American Samoa's Hunkin says US Congress should determine birthright citizenship

Updated at 7:35 am on 10 November 2012

The re-elected American Samoa US Congressman Faleomavaega Eni Hunkin says it is the US Congress, not the courts, that should determine whether birthright citizenship should extend to American Samoa.

Faleomavaega says the constitution vests in Congress plenary authority over the territories of the United States.

He says Congress has authority over naturalisation policy, including whether or not citizenship should be extended to nationals.

He says the only mechanism for extending birthright citizenship geographically has been by act of Congress.

He says American Samoa has a mechanism for seeking citizenship if that is the will of its people and that is by seeking Congress to enact legislation extending birthright citizenship to the territory.

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