Wednesday, October 13, 2010

QUOTATIONS FROM THE 39TH CONGRESS RELEVANT TO THE 14th AMENDMENT

Civil Rights Act of 1866 Debates

"we are passing a law declaratory of what, in my judgment, the law now is..." Senator Trumbull (Senate Judiciary Chairman and author of the citizenship clause of the Civil Rights Act), Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 574 (1866).

"birth entitles a person to citizenship, that every free-born person in this land is, by virtue of being born here, a citizen of the United States." Senator Trumbull, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st session. 600 (1866)

"And, as is suggested by a Senator-behind me, even the infant child of a foreigner born in this land is a citizen of the United States long before his father." Senator Trumbull (reply to President Johnsons's Veto), William Horatio Barnes, History of the Thirty-ninth Congress of the United States, pg. 254 (1868).

"I understand that under the naturalization laws the children who are born here of parents who have not been naturalized are citizens. Is not the child born in this country of German parents a citizen?" Senator Trumbull, CONG. GLOBE, 39th Cong., 1st Sess. 497 (1866).

"I am afraid that we have got very few citizens in some of the counties of good old Pennsylvania if the children born of German parents are not citizens."' Sen. Trumbull, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 498 (1866)

"The children of Germans parents are citizens; but German are not Chinese." Sen. Cowen, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 498 (1866)

"Undoubably." Sen. Trumbull, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 498 (1866)(in reply to Sen. Cowen's question whether [the Civil Rights Act] will not have the effect of naturalizing the children of Chinese and Gypsies born in this country).

"It is competent for Congress to declare, under the Constitution of the United States, who are citizens. If there were any question about it, it would be settled by the passage of a law declaring all persons born in the United States to be citizens thereof. That this bill proposes to do." Senator Trumbull, Cong. Globe, 1st Sess. 39th Congress, pt. 1, p. 475 (1866).

"whenever they [indians] are separated from their tribes, and come within the jurisdiction of the United States so as to be counted, they are citizens of the United States." Senator Trumbull, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess. 572 (1866).

"The senator from Missouri and myself desire to arrive at the same point precisely, and that is to make citizens of everybody born in the United States who owe allegiance to the United States. We cannot make a citizen of the child of a foreign minister who is temporarily residing here. There is a difficulty in framing the amendment so as to make citizens of all the people born in the United States, and who owe allegiance to it. I thought that might, perhaps, be the best form in which to put the amendment at one time, 'that all persons born in the United States, and owing allegiance thereto, are hereby declared to be citizens;' but, upon investigation, it was found that a sort of allegiance was due to the country from persons temporarily residing in it whom we would have no right to make citizens, and that that form would not answer. Then it was suggested that we should make citizens of all persons born in the United States not subject to any foreign power or tribal authority. The objection to that was, that there were Indians not subject to tribal authority, who yet were wild and untamed in their habits, who had by some means or other become separated from their tribes, and were not under the laws of any civilized community, and of whom the authorities of the United States took no jurisdiction. . . . Then it was proposed to adopt the amendment as it now stands,—that all persons born in the United States, not subject to any foreign power, excluding Indians not taxed, shall be citizens." Senator Trumbull, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess. 572 (1866).

"This provision [the citizenship clause of the Civil Rights Act] is simply declaratory of what the law now is." Rep. Wilson, (House Judiciary chairman and House Manager of the Civil Rights Act) Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess. 1115 (1866).

"Blackstone says 'The first and most obvious division of the people is into aliens and natural-born subjects. Natural-born subjects are such as are born within the dominions of the crown of England, that is, within the ligeance, or as it is generally called, the allegiance of the king; and aliens, such as are born out of it.' The principle here laid down applies to this country as well as to England. It makes a man a subject in England, and a citizen here… The English Law made no distinction on account of race or color in declaring that all persons born within its jurisdiction are natural-born subjects. This law bound the colonies before the revolution, and was not changed afterward. The Constitution of the United States recognizes the division of the people into the two classes named by Blackstone - natural born and naturalized citizens." Rep. Wilson. Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lest Sess. 1116 (1866).

