give the Falklanders citizenship, since they are clearly not under Argentina's jurisdiction (except briefly during the war). Presumably Argentina does not have that exception.

    Nov 01st, 2018 - 04:31 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Jack Bauer

    OK, Trump is wrong in claiming “we are the only country in the world that...”. Most of the countries in South, Central 'n America abide by “jus soli”, but I can see his point.....the amount of people who travel to the US, legally and/or ilegally, to have their baby there, is not a laughing matter....I know women who did just that.
    Many EU, Oceania countries - France, Ireland, UK, Switzerland, NZL, AUS, (n' JPN) apply 'jus sangunis', or slightly flexible versions of 'blood rights' (such as extended to 2nd, or 3rd generation, provided at least one parent/grandparent is a national of that country).
    But if Congress will approve such a change remains to be seen.....or can Trump sign it into law through an Executive Order ?

    Nov 02nd, 2018 - 09:53 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • DemonTree

    @JB
    Yes. Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, all those countries the immigrants are coming from have jus soli just like America. Jus sanguinis would not make sense in a country that was almost entirely populated by immigrants. But I bet plenty of Trump's supporters will believe him; a lot of Americans have never been abroad and don't know much about the rest of the world.

    Most European countries only ever gave citizenship by descent; jus soli was a British thing, but the UK restricted it in 1983, while Ireland maintained it until 2004 - the last in Europe. They removed it from their constitution after a case where a woman travelled to Ireland to give birth so she could get EU citizenship for her kid and avoid deportation from Britain.

    There's nothing inherently unreasonable about the US changing the rules so eg only children of at least one legal resident get citizenship. But I think for a large proportion of Americans it would conflict with their values, and it would almost certainly require a constitutional amendment. 'Under the jurisdiction off' was intended to exclude children of foreign diplomats (who have diplomatic immunity) and native Americans, who at the time were regarded as citizens of their respective tribes, with reservations being outside US law. (Also any children born to invaders during a foreign occupation, if that ever happens.)

    This is the 120 year old case where the Supreme Court ruled on citizenship:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Wong_Kim_Ark

    And if they have any sense they will NOT allow a president to change the constitution by Executive Order, it would set a terrible precedent. However, since the Republicans have been doing their best to load the Supreme Court with friendly (to them) judges, who knows.

    Nov 03rd, 2018 - 08:51 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Jack Bauer

    @DT
    The decision in the Wong Kim Ark case (1898) makes sense...and I too believe that if the Constitution is to be amended, it should NOT be done through an Executive Order ....otherwise, it just becomes a worthless piece of paper.
    The issue is delicate, but I still think that the US Congress should enact something to prevent the 'jus soli' from being 'abused'.

    Nov 03rd, 2018 - 07:08 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • DemonTree

    @JB
    I was wondering why Trump lied, but I suppose it's part of his (absurd) narrative that all the other countries in the world have been taking advantage of poor little America.

    “otherwise, it just becomes a worthless piece of paper.”

    Agreed. Even if it was to pass something I really wanted to happen, I would not support that. Other presidents have had executive orders declared unconstitutional, I hope they'd do the same in this case.

    If they wanted to change the citizenship rules, they could try to pass a constitutional amendment, but I do not think it would have enough support at this point. There are too many Americans who remember that their own ancestors were immigrants, and want the country to continue it's tradition of welcoming them. The current law has the virtue of simplicity, and not leaving people in legal limbo. Few would support 'returning' a child to a country they have never visited in their life and may not even speak the language of.

    Nov 03rd, 2018 - 09:29 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Jack Bauer

    @DT
    Don't know if he lied or simply badly-informed.....By the time, if and when such an issue goes forward, I think someone will advise him on the correct way to go about it.

    But his objective is NOT to stop immigration - which is unrealistic - but to avoid abuses.
    In that sense, I think he's right....today, the whole matter is (as you say) in a legal limbo, which just leads to social insecurity and chaos.
    Nothing wrong with “wanting the country to continue it's tradition of welcoming them”, but in an orderly, responsible fashion.
    “Few would support 'returning' a child to a country they have never visited in their life and may not even speak the language of”.....agree, but that is just one aspect of the whole problem....and quite frankly, 'that' is the least of it....exceptions can and should be made, until the rules are clear, but when people, knowing the rules, deliberately disobey them or try to get around them, that's when the law should stand firm.

    Nov 03rd, 2018 - 11:07 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • DemonTree

    @JB
    I don't believe there is a difference with Trump. He thinks whatever he wants to say at that moment is the truth, and if tomorrow he says the opposite, that is also the truth. I don't think it would occur to him for a moment that he should check whether something is true before saying it, it's just utterly irrelevant to him.

