Andres Martinez is the editor of the Los Angeles Times editorial board, and I believe he is the author of the unsigned editorial "Left out in '08: Arnold Schwarzenegger can't run for president because the founding fathers didn't want a foreign king." While there's no real burning need to allow naturalized citizens to serve as president, the LAT wants to tinker with the Constitution and make it happen anyway.
They inform us that past fears no longer apply:
...the founders were worried in the 18th century that our fledgling nation might go the way of Poland and be overtaken by a foreign monarchy... And now that we can all rest assured that no foreign monarch is going to move into the White House, it's long past due for this nation of immigrants to amend the Constitution to allow naturalized Americans to aspire to the presidency...
It's so wonderful to live in the modern age when past concerns no longer apply and everything is right with the world and we don't have to worry about threats to the nation. Of course, that sentence applies to the fantasy world the LAT is trying to present.
In the real world there are plenty of native-born and naturalized Americans with divided loyalties and questionable links, and while monarchies are less of an (overt) force than they were in the past, nowadays we have a close equivalent in global elites to whom rules that bind the commonfolk frequenly do not apply.
Can someone like Arnold be trusted to be president? Based on his performance to date, obviously no. He even has dual citizenship; if things go south here, he could always just move back to Austria. Those who were born in the U.S. only have the option of staying here or going into exile in a foreign country.
I am, however, all in favor of giving the L.A. Times a sandbox version of the Constitution they can tinker with to their heart's content.
Politics · Mon, 01/15/2007 - 19:11 · Importance: 1