Rights groups denounce proposed bills to remove 'birthright citizenship'
Immigrant rights groups in Mexico and the US are up in arms over 'birthright citizenship' legislation to deny citizenship to American-born children of illegal residents.
Immigrant rights groups are voicing strong opposition to legislation being proposed in several US states to deny citizenship to American-born children of illegal immigrants.Skip to next paragraph
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In the latest salvo of a heated immigration debate, Rep. Daryle Metcalfe (R) of Pennsylvania said Wednesday that state legislators will introduce bills to eliminate automatic “birthright citizenship.” He was backed by local lawmakers from Oklahoma, Kansas, South Carolina, Georgia, and Arizona, but the group says legislators from a majority of US states are joining the effort.
Latino organizations in the US and activists in Mexico immediately responded, saying the measure would not prevent illegal immigration, but only create a permanent underclass of workers with no civil rights.
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“You’d end up creating a two-caste system in the United States of citizens and noncitizens, [the latter of whom] would be easily exploitable,” says Brent Wilkes, national executive director of the League of United Latin American Citizens in Washington. “It would be like old Europe or India, where you’re born into a family that determines what your caste is.”
'Xenophobic, supremacist' campaign
In Mexico, immigrant rights activist and former federal lawmaker José Jacques Medina urged legislators Wednesday to draft a Congressional statement against the “xenophobic, supremacist” campaign to reverse birthright citizenship.