    And probably someone will advise him, and he may or may not listen. That's why his 'Muslim bans' were struck down several times by the courts, until he finally found a version they allowed - because he didn't listen to advice on what he is and is not able to do.

    Re trying to stop abuse, IIRC the law was changed several years ago so parents of a US citizen minor have no right to remain in the country. They can either take their child with them when they are deported, or leave it with US citizen relatives if they have any.

    “Nothing wrong with “wanting the country to continue it's tradition of welcoming them”, but in an orderly, responsible fashion.”

    The US does still have a small program giving out visas based on luck rather than qualifications - the green card lottery. But people born in some countries are banned from taking part due to America already having lots of immigration from there. Not surprisingly, Mexico is on this list (also Britain and Brazil, but you'd still be eligible, since you were born in Argentina). The US is also very generous (possibly too generous) in letting family of immigrants in. I don't know what the rules are like in Brazil, but in Britain they are ridiculously strict for non-EU immigrants - you can't even bring a foreign spouse in unless you earn over a certain amount. (At least in theory, in practice plenty of immigrants manage to get in somehow.)

    Nov 04th, 2018 - 12:25 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • chronic

    Yep, DT. Doubt you'd be lucky or talented enough.

    Nov 04th, 2018 - 06:48 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Jack Bauer

    @DT
    Anyhow, it's high-time that the rules be clearly defined, and foresee all possibilities, avoiding grey areas and /or loopholes.

    It's funny though, that most the countries in LatAm where the migrants come from, have official policies that criticize the US, as being the root of all evil, yet when it comes down to their people trying to get the hell out of their own, shitty countries, where do they all want to go ?

    Here during the elections, one message that circulated (spontaneously) over WhatsAPP, was : If you are in doubt whom to vote for, just ask yourself whether you'd rather go to Maduro's socialist Venezuela or to Trump's fascist USA ?

    I don't know what the rules are for entering / staying in Brazil, as I don't know any foreigners who have recently applied for permanent residence, but I don't think they are too strict ....especially after seeing the ease with which the dozens of 1000s of Venezuelans crossed the northern border, and have been taken to various States (where many have got their work permits and are starting to integrate).

    Nov 04th, 2018 - 08:15 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • DemonTree

    @Chronic
    Don't worry about me, I have several colleagues and friends who went to work in America, so it's not that hard to get a visa. Besides, I probably would be eligible for a family one if I really wanted. However, if I was going to work abroad for a few years, I'd rather go somewhere different, like Brazil.

    @JB
    The Venezuelans are refugees, so the fact they are allowed to stay does not mean anyone else would be. I googled to find out how hard it is to get a work visa for Brazil; the site I found says it's difficult and the rules are very confusing, but at the bottom of the page someone had helpfully commented, advising would be immigrants to have a baby in Brazil, since that entitles the parents to permanent residency. And it turns out there are actually companies ready to arrange this for you: “Imagine if that little bundle of joy was also a gateway to an exciting new life for your family in Brazil.” Disturbing, no?

    ”one message that circulated (spontaneously) over WhatsAPP“

    ”Spontaneously”, sure... It's bullshit, anyway; apart from the fact Trump isn't a fascist and his rhetoric isn't nearly as extreme as Bolsonaro's, there's no point in history when Brazilians wouldn't have preferred going to the US over Venezuela, no matter who governed either.

    And as for criticising the US, there's no contradiction. According to them, US policy causes Latin Americans to suffer so Americans can be better off. So for the former, their best option is to try and become one of the latter if they can.

    Nov 04th, 2018 - 10:23 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Jack Bauer

    @DT
    Alright, although the Venezuelans are refugees (escaping from a country that's gone down the drain and is violent) they are not “swarming” over the border in uncontrolled hordes....I heard that some are being deported (those caught committing crimes here, and/or probably those with known police records in VZ 'n Bzl.). Re yr search for a work visa in Brazil, it is absurd that some with qualifications should be denied entry, while others just walk over the border and are welcomed with open arms....and yr right, the“anchor baby” thing works here too..

    “Spontaneously” yes.....not BS......I was not paid, neither any of my friends, to divulge whatsAPP msgs that were accurate and the contents of which we agreed with...some , when they sounded a bit too good to be true, or fantastical, I checked out the info, and found quite a few were fake, or stale news....and made a point of letting the sender know.

