WASHINGTON, Oct 30 - President Donald Trump is intensifying his hardline immigration rhetoric heading into the midterm elections, declaring that he wants to order the end of the constitutional right to citizenship for babies of non-citizens and unauthorised immigrants born in the United States.
Trump made the comments to �Axios on HBO� ahead of elections that he has sought to focus on his hardline immigration policies. Trump, seeking to energise his supporters and help Republicans keep control of Congress, has stoked anxiety about a caravan of Central American migrants making its way to the US -Mexico border.
He is dispatching additional troops and saying he�ll set up tent cities for asylum seekers.
Revoking birthright citizenship would spark a court fight over whether the President has the unilateral ability to change an amendment to the Constitution. The 14th Amendment guarantees that right for all children born in the US. Asked about the legality of such an executive order, Trump said, �they�re saying I can do it just with an executive order.�
He added that �we�re the only country in the world where a person comes in and has a baby, and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States.� An excerpt of the interview was posted on Axios� website on Tuesday.
The President said White House lawyers are reviewing his proposal. It�s unclear how quickly he would act on an executive order. The White House did not immediately respond to a request for additional comment.
Some experts questioned whether Trump could follow through.
Omar Jadwat, director of the Immigrants� Rights Project at the American Civil Liberties Union in New York, said Tuesday the Constitution is very clear.
�If you are born in the United States, you�re a citizen,� he said, adding that it was �outrageous that the President can think he can override constitutional guarantees by issuing an executive order, Jadwat said the President has an obligation to uphold the Constitution.
Trump can try to get Congress to pass a constitutional amendment, �but I don�t think they are anywhere close to getting that.� �Obviously, even if he did, it would be subject to court challenge,� he added. � PTI