In a survey conducted and published by one of the top political blogs in the nation, Hot Air, Gov. Bobby Jindal, R-La., and U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., are the top choices of respondents for Mitt Romney’s running mate in the 2012 presidential election.
The survey, published Saturday, shows Jindal topping the list with 594 votes, with Rubio coming in second with 509 votes.
Other top choices include Allen West, Paul Ryan, Condoleeza Rice, and Tim Pawlenty.
Romney reportedly has been vetting several other possibilities that did not make the list, such as Gov. Nikki Haley, R-S.C. The latest reports indicate that Romney is currently vetting one who did make the list but is fourth from last in the Hot Air poll, Gov. Bob McDonnell, R-Va.
The popularity of Jindal and Rubio has been problematic for many conservatives who otherwise support both in their present roles. Neither Jindal nor Rubio, according to many conservative Constitutional scholars, meet the standard set by the Framers that a president must be a “natural born citizen.”
This standard also applies to vice presidential candidates given that in the event that the president should be rendered unable to fulfill his duties, the vice president is automatically the first in line for the presidency.
Jindal was born to citizens of India six months after they immigrated to the United States. Rubio’s parents were Cuban citizens who had immigrated to the United States at the time of his birth. The parents of neither had become U.S. citizens at the time the two were born.
According to those scholars who are known as ‘strict constructionists,’ that is, they believe that the methodology for interpreting the Constitution must begin with the original intent of the Framers, the term “natural born citizen” as it applies to the qualifications for the presidency refers specifically to a person who was born on U.S. soil to parents who were U.S. citizens at the time of his or her birth.
The commonly accepted definition of “natural born citizen” at the time the Constitutional was written was that of a widely used textbook in law schools in the U.S. and Europe — Vattel’s “The Laws of Nations.” Law school students at the time were taught that “natural born citizen” is more than merely being born on U.S. soil. The person’s parents, particularly the father, had to be citizens of the country where the child was born.
Critics have charged that the U.S. Supreme Court never ruled on the issue, and thus, there is no definitive legal precedent that establishes the meaning of the term. But in fact, the Court has, indeed, spelled out the meaning of “natural born citizen” in no less than six court cases.
Those cases are as follows:
–Venus, 12 U.S. 8 Cranch 253 253 (1814).
–Shanks v DuPont, 28 U.S. 3 Pet. 242 242 (1830).
–Dred Scott v Sandford, 60 U.S. 393 (1857).
–Minor v Happersett, 88 U.S. 162 (1875).
–United States v Wong Kim Ark, 169 U.S. 649 (1898).
–Perkins v. Elg, 307 U.S. 325 (1939).
And if there were any doubt that “natural born citizen” refers specifically to individuals born to parents who are U.S citizens at the time of their birth, those doubts should be quickly dispelled by the mere fact that on numerous occasions, specifically in 1975, 1977, 2003, 2004, 2005, and 2008, members of Congress have attempted to amend the Constitution to remove the requirement of “natural born citizen” specifically so that persons in the same category with Barack Obama, Marco Rubio, and Bobby Jindal could be eligible.
Each time such efforts failed.
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