"It is in vain we look into the Constitution of the United States for a definition of the term "citizen." It speaks of citizens, but in no express terms defines what it means by it. We must depend upon the general law relating to subject and citizens recognized by all nations for a definition, and that must lead to a conclusion that every person born in the United States is a natural born citizen of such States, except it may be that children born on our soil to temporary sojourners or representatives of foreign Governments are native born citizens of the United States. Thus it is expressed by a writer on the Constitution of the United States: "Therefore every person born within the United States, its territories or districts, whether the parents are citizens or aliens, is a natural born citizen in the sense of the Constitution, and entitled to all the rights and privileges appertaining to that capacity." Rawle on the Constitution, pg. 86." Rep. Wilson. Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess. 1117 (1866).

"On this question of citizenship, Mr. Marcy, while he was Secretary of State, in a note dated March 6, 1854, expressed himself as follows: 'Although, in general, it is not the duty of the Secretary of State to express opinions of law, and doubts may be entertained of the expedience of making an answer to your inquiries an exception to this rule, yet, I am under the impression that every person born in the United States must be considered a citizen of the United States, notwithstanding one or both of his parents may have been alien, at the time of its birth.' I quote this not to claim that it was written concerning a colored persons, but for the purpose of showing how broad the rule is that Mr. Marcy affirmed. Every person born in the United States must include negroes, for they are persons born in the United Sates; and I submit that, under the rule thus laid down, all such persons must be considered to be citizens of the United States." Rep. Wilson. Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess. 1116 (1866).

"As matter of law, does anybody deny here, or anywhere, that the native-born is a citizen, and a citizen by virtue of his birth alone ... Sir, he has forgotten the grand principle both of nature and nations, both of law and politics, that birth gives citizenship of itself. this is the fundamental principle running through all modern politics both in this country and in Europe. Everywhere where the principle of law have been recognized at all, birth by its inherent energy and force gives citizenship. There for the founders of this government made no provision - of course they made none - for the naturalization of natural born citizens.... Therefore, sir, this amendment, although it is a grand enunciation, although it is a lofty and sublime declaration, has no force or efficiency as an enactment. I hail it and accept it simply as a declaration...." Senator Morrill, Cong. Globe, 1st Sess. 39th Congress, pt. 1, pg. p. 570 (1866).

"The honorable Senator from Kentucky...forgets this general process of nations and or nature by which every man, by his birth, is entitled to citizenship, and upon the general principle that he owes allegiance to the country of his birth, and that country owes him protection. That is the foundation, in my understanding, of all citizenship..." Senator Morrill, Cong. Globe, 1st Sess. 39th Congress, pt. 1, pg. p. 570 (1866).

"What is this declaration? All persons born in this country are citizens. That never was so before. Although I have said that by the fundamental principles of American law all persons were entitled to be citizens by birth, we all know that there was an exceptional condition in the Government of the country which provided for an exception to this general rule." Senator Morrill, Cong. Globe, 1st Sess. 39th Congress, pt. 1, pg. p. 570 (1866).

"It is a rule of universal law, adopted and maintained among all nations, that they who are born upon the soil are the citizens of the State. They owe allegiance to the state, and are entitled to the protection of the State. Such is the law, whether you put it into this bill or nor. So far as this declaration of the bill is concerned, it is but reiterating an existing and acknowledged principle of law." Rep. Thayer, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 1152 (1866)

"As a positive enactment this would hardly seem necessary....What is a citizen but a human being who, by reason of his being born within the jurisdiction of a government, owes allegiance to that government?'' Congressman Broomall, Cong. Globe, 1st Sess. 39th Congress, pt. 1, pg. 1262 (1866).

"Now where is the authority to except the native-born African from the application of the general rule of law that every native shall be a citizen of the country on whose soil he is born?" Rep. Raymond, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 1266 (1866).

"The bill [the Civil Rights Act] proposes two things: 1. To declare who shall be citizens of the United States, and declares that all shall be citizens without distinction of race, color, or previous condition of servitude, who are, have been, or shall be born within the limits and jurisdiction of the United States..." Mr. Raymond, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 1266 (1866).

"Now that we are fixing the law on the subject, why not declare every man born in the United States to be a citizen of the United States, irrespective of race or previous condition?....Why not give him the rights of United States citizenship if he is not connected to a tribe and thereby quasi a foreigner owing allegiance to a quasi foreign power." Senator Henderson, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 5711 (1866).