    DT, might do you some good to come and spend a few years here.....probably wouldn't make you change your political preferences (presuming they are 'moderate socialism', like in EU), but would make you open your eyes as to how Brazilians think, feel and react to what happens here, and which Europeans never even hear of, or rely on biased sources to get altered versions of the truth....come and see it for yourself.

    “According to them, US policy causes Latin Americans to suffer so Americans can be better off.”...that is government policy, and is BS, the kinda crap they spread in order to unite around some (imagined) external threat....Brazil “used to” do that a lot years ago, claiming the “imperialist north” was to blame for all their internal problems...like shitty education, lack of sanitation, poverty, crime, poor economic results.....until the political class came to realize that the people were realizing the source of the problem was internal...and that the politicians were the problem.....that kind of rhetoric/excuse was abandoned when it no longer 'stuck'.

    Nov 05th, 2018 - 06:49 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • DemonTree

    Brazil doesn't have that much immigration these days, so probably no one has seen the need to change the law on anchor babies like in the US did. However, I do worry that with the influx of Venezuelans, you'll see the spread of xenophobia in Brazil, same as has happened in the US and Europe. It already happened in that town near the border that saw the brunt of the influx.

    “might do you some good to come and spend a few years here”

    It probably would. It's ironic that when I was younger I didn't have the confidence to go and live abroad, and now that I do it would be much more complicated and difficult. If I could take the things I've learned and go back to then... but I suppose everyone would like to do that. Anyway, I doubt I'd have much luck getting a work visa in Brazil without speaking a word of Portuguese. Most emigrants from the UK go to other English speaking countries, and I suppose it gives us an advantage. Plus Americans don't hate immigrants from Britain, unlike those from Mexico.

    “I was not paid, neither any of my friends”

    Okay, so once the messages are out there, people spread them to their friends, but someone is creating all the fake news and propaganda - probably whatever companies have replaced Cambridge Analytica. And good for you for checking, but most people don't bother, and spread the fake news as readily as the true. And I still say it's a very biased comparison; Brazilians would also have preferred living in the US under Obama to eg Argentina under Macri.

    Re the US in Latin America, between the economic imperialism, the invasions, the coups, and the bloody dictatorships, they've earned the hatred they receive. It's notable how much better the region has done since the end of the cold war, when the US relaxed its grip. Of course that doesn't stop the various governments blaming the US for problems they created themselves. Politicians do love a good scapegoat.

    Nov 05th, 2018 - 09:24 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Jack Bauer

    @DT
    “...I do worry that with the influx of Venezuelans...”,.

    Up in Pacaraima, yes, and it only started for two reasons : one, the already insufficient public resources (health - measles brought by Venezuelans - and schools) had to be stretched even more, to try to cope with the same number of refugees as the local population, and two, it got serious when a Brazilian shop-owner was allegedly assaulted and beaten by Venezuelans....a few 1000 venezuelans have alrdy been taken to other States, from where have not heard reports of xenophobia.
    Other than isolated sparks which might ignite xenophobia, one should remember that Venezuelans crossing the border are very similar to the majority of Brazilians (interracial mix between blacks 'n whites, and both of them with the indigenous populations), so I don't see a racial problem there....as long as unemployment is high, the Venezuelans might be a sore point for Brazilians, although the former appear to be more willing to work than many Brazilians.

    “Okay, so once the messages are out there....”. Sure millions of people spread fake news like hell, all depends on their intelligence and 'honesty'....only an idiot will pass it on knowing it's fake, and if he's not sure, he should check.

    Regarding the PT's accusation that businessmen supporting Bolsonaro had hired companies to fire off millions of fake news messages via WhatsAPP, no evidence to corroborate the accusation was found, despite being looked into by the TSE and the Attorney General's office....and considering that the PT always accuses others of doing what they do, the accusations themselves were most likely false.....just to create turmoil, days before the 2nd round of the elections.

    The comparison between Maduro's VZ and Trump's USA was not intended as proof of anything, just a joke.

    “when the US relaxed its grip.” and doesn't that make sense ? “...”love a scapegoat“, yes.

    Just fyi have reply ready to post re ”Lula on stage....

    Nov 06th, 2018 - 03:34 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • DemonTree

    “health - measles brought by Venezuelans”

    Yeah, they haven't been able to afford vaccinations for a while. It's terrible what's happened to Venezuela's healthcare. And spreading them out to different states is defenitely a good idea. I think however similar they are to Brazilians, there is bound to be resentment if there are a large number in one area. The Poles, Hungarians etc who came to the UK are white and mostly indistinguishable from the natives, but people still resent them for 'taking our jobs', and for being foreign and speaking a different language. In the town where I live, there are areas where you only hear foreign languages now, and the whole region was strongly pro-Brexit in the referendum.

