Foreign-Born American, Yes You Can Become President! Essay

Foreign-Born American, Yes You Can Become President! Essay

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Article 2, Section 1, Clause 5 of the United States Constitution states that no person except a natural-born citizen shall be eligible to run for President of the United States. This was due to John Jay, the presiding officer of the Constitutional Convention, who wrote a letter to George Washington in 1787 arguing that the Commander-in-Chief of the United States Army should not be anyone but a natural-born American (Schneider 6). The Founders were concerned that subversive enemies could force the fledgling republic back to foreign monarchical rule. Delegates did not want the United States to suffer the same fate as Poland, which in 1772 had been partitioned among Austria, Prussia and Russia after agents of those countries bribed Polish nobles to elect a disloyal king (Schneider 6). The Founding Fathers of the United States, however, clearly state that, “all men are created equal” in the Declaration of Independence. This equality extends not only to all natural-born American citizens, but should also extend to foreign-born Americans. This foundational idea of equality contradicts the Constitution. All American citizens should have the equal and same opportunity to strive to hold the highest elected office in the United States. By looking at the role immigrants have played in American history—particularly sacrifices that have been made by foreign-born American citizens on the battlefield, easier access to candidate information through media during elections, checks in the Constitution, and modern diplomacy—we see that foreign-born American citizens are not only loyal to America, but also have the capability and passion to serve the United States as President without American citizens needing to question loyalty and intent.
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