"The substitute which I have offered declares - That all person born, or herinafter to be born, within the limits and jurisdiction of the United States, shall be deemed and considered, and are hereby declared to be, citizens of the United States, and entitled to all rights and privileges as such." Mr. Raymond, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 1266 (1866).

"This bill provides that all persons born within the United States, excepting those that do not owe allegiance to the United States government, as children of ambassadors of foreign powers, and such are not subject to our laws... Rep. Cook, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 1124 (1866)

"It has been assumed here by various gentlemen, and I believe by my learned and most respected friend from Maryland, that any person, be he of what race or color be may, born within the United states, is by the effect and operation of the constitution made a citizen." Sen. Davis, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 597 (1866).

"But I go on; I beg pardon for this digression. I maintain that a negro cannot be made a citizen by congress; he cannot be made a citizen by any naturalization laws because the naturalization laws apply to foreigners alone....Congress has no power, as I said before, to naturalize a citizen. They could not be made citizens by treaty. If they are made so at all, it is by their birth, and the locality of birth, and the general operation and effect of our Constitution...Then, if a negro is a citizen of the United States at all, he is a citizen by birth and by operation of the Constitution.." Sen. Davis, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 598 (1866).

"It is a singular fact, however, that to-day, under the Federal Constitution, a negro may be elected President, United States Senator, or a member of the lower branch of Congress. In that instrument no qualification for office is prescribed which rejects the negro. The white man, not native born, may not be President, but the native-born African may be." Sen. Henderson, Cong. Globe, 1st Sess. 39th Congress, pt. 1, pg. 387 (1866)

"The Constitution of the United States provides that no person but a native-born citizen of the United States, with other qualifications as to age and residence, shall be president of the United States.... Is the Congress of the United States prepared at this time to adopt a proposition that negroes and Indians and Chinese and all persons of that description shall be eligible to the office of President..." Senator Williams, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess. 573 (1866).

"Now if you pass this bill you will allow the negroes of this country to compete for the high office of President of the United States, because if they are citizens at all, they come within the meaning and letter of the constitution of the united states, which allows all natural born citizens to become candidates for the Persistency..." Rep. Rogers, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 1122 (1866).

"I want to make another extract from the speech from the gentleman from New Jersey. He said 'If you pass this bill you will allow negroes to compete for the high office of President of the United States.' As for the fear which haunts the gentleman from New Jersey, if there is a negro in the country who is so far above all the white men of the country that only four million of his own race can elect him president of the United states over twenty six million of white people, I think we ought to encourage such talent in the country." Rep. Windham, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 1158 (1866)

"This provision comprehends the Chinese of the Pacific States, Indians subject to taxation, the people called Gypsies, as well as the entire race designated as blacks, people of color, negroes, mulattoes, and persons of African blood. Every individual of those races, born in the United States, is by the bill made a citizen of the United States." President Johnson's Veto Message, William Horatio Barnes, History of the Thirty-ninth Congress of the United States, pg. 252 (1868).

"How is it that every person born in these United States owes allegiance to the Government? Every thing that he is or has, his property and his life, may be taken by the Government of the United States in its defense, or to maintain the honor of the nation. And can it be that our ancestors struggled through a long war and set up this Government, and that the people of our day have struggled through another war, with all its sacrifices and all its desolation, to maintain it, and at last that we have got a Government which is all-powerful to command the obedience of the citizen, but has no power to afford him protection? Is that all that this boasted American citizenship amounts to? Go tell it, sir, to the father whose son was starved at Andersonville; or the widow whose husband was slain at Mission Ridge; or the little boy who leads his sightless father through the streets of your city, made blind by the winds and the sand of the Southern coast; or the thousand other mangled heroes to be seen on every side, that this Government, in defense of which the son and the husband fell, the father lost his eyes, and the others were crippled, had the right to call these persons to its defense, but has no right to protect the survivors or their friends in any right whatever in any of the States. Sir, it can not be. Such is not the meaning of our Constitution. Such is not the meaning of American citizenship. This Government, which would go to war to protect its meanest--I will not say citizen--inhabitant, if you please, in any foreign land, whose rights were unjustly encroached upon, has certainly some power to protect its own citizens in their own country. Allegiance and protection are reciprocal rights." Senator Trumbull, William Horatio Barnes, History of the Thirty-ninth Congress of the United States, pg. 255 (1868)

