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Should the Trump Administration Continue Denying Passports to Latino Citizens it Suspects of Fraud?

by Countable | Updated on 8.31.18

What’s the story?

  • The U.S. State Department is denying passports to a growing number of Latino Americans with birth certificates showing they were born in the United States.
  • This includes a 40-year-old who says he was born in the U.S., delivered by a midwife in southern Texas, and served in the Army, Border Patrol, and state prison system.
“I served my country. I fought for my country,” the man told the Washington Post, which broke the story.

Why are the passports being denied? What’s the State Dept. saying?

  • The Trump administration alleges that between the 1950s and 1990s, midwives and some physicians in the south Texas region provided fraudulent birth certificates to babies who were actually born in Mexico.
  • The State Dept. said applicants “who have birth certificates filed by a midwife or other birth attendant suspected of having engaged in fraudulent activities, as well as applicants who have both a U.S. and foreign birth certificate, are asked to provide additional documentation establishing they were born in the United States.”
“Individuals who are unable to demonstrate that they were born in the United States are denied issuance of a passport,” the State Dept. added.

What are Democrats saying?

  • Congressional Democrats are calling for hearings into the policy, with Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX) arguing:
“This represents an unacceptable targeting of people based on their ethnic heritage. It violates the constitution. It should be investigated by Congress in both chambers, and we should take action to stop it as soon as possible through legislation if necessary.”
  • “Americans are being held, targeted, and denied their rights because of the color of their skin,” tweeted Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez. “This is a disgrace to our democracy and a vicious assault on our community. We must make our voices heard. These families are counting on us.”

What do you think?

Do you support the State Department denying passports to citizens it suspects of fraud? Why or why not? Hit Take Action to tell your reps, then share your thoughts below.

—Josh Herman


(Photo Credit: iStock.com / Stefano Spicca)

Countable

Written by Countable

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(234)
  • Eric
    08/31/2018
    ···

    1930s Germany. 1930s Germany. 1930s Germany. How many times do you need to see it? This is the next step toward ethnic cleansing. This administration has taken the steps of creating the perception there are “others”; has taken the step of dehumanizing (calling them animals); tested limits of abuse (separating children from parents); denied due process; and now is trying to remove their citizenship. Wonder how many white Europeans are being “suspected” of not belonging here. Impeach NOW! Then vote out the enablers who stood by idly while this corrupt regime tried to destroy our democracy.

    Like (73)
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  • Linda
    Voted No
    08/31/2018
    ···

    Once a birth certificate is issued, it is the government's obligation to prove it is fraudulent, not the baby.

    Like (39)
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  • Larry
    Voted Maybe
    08/31/2018
    ···

    If there is reason to believe someone has fraudulent prerequisite documents, of course they should not issue a passport. This should be generally true, not any particular group of people. I don't think this is a recent policy. If course, it could be that a larger proportion of suspect documents may be geographically incident due to illegal immigration, but that doesn't make it selective enforcement, just historically more of a concern.

    Like (1)
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  • KyleCorley
    Voted Yes
    08/31/2018
    ···

    Need to stop the illegal activity and make them prove they aren't committing fraud.

    Like (1)
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  • John
    08/31/2018
    ···

    This is a blatant attack against US citizens. I can’t believe Congress would stand by and allow this to happen. We are a country of laws and protected by our Constitution. This should not be happening.

    Like (71)
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  • HogwartsPadfoot
    Voted No
    08/31/2018
    ···

    US citizens are entitled to US passports. This is a disgrace!

    Like (33)
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  • John
    Voted Yes
    09/05/2018
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    I experienced this type of discrimination over 50 years ago. No one cared back then because I am White and because I was 40 years ahead of my time, so why should I care now ? I support President Trump 100 percent. Let's cut the size of the corrupt FBI in half and double the size of ICE!

