Republican presidential candidate and Miami Mayor Francis Suarez has called the arguments by some of his presidential rivals to end American birthright citizenship ‘really idiotic,’ and suggested he might not have become a U.S. citizen without the existence of the 14th Amendment.
‘Our Founding Fathers decided that people born here were immediately citizens. Cracking open the Constitution to eliminate that right seems really idiotic,’ Suarez, whose parents were both immigrants from Cuba, told the Daily Caller last week.
‘My parents both came here to escape communism. They came legally, but I became a citizen because I was born here. We need to close our borders to illegal immigration not open up the Constitution. One out of every five Americans is Hispanic. We can get their votes, but this isn’t a way to do it,’ he added.
The 14th Amendment, which was ratified in July 1868, grants citizenship to anyone ‘born or naturalized in the United States,’ and has become a point of contention amid the migrant crisis at the U.S. border with Mexico.
Former President Donald Trump first promised to end birthright citizenship in 2018 in response to massive migrant caravans made up of largely Central and South Americans heading to the border by traversing through Mexico. He ultimately didn’t follow through, but vowed in May to do so again if elected to another term.
A number of other Republican presidential candidates have also signaled they would look to end certain aspects of birthright citizenship, including former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, businessman Vivek Ramaswamy, and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson has sided with Suarez, telling the Daily Caller last week that such vows to end birthright citizenship through executive order were ’empty promises’ and ‘disrespectful to our Constitution.’