General Question

colog's avatar

Can John McCain, born outside the 50 United States in the Panama Canal Zone, hold the office of President?

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17 Answers

vanguardian's avatar

He was born on US Military soil. His father was an Admiral there. He spent 5 years as a POW being tortured in V.N.

He will not have an issue.


squirbel's avatar

This is America. Where you are born carries little weight in whether or not you are capable of leading a nation. Believing that it does disrupts the open nature of this young country. It is a melting pot, a place to immigrate into. You prove yourself as a citizen and serve in its army, and take up office as a politician… only to be questioned on your worthiness to lead? How un-american!

By the way, I support Obama. Perhaps we should question his ability just because a large part of his childhood was spent off the mainland and in other countries?

Les's avatar

@squirbel: Yes, but in order to be the President, you have to be a natural born citizen. It is a job requirement. So (thankfully) Arnold could never be president. As Vanquardian says, McCain qualifies because he was born in th US (on US soil).

squirbel's avatar

Thanks for the correction. I did not know that specific requirement. I do however, still believe that if one has spent his life proving to be loyal to America, he should be eligible. Perhaps there will be a precedent one day and that law will be amended.

sferik's avatar

The law you’re referring to is the Constitution, Section 1, Article II:
“No Person except a natural born Citizen…shall be eligible to the Office of President.”

It’s a requirement just as rigid as age requirement (minimum 35 years).

Phil's avatar

@squirbel: doubt it

schuh61's avatar

That law will never be changed

squirbel's avatar

The more you point out that it cannot, the greater is my desire for it to happen. :)

Spargett's avatar

Being tortured in a foreign country has nothing to do with meeting naturally born stipulations.

Poser's avatar

Don’t know why it should matter. We’ve thrown out the rest of the Constitution.

mcw's avatar

As much as I would like to see mccain hit a major speedbump in his campaign so that Huckabee might have some chance, this issue of his birth should not be that speedbump. My husband is military and some day we’ll have a child. And there is a possibility it could happen overseas. It infuriates me that it is even a question of whether he is eligible. How dare these people grab at such petty straws.

Spargett's avatar


I belive that is the United States Constitution that those people dare grab petty straws at. But lets be honest, now-a-days the constitution is just something that’s in the way of conservative/corporate motive.

Kinda reminds me of when Joseph Smith (Mormon Founder) ran for president just so he could throw out the US Constitution and replace with the Book of Mormon. “God Bless an American Religious Dictatorship”.

Poser's avatar

@Spargett—Don’t make the mistake of thinking that only conservative politicians are enemies of the constitution.

Spargett's avatar


I know that’s a generalization, and there are exceptions to everything, but I don’t think anyone is interesting me in including a huge list of names and where each group specifically stands on each side of the fence.

In any case, generalizations are based from a factual origin. i.e. “White people can’t dance”. Just because there are some that can, doesn’t mean that the general statement is untrue. I’d say its much more truth than fiction. Just as my original comment was.

Poser's avatar

@Spargett—Your statements are both insulting and untrue. Simply substitute any minority for “white people” and any other activity for “dance,” and you’ve got an insulting racial slur. Just because you generalize about a group which is currently a popular target (be it white people or conservatives) doesn’t make it any less insulting or wrong.

gooch's avatar

I was under the impression that if your parents were U.S. citizens you also were “considered” native born. I have a cousin who was born in Germany while her father was stationed there and she has a citizenship from the U.S.

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