Birthright citizenship has split the GOP presidential field. Following Donald Trump’s call for an end to birthright citizenship for the U.S.-born children of undocumented immigrants, fellow Republican presidential hopefuls Bobby Jindal, Rand Paul, Rick Santorum, Ben Carson and even longtime immigration reform advocate Lindsey Graham have said they support ending the practice. Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush have been the most vocally opposed. This didn’t used to be such a difficult issue for Republicans.
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With the VRA turning 50, this generation’s leaders should look to the past and ask themselves how they’d like to be remembered—as a generation of Andrew Johnsons that shirked its constitutional duty to fight for political equality, or as the rightful heirs to Dr. King, L.B.J., and the civil rights movement, seizing this moment to continue to build “a more perfect Union.”
CAC Chief Counsel Elizabeth Wydra explained that the “genius of the 14th amendment is that as national sentiments ebb and flow, they can’t influence who is considered worthy." Instead, she said, “the constitution places citizenship above the politics or prejudices of the day.”
The high court on Aug. 10 called upon Virginia to respond to Prieto's petition. The matter has been scheduled for the justices' conference on Sept. 28. In addition to the former corrections officials, Prieto's petition for review is supported in amicus briefs by the Constitutional Accountability Center and by professors and practitioners of psychiatry and psychology with extensive experience studying the psychological effects of imprisonment, including solitary confinement.
Now, supported by the Constitutional Accountability Center, a group of mental health experts and some former correctional officials who “have witnessed first-hand the debilitating effects of solitary confinement,” Prieto tells the high court that his case would offer a good opportunity to examine the issue.