That Neopolitan just happens to be Obamaballotchallenge.com’s Florida Project Manager
This isn’t your Kenyan-born father’s birther suit.
A Naples man is taking a lead role in an effort to have President Barack Obama declared ineligible for the presidency based on his lineage.
But unlike the so-called birthers, who’ve been trying to prove the president wasn’t born in the U.S., Sam Sewell doesn’t focus on where Obama was born. For that matter, he doesn’t really focus on Obama.
The crux of the argument made by Sewell and others is that Article II of the U.S. Constitution requires the president to be a “natural born” U.S. citizen. While the Constitution doesn’t define the term “natural born citizen,” Sewell forwards the case that U.S. immigration authorities and others have said it as a person with two parents who are citizens of the United States.
Since Obama’s father was Kenyan, the president is not a natural born citizen, Sewell contends. “My position is that if he was born on the Capitol steps he would still not be eligible, because he only had one American parent,” said Sewell, Florida coordinator for ObamaBallotChallenge.com.
The theory has had a hard time gaining traction, in part because it could eliminate potential Republican candidates for president as well, Sewell believes. Neither Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida nor Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, both considered raising stars in the party, would qualify as natural born citizens under the criteria Sewell sets out.
“I’m trying not to make it relevant just to Mr. Obama,” Sewell says. “My position is it is more of a Constitutional issue.”
To bolster that position, Sewell cites case law, including Supreme Court cases drawing distinctions between “native citizens” and “natural born citizens,” regulations of both the immigration and state departments and even the Federalist Papers written in support of the U.S. Constitution at its drafting.
He has helped raise money for a lawsuit filed in state court in Tallahassee by Michael Voeltz seeking to have Obama declared ineligible for the Florida ballot later this year. There are similar lawsuits in 20 states, said Sewell, who with his wife, Bunny, runs a counseling service in Naples.
Ironically, in 2008 Democrats in the U.S. Senate sponsored and passed a resolution stating that John McCain, who was born on a military base outside the United States, was eligible to run for president. It made multiple references to his American parents. “What’s interesting here is that Sen. (Patrick) Leahy, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary (Committee), confirms that a “natural born citizen” is the child of American citizen parents. Parents _ that’s two. That’s both parents,” Sewell writes in his analysis of the issue. Then-U.S. Sen. Barack Obama co-sponsored that Senate resolution.
Trying to make the case that this is a Constitutional matter, not a political one, is difficult, Sewell says. Obama supporters dismiss the argument that their man isn’t qualified to be president. Obama opponents don’t want to hear anything that doesn’t target him specifically. “People keep misunderstanding my intentions. The Constitution has been under attack for a long time. You can’t believe how irate the Marco Rubio fans are,” Sewell said.
Sewell, a member of Mensa, is smart enough to know others will take issue with his arguments. That’s why cases like the one filed in Tallahassee are important, to get a court, preferably the Supreme Court, to rule directly on the points.
“All of these (interpretations) are the opinions of analysts. This is not a settled issue at all,” he said.
Only a natural born Citizen can legally be President of the USA. ”Obama” is not either.
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