"What I said then I say now, that as far as the United States are concerned, all persons born within the limits of the United States are to be considered as citizens, and that without reference to the color or the race; and after the abolition of slavery the negro would stand precisely in the condition of the white man....Now, what does this bill propose? All born within the United States are to be considered citizens of the United States, and as such shall have in every State all the rights that belong to any body else in the State as far as the particular subjects stated in the bill are concerned. " Senator Johnson (Message supporting President Johnson's Veto), William Horatio Barnes, History of the Thirty-ninth Congress of the United States, pg. ___ (1868)

“Mr. Justice Curtis held that the Constitution of the United States assumes that citizenship can be acquired by nativity. That is the common law, that is the law of the civilized world, that he would is born in a country, and not made a slave at the moment of birth by any municipal law, becomes, by virtue of his birth, a citizen…” Senator Johnson, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess. 1776 (1866).

“This clause is unnecessary, but nevertheless proper, since it is only declaratory of what is the law without it. This has been sufficiently demonstrated by the by the distinguished chairman of the judiciary committee and by the authorities he has cited ….. In the great case of Lynch vs. Clarke, it was conclusively shown that in the absence of all constitutional provision or congressional law declaring citizenship by birth, “it must be regulated by some rule of national law coeval with the existence of the Union” it was and is that “all citizens that children born here, are citizens, without any regard to the political condition or allegiance of their parents.” Rep. Lawrence, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess. 1832 (1866)(House reply to Johnson’s veto).

"The freedmen of the United States are citizens of the United States; not citizens under the naturalization law, not citizens by virtue of any treaty, but citizens because they are born native to the soil." Sen. Lane, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess. 741 (1866)


14th Amendment Debates

"A citizen of the United States is held by the courts to be a person who was born within the limits of the United States and subject to their laws..... They became such in virtue of national law, or rather of natural law which recognizes persons born within the jurisdiction of every country as being subjects or citizens of that country. Such persons were, therefore, citizens of the United States, as were born in the country or were made such by naturalization; and the Constitution declares that they are entitled, as citizens, to all the privileges and immunities of citizens in the several States." Senator Howard (author of the citizenship clause of the 14th Amendment), Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess. 2765-66 (1866).

""I have always believed that every person, of whatever race or color, who was born within the United States was a citizen of the United States...The Senator says a person may be born here and not be a citizen. I know that is so in one instance, in the case of the children of foreign ministers who reside "near" the United States in the diplomatic language. By a fiction of law such persons are not supposed to be residing here, and under that fiction of law their children would not be citizens of the United States." Senator Wade, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess.2768-69 (1866).

"If there are to be citizens of the United States entitled everywhere to the character of citizens of the United States, there should be some certain definition of what citizenship is, what has created the character of citizen as between himself and the United States, and the amendment says citizenship may depend upon birth, and I know of no better way to give rise to citizenship than the fact of birth within the territory of the United States, born of parents who at the time were subject to the authority of the United States." Sen. Johnson, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 2893 (1866)

"The proposition before us, I will say, Mr. President, relates simply in that respect to the children begotten of Chinese parents in California, and it is proposed to declare that they shall be citizens. We have declared that by law [the Civil Rights Act]; now it is proposed to incorporate the same provision in the fundamental instrument of the nation. I am in favor of doing so. I voted for the proposition to declare that the children of all parentage whatever, born in California, should be regarded and treated as citizens of the United States, entitled to equal civil rights with other citizens of the United States. Senator Conness, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 2890 (1866)

"If the Indian is bound to obey the law he is subject to the jurisdiction of the country; and that is the question I desired the Senator to meet as a legal question, whether the Indian would be bound to obey the law which Congress in express terms extended over him in regard to questions within the jurisdiction of Congress." Senator Hendricks, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 2894 (1866).

