I have a question to the Americans in the room
Why does it matter that the US president must be born in the US?
To me, it makes no sense. In a country that is built on immigration, surely a first generation immigrant is just as capable of being the US president as anyone else? Wouldn't a requirement that the President be a citizen be fairer?
I'm not American, but I know what you're talking about and I thought of the exact same thing when I first heard of it.
I think that the main reason is probably that whoever came up with that rule (founding fathers? I'm not sure.) wanted to make sure that whoever is running has a good knowledge of the political system, of the United States' position on the international stage and of its relations. Also, they probably want the person to have grown up learning their presidents and knowing the constitution and history really well; which is a fair thing to look for in a president.
There might also be a dual-nationality thing about 'loyalty' and all that, but I'm not too sure.
But why this STILL doesn't make much sense to me because many people who imigrate are very educated and intelligent people who have credentials in a vast majority of fields, and some of these people have gotten the same education as american-born children because of moving to the country at a young age. Some Americans themselves don't know much about politics and don't even vote (I said some).
But I think that as people are oppening up to each other and as Nerdfighteria takes over the world, eventually this rule may change.
As an American I can inform you that the answer is quite simply a distrust of foreigners.
You gotta remember this country was started after a revolution to get a foreign based government off our backs. When we declared independence we became very introverted. We still don't trust or like foreigners, immigration pisses everyone off even if we claim to love it. I'm pretty sure we're not just mad at the Mexicans, they're just the biggest problem. I don't think we even like white foreigners.
That's actually still a problem today, and not just in the USA. You have extremely educated and proffesional people who come to upper class countries for better jobs, and then their degrees don't count anymore because of the big gap. Some of them have to redo a few courses (which is fair enough because it fills the gaps that might exist between their education and the education of ingeneers or doctors or teachers who were educated in whatever country they're in, and ultimately helps them compete for jobs and so forth), but others have to redo their whole college/university education! And even then, a lot of times finding a job is still a pain because of the mistrust of foreigners, like you said. These people who were doctors in Côte d'Ivoire, Lebannon or Pakistan or wherever they're from are now dealing with the rudest customers at IGA or 7-11, or acting as substitutes.
It isn't that he has to be born in the US he just has to be a natural born citizen. He could be born of US citizens outside the us such as the children of diplomats and soldiers.
in the United States Constitution for election to the office of President or Vice President. This requirement was an attempt to allay concerns that foreign aristocrats might immigrate to the new nation and use their wealth and influence to impose a monarchy.
As cut and pasted from wikipedia.
It seems quite strange to me too - our current Prime Minister and Opposition Leader were both born overseas. They're both fairly terrible, but that's not the result of where they were born.
Where are you from Trev? It makes sense tyo me. I suppose It may affect one person in a billion. Maybe Arnald the Govenator. He is the only foreigner who possibly may have had a chance but not anymore.
It actually makes a lot of sense. Think about it this way, if you move from one state to another, odds are you are still going to root for the sports teams from your state of origin not the original state. In the same way if I lived in a different country and moved to the US I would most likely still love my country of origin. However it is far more complex. If the president has such a heavy anchoring biased toward a country they will be more likely to give that country special privileges and support from the US, no matter the diplomatic back lash. The same is true if that person was run out of there home country. They will be likely to use military action against that country no matter what the implications of that action are. The president of the US should have one bias, to the US. The presidents only factor of decision should be "Will this benefit the American people?"
Yes, but logically, if they seek out the role of American President, they know what the job entails, and they know that the job involves working for the benefit of the American people. That's what the oath is about. It makes more sense that it should be based on citizenship, otherwise you are essentially saying that people who are not born in the US are not as good leaders.
By that logic all presidents do their job well, which is pretty untrue. I'm not saying I support the law, but it's not unreasonable to assume we might get a president who shows some degree of favoritism for their country of origin.
It does not matter what they intend to do or what they think they will do. Everyone has an unbreakable anchoring bias and the most powerful of biases is origin. Childhood experiences shape us more than we can ever know as well as our origin country. Weather the person knows that they are being bias or is oblivious the bias is still preset.
I think that its unfair to prejudge someone. You are effectively saying that it would be impossible for them to ever be capable of being impartial. That's a negative assumption. I would argue that it's not for the state to make that judgement ahead of time. If the state accepts that an individual born in another country can become an American citizen, and be loyal to the country enough to live in its borders and pay respect to its laws etc, I see no reason why it should not allow them to become President. While I agree with you that there is an anchoring bias etc from birth, the issue I have with your argument is that it presumes that a person born elsewhere is incapable of seeing past that bias. The state doesn't have the right to prejudge someone like that. Unless its physically impossible, then the state should not have that kind of impact on question like this.
I do not think it is unfair at all. I am not claiming that a person not born in american can not be a good leader. I am claiming that the anchoring bias would effect the leadership of that person. The job of the state is actually to judge before knowing. That is why no felon can serve in executive office and only those above 35 can be president. By your logic there can be no prerequisists for any public office. You're logic implies that anyone at any time is fit to serve as the leader of america. Also anchoring bias is a perfect reason for someone not to be president. Lets say the person who becomes president grew up in Russia. They were forced to flee Russia due to some circumstance and spend the rest of their lives with a deep hatred of Russia. Once they are president it is reasonable to assume that the person is going to use his power to put sanctions on Russia and quite possibly attack them. The anchoring bias formed as a child will effect the leadership of that person and will then effect the people of america. The president should want to do what will best serve the intrestests of america, that is it. I am not saying that a person born in america is automatically fit to be president, i am saying that a person born outside of america has too strong an anchoring bias to lead.