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  • burrkitty
    08/31/2018
    ···

    Discrimination on country of origin is UNCONSTITUTIONAL. Why are we blaming and punishing a newborn infant and not the doctor? The baby can’t fill out paperwork. This is clearly racist and a violation of due process. The burden of proof is on the government and the violation is by the DOCTOR not the child. Also, WTF happened to statutes of limitations? 40 years later for a civil paperwork issue? And then targeting the innocent? That’s absurd.

    Like (65)
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  • Karen
    08/31/2018
    ···

    Could somebody just strip the entire Trump administration of its citizenship?

    Like (49)
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  • Andy1
    08/31/2018
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    Openly and unapologetically racist, not to mention unconstitutional. Those still supporting this sorry excuse for a human deserve to drown in their own bile

    Like (43)
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  • Denise
    08/31/2018
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    They need more substantial evidence than a “suspicion”!

    Like (33)
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  • Herbert
    08/31/2018
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    If you can prove it, not “suspect” it then yes. No proof. No denial of a passport.

    Like (29)
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  • Tracy
    08/31/2018
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    The Trump administration’s denial of passport renewals to people of color or people with Hispanic surnames makes birtherism look like a joke. This is neo-Nazi crap of the highest order. Step up and fight it or step out. Who is next?

    Like (23)
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  • DrCindyBean
    08/31/2018
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    I think you need a serious reason to deny someone a passport- not merely someone suspicious- who is defining suspicious? . If there is serious reason to investigate someone that’s one thing / but someone ‘ suspicious ‘ because of color of their skin or sound of their name should not be discriminated against. 😳

    Like (16)
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  • Tinee
    Voted No
    08/31/2018
    ···

    No. The lie that of millions of people voted illegally, has been redressed in order to deny people passports.

    Like (12)
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  • Anthony4520
    08/31/2018
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    Why is it ALWAYS ABOUT RACE??!? No one suspected of fraud should have a passport! Period. There is right and there is wrong. It’s time we stopped with this race-card bs!

    Like (11)
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  • ManfromNebraska
    08/31/2018
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    YES! Stop the illegal activity.

    Like (11)
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  • Roger
    08/31/2018
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    Of course no one should be issued a passport if their documents are suspect. Until a persons documents can be verified it is just plain stupid to issue a passport!

    Like (9)
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  • JTJ
    08/31/2018
    ···

    The Washington post story was debunked by the state department. These are the same policies from the Bush and obama administrations. Stop pushing the fake news countable.

    Like (9)
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  • Pat
    Voted No
    09/01/2018
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    How in the world in our democracy can this happen? The rule of law not the rules of a dictator is what Americans expect!

    Like (8)
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  • David
    08/31/2018
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    When I go to get my passport, It is my responsibility to prove I’m a citizen. The same rule should apply no matter who you are!

    Like (7)
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  • JTK
    08/31/2018
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    A great example of how fake news gets perpetuated. Way to go countable. Before commenting you should know what is not mentioned in the summary. 1. This is not a new policy under trump. The State Department has been reviewing and denying passports to about 25% of applicants with midwife birth certificates since at least the Bush administration, including during all 8 years of the Obama administration. 2. Passport denials in 2017 under this policy we’re actually fewer that in 2015 and 2016 under Obama. Of course we never heard anything about this then. Now the media is reporting this like it’s something evil that Trump started. Finally, all that said, we might just pause for a moment and ask ourselves why the State Department might be doing this? Could it be that maybe they have better information than the critics that are suddenly condemning the policy. Personally, I’d rather trust the State Department than the media reporting this story.

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  • Jill
    08/31/2018
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    I think the only fraud is the one in the White House. If someone has a valid birth certificate, had lived, worked and paid taxes, fought for our country they ought to be considered legal citizens and not have their passports revoked, not renewed or be arrested and deported. If some had been considered a citizen since the 1940’s or even up to the 1990’s stop harassing them, they are citizens whether or not you like the color of their skin. Our Representatives need to stand up for our fellow citizens and stop this ridiculous harassment!

    Like (5)
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