"In one sense, all persons born within the geographical limits of the United States are subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, but they are not subject to the jurisdiction of the United States in every sense. Take the child of an ambassador. In one sense, that child born in the United States is subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, because if that child commits the crime of murder, or commits any other crime against the laws of the country, to a certain extent he is subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, but not in every respect; and so with these Indians. All persons living within a judicial district may be said, in one sense, to be subject to the jurisdiction of the court in that district, but they are not in every sense subject to the jurisdiction of the court until they are brought, by proper process, within the reach of the power of the court." Senator Williams, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 2897 (1866).

"Why, sir, what does it mean when you say that a people are subject to the jurisdiction of the United States? Subject, first, to its military power; second, subject to its political power; third, subject to its legislative power; and who doubts our legislative power over the reservations upon which these Indians are settled?" Senator Doolittle, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 2896 (1866).

"in which he states clearly that the Indians, though born upon our soil, owing us allegiance, are not citizens; they are our subjects; and that is the very word which is used in this amendment proposed to the Constitution of the United States, declaring that if they be "subject" to our jurisdiction, born on our soil, they are, ipso facto, citizens of the United States." Senator Doolittle, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong. 1st Sess. 2896 (1866).

"The Constitution of the United States declares that no one but a native-born citizen of the United States shall be President of the United States. Does, then, every person living in this land who does not happen to have been born within its jurisdiction undergo pains and penalties and punishment all his life, because by the Constitution he is ineligible to the Presidency? Senator Trumbull, Cong. Globe, 39th Cong., lst Sess. 2901(1866).

Comments by members of 39th Congress outside of 1866 Debates

"By the terms of the Constitution he must have been a citizen of the United States for nine years before he could take a seat here, and seven years before he could take a seat in the other House; and, in order to be President of the United States, a person must be a native-born citizen. It is the common law of this country, and of all countries, and it was unnecessary to incorporate it in the Constitution, that a person is a citizen of the country in which he is born....I read from Paschal's Annotated Constitution, note 274: "All persons born in the allegiance of the king are natural born subjects, and all persons born in the allegiance of the United States are natural born citizens. Birth and allegiance go together. Such is the rule of the common law, and it is the common law of this country as well as of England. There are two exceptions, and only two, to the universality of its application. The children of ambassadors are, in theory, born in the allegiance of the powers the ambassadors represent, and slaves, in legal contemplation, are property, and not persons." Sen. Trumbull, Cong. Globe. 1st Session, 42nd Congress, pt. 1, pg. 575 (1872)

"I hold in my hand Paschal's annotated edition of the Constitution, four pages and a half of which are filled with references to decisions of the courts, from .the beginning of the century until now, declaring in the plainest terms that all free persons, born or naturalized in the United States, are citizens thereof. A weak attempt was made in the Dred Scott case to exclude free colored persons from the rights of citizenship, but that feature of the opinion was in opposition to the main body of previous precedents and to all subsequent decisions. I will quote but one or two of the many declarations of our constitutional teachers. Chancellor Kent says: " Citizens, under our Constitution and laws, mean free inhabitants born within the United States or naturalized under the laws of Congress." Rep. James Garfield, Cong. Globe. 1st Session, 42nd Congress, pt. 2, pg. 152 of appendix (1871).

"It simply declares who shall be citizens of the United States. But the fact that certain persons are citizens, and the number of them, and the definition of citizenship or of its constituent elements, were just the same before the ratification of the fourteenth amendment that they are now. Neither is more certain or better settled than it was before. The thirteenth amendment had made all persons of color citizens of the United States if they were not hitherto. Then the body of the citizens is in no way materially changed by this fourteenth amendment. On this point I do not wish to stand without great and worthy authority; and I shall therefore incorporate in my remarks an extract from Chancellor Kent directly sustaining my position in reference to this provision: "Citizens, under our Constitution and laws, mean free inhabitants born within the United States or naturalized under the laws of Congress." Rep. Kerr., Cong. Globe. 1st Session, 42nd Congress, pt. 2, pg. 47 of appendix (1871).

