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Immigration Law

No 14th Am. Birthright Citizenship for American Samoans: CADC

"Appellants are individuals born in the United States territory of American Samoa. Statutorily deemed “non-citizen nationals” at birth, they argue the Fourteenth Amendment’s Citizenship Clause affords them citizenship by dint of birthright. They are opposed not merely by the United States but by the democratically elected government of the American Samoan people. We sympathize with Appellants’ individual plights, apparently more freighted with duty and sacrifice than benefits and privilege, but the Citizenship Clause is textually ambiguous as to whether “in the United States” encompasses America’s unincorporated territories and we hold it “impractical and anomalous,” see Reid v. Covert, 354 U.S. 1, 75 (1957), to impose citizenship by judicial fiat—where doing so requires us to override the democratic prerogatives of the American Samoan people themselves. The judgment of the district court is affirmed; the Citizenship Clause does not extend birthright citizenship to those born in American Samoa." - Tuaua v. USA, June 5, 2015.