what was the original intent of the Natural Born Citizen clause. We are blessed with having the framers thoughts recorded for posterity. And we are doubly blessed that these records are few but in concert as to their intent.
John Jay wrote George Washington saying, "Permit me to hint whether it would not be wise and seasonable to provide a strong check to the admission of foreigners into the administration of our national government; and to declare expressly that the command in chief of the American army shall not be given to, nor devolve on any but a natural born citizen."
Alexander Hamilton raises a very profound question as to influence of foreigners in our Presidency. “Nothing was more to be desired than that every practicable obstacle should be opposed to cabal, intrigue, and corruption. These most deadly adversaries of republican government might naturally have been expected to make their approaches from more than one querter, but chiefly from the desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils. How could they better gratify this, than by raising a creature of their own to the chief magistracy of the Union?”
Clearly the NBC clause was established to prevent foreigners and foreign influence from taking command of America’s armed forces!
So the question is who is a foreigner? The three most popular dictionaries define a foreigner as one whose allegiance is owed to a foreign country.
MerriamWebster Dictionary - “a person belonging to or owing allegiance to a foreign country.”
Oxford English Dictionary – “One who is a subject of another country than that in which he resides. A resident foreign in origin and not naturalized, whose allegiance is thus due to a foreign state.”
Blacks Law Dictionary - “A person who is not a citizen or subject of the state or country in which mention is made, or any one owing allegiance to a foreign state or sovereign”
So the Framers only wanted a person to be President if they had no foreign allegiances. This seems to be the same sentiment about 80 years later when Congress was adopting the Civil Rights Act and 14th Amendment.
“I find no fault with the introductory clause, which is simply declaratory of what is written in the Constitution, that every human being born within the jurisdiction of the United States of parents not owing allegiance to any foreign sovereignty is, in the language of your Constitution itself, a natural born citizen; but, sir, I may be allowed to say further, that I deny that the Congress of the United States ever had the power or color of power to say that any man born within the jurisdiction of the United States, and not owing a foreign allegiance, is not and shall not be a citizen of the United States.” John A. Bingham, (R-Ohio) US Congressman, Architect of Section 1 of the 14th Amendment, March 9, 1866
What is so hard to understand, a natural born citizen is one who is born not owing allegiance to any country but the United States of America?