"But I recur to the precise words of the fourteenth amendment, which I have quoted, and I say, neither does the paragraph under consideration define citizen, or the constituent elements of citizenship of the United States or of the States. It leaves both where it found them, to rest upon the common law and the laws of the several States. These words are nowhere precisely defined in the Constitution, laws, or judicial decisions of our country; but in the uniform practice of the country, in many learned commentaries, and numberless judicial decisions touching the subject more or less directly, they have been so nearly defined as to remove all doubt as to their substantial meaning." Rep. Kerr., Cong. Globe. 1st Session, 42nd Congress, pt. 2, pg. 47 of appendix (1871).

“Why, all the world knows, the most unlettered of our people understand, that every human being born within the jurisdiction of any nation, or naturalized under its laws, is, by virtue of those facts alone, a citizen of that country in the fullest and amplest sense of the term.” Rep. Kerr., Cong. Globe. 1st Session, 42nd Congress, pt. 2, pg. 47 of appendix (1871).

"Mr. HOWARD. I have two objections to this amendment. The first is that it proposes to change the existing Constitution in reference to qualifications of President of the United States. If this amendment shall be adopted, then that clause of the Constitution which requires that the President of the United States shall be a native-born citizen of the United States is repealed, and any person who hasbeen naturalized and then become a citizenof the United States will be eligible to the office of President;" The congressional globe, Volume 61, Part 2. pg. 1013 (1869)

"The Constitution requires that the President must be a native-born citizen of the United States." Sen. Sherman, The congressional globe, Volume 61, Part 2. pg. 1035 (1869)

"No one who is not a native born citizen of the United States, or a citizen at the time of adoption of the Consitution, can be voted for." Sen. Johnson, The Congressional Globe, 2nd Session, 38th Congress, pg.552 (1865)

"that the President and Vice President must be native born." Rep. Clarke, Congressional Globe, 2nd session, 40th Congress. 1105 (1868)(expatriation debates).

"One of those principles is that the candidate voted for must be thirty-five years of age; another is that he must have been a citizen of the United States at the time the Constitution was adopted, or he must be a native-born citizen." Sen. Davis, 2/2/1865 reported in The presidential counts: a complete official record of the proceedings of Congress at the counting of the electoral votes in all the elections of president and vice-president of the United States; pg. 203 (1877).

"What is the qualification for the office of President? He must be a native-born citizen of the United States and thirty-five years of age. Nothing more!'' Rep. Boutwell, 1/11/69 cited in Great Debates in American History: Civil rights, part 2 Volume 8 of Great Debates in American History: From the Debates in the British Parliament on the Colonial Stamp Act (1764-1765) to the Debates in Congress at the Close of the Taft Administration (1912-1913), United States. Congress, pg. 113 (1913)

"Who does not know that every person born within the limits of the Republic is, in the language of the Constitution, a natural-born citizen." Rep. Bingham, The congressional globe, Volume 61, Part 2. pg. 2212 (1869)

"Who, sir, are citizens of the United States? First, all free persons born and domiciled within the United States – not all free withe persons, but all free persons....The fact is notorious that, at the formation of the Constitution, but few of the states made color the basis of sufferage; and all of them, by the words or construction of their constitutions, affirmed the fact that all native free persons were citizens." John Bingham, 35th Congress, Congressional Globe, 2nd Session 1859, pp 984-85

"That article of Amendment is substantially that all persons born in this land, within the jurisdiction of the United States, without regard to complexion or previous condition are citizens of the Republic." John Bingham, Congressional Globe, 2nd Session, 39th Congress, pg. 500 (1867)

"Now what is the Fourtheenth Amendment? I will read it: 'All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.' Is that a new proposition? Does that give any new force and energy to this Constitution? Does that invest any man with any right or any privledge which he had not before? It is simply the enuciation of a grand fact underlying our institutions, that all native-born persons within and subject to our jurisdiction have been citizens of the United States since our governmnet was organized under our Constitution...It resided in the general principle to which I have averted, the general principle that the Constitution of the United States invested at its adoption every native-born citizen in all the States with the general charactoristic of citizenship....And hence it will be seen that the old doctrine that all born within the United States were necessarily, by that birth, citizens, did not apply to these people [blacks] simply because they were in a state of disability." Sen. Morrill, Cong. Globe. 2st Session, 42nd Congress, pg. 2 and 3 of appendix (1871).