    Oh, and now I'm wondering if you have ever been mistaken for a tourist while speaking English, and had someone talk behind your back in Portuguese, not knowing you could understand?

    Re fake news, it's impossible to track messages in Whatsapp, but someone must be inventing it. Where do you think it is coming from if not companies? From the campaigns themselves? This article summarises the fake news attacking both candidates, and found a lot more about Haddad than Bolsonaro:

    https://congressoemfoco.uol.com.br/eleicoes/das-123-fake-news-encontradas-por-agencias-de-checagem-104-beneficiaram-bolsonaro/

    A lot of those stories sound completely ridiculous, and the people passing them on really should have known better.

    As for Maduro, the PT should have distanced themselves long ago, links with Venezuela can only hurt their credibility. I don't know if they stick with the Chavistas out of a misguided sense of loyalty, or are still in denial.

    Nov 06th, 2018 - 10:16 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Jack Bauer

    @DT
    “ there is bound to be resentment if there are a large number in one area”.....that’s what was happening up north….and some locals who can’t get a job, while some Venezuelans might, will use that as an excuse.

    It has happened, but the other way around – a couple of times, Brazilians who have presumed I didn’t speak English, thought they' be smart by speaking English behind my back....to see their faces => “priceless”.

    As I've said b4, Brazilians are very creative....seconds after any noteworthy event - serious, funny, or tragic - jokes (some clever) pop up all over the place on social network....under the PT, bloggers paid by the govt, used to spread fake news about Dilma's achievements etc, so IMO, messages usually originate from one individual, be sent to 100s of friends, and then it just multiplies geometrically...when I do get this stuff from friends, many times days or weeks after the event (stale news) I usually just delete it.

    Had a look at the link, and of the 123 fake posts, I don’t remember having seen more than 10. But be sure fake posts number 1000s, not only 100s. One I do recall, was the accusation that Adelio (B’s aggressor) was affiliated to the PT…only slightly off, had belonged to PSOL, staunch PT ally.
    Most are ridiculous - photos with fake captions , or photo-shopped images are common…most intelligent, or well-informed people should/would give them no credit.

    The PT still defends Chavismo ‘n absolutely refuses to criticize Maduro.…to denounce them would be to denounce their own history, which would undermine their credibility with their more fanatical followers.

    Nov 07th, 2018 - 05:43 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • DemonTree

    “and some locals who can’t get a job, while some Venezuelans might, will use that as an excuse”

    Yes, and if Poles here can get a job while the Brits can't, what does that say? (Brexit, apparently...)

    “Brazilians who have presumed I didn’t speak English, thought they' be smart by speaking English behind my back....to see their faces => “priceless”. ”

    Lol, oops. I wish I could've seen their faces too. :) But I wonder why they assumed that, is speaking English not that common?

    “Brazilians are very creative”

    :o))'s cartoons give some impression of that, but presumably those are done by professionals. It's a shame that fake news gets mixed in with the jokes and clever comments. Which ones did you see, and was it obvious they were fake? Just reading the list most of them seem obviously absurd to me, it's hard to believe anyone would believe them, and yet people do.

    “to denounce them would be to denounce their own history, which would undermine their credibility with their more fanatical followers.”

    I guess that's the reason, then, but surely there are a lot more people put off by their support for a failed regime than they would lose by abandoning the Chavistas?

    Nov 07th, 2018 - 10:06 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Jack Bauer

    @DT
    ““and some locals who can’t get a job, while some Venezuelans might, will use that as an excuse”....there's more it it than just that.....even those who don't want to work resent their presence, as it shows how lazy they are.

    ”But I wonder why they assumed that...” Amongst the better educated, most will have a reasonable compehension of English, but perhaps they just wanted to show how smart they were....

    Brazilian creativity : today, friends posted 2 photos : one, a photo of Nestor Cervero (one of the convicted PB directors) whose left eye is abt 1 inch lower than his right eye...the caption : “by what I can see, the 'left' is falling...” ; the other, the gallery in the presidential palace, where the presidents’ portrait photos are hung....Lula's is covered by jail bars.

    Of the fake news items listed, I remember having seen #s 24,25,26,35,36,45,46,56,61,64,98…all obviously fake, except for 25,35,61, which I had some doubt.

    “but surely there are a lot more people put off by their support for a failed regime than they would lose by abandoning the Chavistas?”
    One would think so, but considering that most ‘petistas’ are in the lower classes, who are either dependent on some policy they (are led to) believe is exclusive to the PT, or are not that well informed, it doesn’t make much difference if the PT supports Maduro.
    But imo, the PT won’t / wouldn’t denounce Maduro, even as an election strategy, because they are birds of a feather.

