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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Archbishop nails Trump on birthright issue

Archbishop Charles Chaput
Archbishop Charles Chaput

The leader of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia on Tuesday attacked GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump’s call for ending automatic citizenship for children born to immigrants living illegally in the U.S., saying the idea “plays on our worst fears and resentments.”

“Some in public life — notably, but not only, Donald Trump — have called for an end to birthright citizenship,” Archbishop Charles Chaput said in remarks prepared for a church forum that was part of the run-up of activities to a visit by Pope Francis. “This is a profoundly bad idea.”

The archbishop said he hoped immigration would be a key part of the discussions during the Vatican-sponsored World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia and the pope’s appearance during the closing weekend.

The pope has decried what he has called the “inhuman” conditions facing migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border, and encouraged frontier communities to not judge people by stereotypes but rather welcome migrants and work to end discrimination.

Without at first mentioning Trump by name, Chaput began his remarks by declaring: “At least one of our presidential candidates has already made the national immigration debate ugly with a great deal of belligerent bombast.”

Trump has proposed the mass deportation of millions of immigrants living in the U.S. illegally, as well as their American-born children.

“They’re illegal,” he said of the children.

U.S.-born children of all immigrants, including those living in the U.S. illegally, have been automatically considered American citizens since the adoption of the Constitution’s 14th Amendment in 1868. Repeal of the citizenship clause would require the votes of two-thirds of both houses of Congress and support from three-fourths of the nation’s state legislatures. Some conservatives, however, believe that the granting of citizenship in such cases could be changed without amending the Constitution.

Chaput, whose archdiocese has about 1.4 million parishioners, urged Congress to give those living in the U.S. illegally “an honest, attainable chance at citizenship.”

He also said the nation should stop detaining young mothers with children who are fleeing violence in Central America.

“These families pose no threat to anyone,” he said. “Detaining them is inhumane.”

Birthright citizenship is not only a constitutional right, it also ensures that children don’t become stateless or part of a chronic underclass, he said.

Of Trump’s call to end it, he said: “It plays on our worst fears and resentments. And it undermines one of the pillars of the American founding and national identity.”

He also directed some criticism at the Democratic administration, noting the deportation rate had hit a record under President Barack Obama.

“This brutally affects immigrant families — especially those with children who are U.S. citizens,” he said.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan, New York’s archbishop, has also been openly critical of Trump. In an opinion piece in July, the onetime religious history professor wrote that if he were back in the classroom, he’d “roll out my ‘Trump’ card'” to show skeptical students that organized opposition to immigrants was still alive and well.

Copyright © 2015 Capitol Hill Blue

Copyright  © 2015 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved

6 thoughts on “Archbishop nails Trump on birthright issue”

  1. As I see it, the REAL problem in all this is a notoriously slow (and horribly bureaucratic) path to residency and eventual citizenship for people who simply want a better life for themselves and their families.

    Rather than spending tens of billions building more walls, those resources might be better spent in hiring more workers to streamline the immigration path, running background checks, and issuing temporary visas to allow those persons (who clearly have no criminal records) a chance to temporarily settle in the USA under the care of a US. Citizen acting as their sponsor.

    This way, these people could actually get a job and PAY THEIR SHARE OF TAXES to offset their presence while they are waiting for their permanent status documents to work their way through the system.

    Unlike our European friends, the USA still has LOTS of room in our country for these folks. I say, let’s streamline the path to residency and/or citizenship for those persons without a criminal record, are willing to work and who also wish to permanently settle in the USA.

    Don’t deport them. PUT THEM ON THE TAX ROLLS!

  2. Does anyone know the religion of most illegal immigrants? Catholic! I guess tithes would be down if those who are fleeing their poor country in the hopes of free handouts! That and their might be a short supply of little boys who can’t speak out against them.

  3. Did you know that at a Dreamer’s convention [NYT] mentors counseled them that they could have everything they wanted for themselves, and also for all the other illegals if they asked Republicans, “Do you ever want to see the inside of the White House Again?” This is a threat and they know they have the voting numbers to carry it out. This means that no other citizens vote will matter not even our veterans who put them and the rest of us first before themselves and families and which the lyrics “Grenade” are factual. Did you know that if they managed to survive 2 wars and many deployments some would die while waiting for treatment from VA? The evening news said it was against the law for them to have to wait for treatment. Why does not anyone voice concern about this inhumane, abusive treatment?

  4. Did you know USA and Canada are the only countries left to have birthright citizenship and Canada only deals with less than 500 A YR while USA has around 400,000 and most are raised on welfare and can at age 21 bring in an entire village of Mexicans??? [see Bloomberg birthright citizenship Canada/USA]

  5. The pope does not live here. How about then none us follow the law. I wonder what he would say then? Come to this country when their are no laws and he would not even leave with his life. Islam is here to you know. Does he really think we are better off to turn into a third world country. He is crazy. should be looking into the churches problems that they so secretly kept, while they raped children. he should go to MEXICO and talk to them about their immigration laws, long before he preaches to us. We have the most generous immigration in the world. We immigrate more then ALL other nations COMBINED. Why is he not talking to these countries? Why because the rich are pulling every thing they can to take Trump down. Politics and church our separate for a reason. If we follow religion we will be like the MIDDLE EAST where the religion rules everything. No thank you, I am a Christian, just so you know the BIBLE DOES NOT CHANGE just because you want it to. GAYS are now OK with the church. Tell GOD, if you get to see him why you followed man’s law instead of his.

  6. Yea? Then how about we have the Catholic Church pay for the medical and school bills for the “Anchor Babies” instead of putting it on the backs of the American taxpayers! So according to the priest we should welcome the idea of supporting children who are not a part of our society?

    You pay the bill and then you will see how fast you will sell the gold in the Vatican to cover the cost of illegals!!!

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