"The reason is this: the citizen is not responsible for the action of his government; and when his State, acting as a State, although she may act wrongfully, demands his obedience, he having been born upon her soil, she having the right to compel his obedience and to hang him if he refuses obedience, and the Federal Government not having the power to protect him from the consequences of disobedience, allegiance and protection behig reciprocal, he is justified if he obeys his State. This is no new doctrine. It is a doctrine recognized by the English law. It is a doctrine which was practiced upon and executed by the judgments of the courts in this country during your revolutionary war. It is the doctrine which Mr. Madison asserted in the case of William Smith in the First Congress of the United States." Rep. Saulsbury, The congressional globe, Volume 58, Part 2, pg. 1450 (1867)

"I propose to insert before the word "citizen" the word "natural-born;" so that it will read: "The right of natural-born citizens of the United States to vote and hold office shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude." If that amendment is adopted it will not be competent for Congress or for any State to discriminate against any person born in the United States on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude ; but the States may discriminate as against foreign-born persons. Adopt this amendment of mine and the States of California and Oregon would be able to provide that any persons born in China or Japan should not exercise political power in those States, but California or Oregon could not provide that any person born in the United States, no matter what his color might be, sbonld be deprived of the elective franchise or the right to hold office; so that the effect of this amendment would be that it would leave it with the States to declare that persons born in Asia or in Africa should not exercise political power within the several States." Senator Williams, The congressional globe, Volume 61, Part 2. pg. 938 (1869)

"I assumed that by the amendment to the Constitution abolishing slavery, the slaves being made free became citizens entitled to all the righta, civil and political, of other American citizens. I maintained that if the offspring of a man from a foreign country became a citizen and entitled to vote, because a man happened to be born in America and was black, that did not disfranchise him." Mr. Yates, The congressional globe, Volume 61, Part 2. pg. 1004 (1869)

"The Constitution in speaking of natural-born citizens, uses no affirmative language to make them such, but only recognizes and reaffirms the universal principle, common to all nations and as old as political societies themselves, thatthe people born in the country constitute the nation, and as individuals are natural members of the body-politic. If this be a true principle, and I hardly think it will be denied,it follows that every person born in the country is at the time of birth prima facie a citizen ; and he who would deny it must take upon himself the burden of proving some great dis-franchisement strong enough to override the "natural-born" right as recognized by the Constitution in terms the most simple and comprehensive, and without any reference to raceor color or any other accidental circumstance. That nativity furnishes the rule both of duty and of right as between the individual and the Government is a historical and political truthso old and so universally accepted that it is useless to prove it by authority. In every civilized country the individual is born to duties and rights—the duty of allegianceand the right to protection." Rep. Bowen. The congressional globe, Volume 61, Part 3. pg. 96 (1869)

"By the provisions of the civil rights bill all persons born within the jurisdiction of the United States, or duly naturalized, are made citizens." Mr. Mercur, The congressional globe, Volume 58, Part 2, pg. 1291 (1867)

"The Amendments to the Constitution now pending seek to make citizens of the United States of all men born in the country of lawful age...It makes citizens not only of the pet negro but also of the filthy Chinese." Sen. Johnson, The Congressional Globe, 3rd Session, 40th Congress pg. 1067 (1868)

"Every native born citizen owes loyalty to the government under whose protection he is born." Sen. Lane, (Jan. 23, 1962)

"I would procede on the basis that all persons born in the United States are citizens of the same..." Sen. Tipton, Congressional Globe, 2nd Session, 40th Congress, pg. 1078 (1668)

"in other words to assert the axiom that every man born on American soil is an American citizen, and as such heir to all the rights, privileges and immunities or all other American citizen...Simply because the Constitution recognizes every man born in the United States as possessing the rights of sovereignty...Then, now, if the States have no power to elevate any man to citizenship, and Congress has no power to do so except exclusively in the case of aliens, do it not follow that citizenship is the natural, inherent right of every man born on the soil..." Rep. Newall, Congressional Globe, 2nd Session, 39th Congress, pg. 283 (1667)


"Everyone born on the soil is a citizen, and our naturalization laws are henceforth of universal application." Rep. Kelley, Congressional Globe, 2nd Session, 39th Congress, pg. 259 (1667)

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