    Nov 08th, 2018 - 05:50 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • DemonTree

    “even those who don't want to work resent their presence, as it shows how lazy they are.”

    I wonder if that's also the case here? They made a TV program where they tried to get jobs for people on the dole, eg in a curry restaurant, and some of them didn't even turn up for the first shift. The others gave up after a few days, saying it was too hard. The same thing happened with fruit picking, the farmers said hardly any Brits applied and those who did soon quit, so they had to get Poles and Bulgarians to do it.

    “Brazilian creativity”

    Okay, that is funny. What's wrong with Nestor Cervero's eye? I think I'd have trouble looking him in the face if I ever met him.

    “it doesn’t make much difference if the PT supports Maduro”

    That's all the more reason to stop, since it definitely does put off the smarter voters. I suppose they must really believe in them...

    Nov 08th, 2018 - 07:30 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Jack Bauer

    @DT
    Re Cerveró, presume you've seen a photo of him....his eye being dislocated is probably the result of some medical condition...to look into his 'eyes' (simultaneously) would be tricky.....you'd have to focus on one or the other...

    Well, what can you expect from people who support a party that defends Maduro ? Afaic, not much.

    Nov 08th, 2018 - 08:27 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • DemonTree

    Yeah, I googled him. I used to have a colleague at work who had a squint, it was disconcerting because I was never sure if he was looking at me or not. But I didn't work with him very much, I suppose I would have got used to it if I had.

    Nov 09th, 2018 - 12:36 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Jack Bauer

    Just fyi, you have a reply under “Several Army Generals expected to...”

    BTW, just to 'waste' some time with nothing important : Terry is really losing it now.....he has given up trying to say anything sensible - which must be very hard for him - ...he just focuses on how he thinks he's proved everything he says and how everyone else is a liar.
    D'you think the schizo will find this post and deny he is nuts ?

    Nov 09th, 2018 - 02:25 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • DemonTree

    Oh man. One of my colleagues left today, and we hadn't spent our entertainment budget for the year. So we went to the steakhouse and everyone ordered a sharing steak... each. And a dessert - mine turned out to be a solid ball of chocolate 4 inches across - and the most expensive wine. It cost nearly £1000 for the team and I think I'm going to puke.

    Terry is nuts, I'm sure he must be autistic or something. I'd feel sorry for him if he wasn't such an insulting asshole. He just seems to have zero ability to step outside himself and see things from other people's points of view.

    Nov 09th, 2018 - 09:43 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Jack Bauer

    @DT
    Sounds like u had a feast 'n a 1/2 !..the worst is trying to digest it afterwards.
    Cont “Sevl Army....”)
    “Favourable”, yes, but ‘extremely’ generous (to a fault), a big burden to biz ; in that sense, I’d imagine it’s more rational in UK. Why Lula said that ? because he’s an uneducated pig. Was footage fm PT campaign propaganda (2010, Pelotas, for some reason is made fun of - full of homos ?), ‘n Lula was there to promote PTs candidate for Mayor (Marroni, the other guy). Must’ve been getting ready to film, when Lula decided to make a rude joke abt the town he was visiting. Looks like the footage fell into the hands of an adversary party, which used it to show Lula’s thoughts on Pelotas.
    Brazil has become a fan of ‘quotas’….blacks in Universities, in companies, on TV (propaganda, films, soaps), now in politics. The target is 30 %....never heard of anything as ridiculous. It obliges the parties to have 30% of female candidates, even though there aren’t enough women willing AND qualified. To see some of them, put there only to fulfill the quota, if not sad, would be hilarious.
    You still haven’t understood B’s comments abt women earning equal pay as men (in equivalent jobs); his comments were restricted to a very specific situation, ‘domestic servants’- if ‘he’ had any, which in itself is almost meaningless, becos if you had male ‘n female servants, they would not be doing similar jobs. The TV presenter asked him, knowing it was a tricky subject, with the obvious intention of wrenching applause from audience, at her guest’s expense, as if she were a gladiator for oppressed women. The only footage you see of Bolsonaro, is what the biased media decides to show you….have you seen any in which he advocates strict adherence to the Constitution, (including equal pay). “…which is why I must fight against the right.”…but of course, only the ‘right’ is extreme, 'n the left has all the solutions…funny, LatAm countries that embraced left-wing policy, are all screwed. Why ?

    Nov 10th, 2018 - 09:40 pm - Link - Report abuse 0

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