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McCain no puede ser presidente

March 3, 2008

McCain can’t be president. No, constitutionally he can’t be president.  This should be fun when his immigration policies come into play…

Here’s the story from the brilliant Wall Street Journal Law Blog (it’s behind a pay-wall so here’s the whole thing)

If you don’t already subscribe to the journal- what the fuck are you doing? Still reading the Times? Really? Grow up- they’re doing some of the best political reporting in the country right now.
Does John McCain Have a Birthplace Problem?
Posted by Dan Slater

Here’s some LB Thursday morning triva: What do the following Republican presidential candidates have in common?

A) John McCain (2008)
B) George P. Weicker Jr. (1980)
C) George Romney (1968)
D) Barry Goldwater (1964)

PanamaCanalOK, so our headline sort of gives it away. Yes, they were all born on foreign soil, and therefore their basic constitutional qualifications for the presidency — a natural born citizen, at least 35 years of age with 14 years of residence — have been called into question. And now it’s McCain’s turn. (Here’s the NYT story.)

In 1936, McCain was born at the Coco Solo Air Base, in the then-American controlled Panama Canal Zone (pictured), to Jack McCain, a Navy officer, and Roberta McCain. If McCain wins the 2008 election, he’d be the first American to take the presidential oath who has an official birthplace outside the 50 states.

“There are powerful arguments that Senator McCain or anyone else in this position is constitutionally qualified, but there is certainly no precedent,” said Sarah H. Duggin, an associate professor of law at Catholic University. “It is not a slam-dunk situation.”

According to the Times story, McCain’s campaign recently asked Gibson Dunn’s Ted Olson to prepare a detailed legal analysis. “I don’t have much doubt about it,” Olson told the Times, adding that he still needed to finish his research.

Senator Lindsey Graham, the South Carolina Republican, was a bit more definitive, “He was posted there on orders from the United States government,” Graham said of McCain’s father. “If that becomes a problem, we need to tell every military family that your kid can’t be president if they take an overseas assignment.”

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