John McCain: The arguments against

I don’t see this specific question addressed in this thread and that’s getting long enough to be unwieldy.

Ignore the political likelihood of the issue, and pretend that the Supreme Court has decided to take the case of whether John McCain is a natural-born citizen.

What would be the legal arguments of those opposing him?

Presumably they would have to do more than just say that the issue isn’t settled and that it hasn’t been addressed. The Court would want a positive argument made as well. It would also want a reason to exclude the statutes that grant children of Americans born in the Canal Zone citizenship. How would you go about doing that?

Bonus question: how would this argument change if somebody else born elsewhere, say on a military base in Korea, were to run?

A military base in Korea is not United States soil and is not under governmental administration of the United States. It’s governed under the laws of the Republic of Korea. Military personnel on the base are subject to both the UCMJ and Korean law.

Persons born on the base (or anywhere else in Korea) to an American citizen, however, are American citizens at birth.

It’s a good thing John McCain wasn’t born on a military base in Korea, then.

(It was the naval base in the Panama Canal Zone.)

I’m not following. The answer from Monty had to do with the hypothetical posed by Exapno. But Monty’s answer doesn’t indicate that John McCain would be ineligible for the office of President under the hypothetical situation. :confused:

My question is really for a lawyer and Monty doesn’t address it.

You’re standing in front of the Supreme Court, brief in hand. You’ve been hired by John McCain’s opponent to put him out of the race by arguing that he’s not a natural born citizen.

What do you say?

*Playing Devil’s Advocate

The definition of a “natural born citizen” should use the plain language of the term meaning born naturally, or physically within the confines of the United States. The canal zone, or an overseas military base is not within the U.S.

It may be unfair to children of service people, but unfair does not = unconstitutional. It is up to Congress to pass an amendment to fix this, but as of now McCain is screwed.

*Devil’s Advocate off

I am not a lawyer.
Wikipedia has this argument:

I tried to summarize it accurately. There’s more in the Wikipedia article.

My bad. I missed Expano’s hypothetical in the OP and thought Monty was talking about Sen. McCain.