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house Bill H.R. 178

If You Join A Terrorist Organization, Should The U.S. Revoke Your Citizenship?

Argument in favor

Americans who join a foreign terrorist organization should not be entitled to the rights and benefits that come with U.S. citizenship. This bill would ensure that these people cannot re-enter the United States to carry out attacks on domestic targets.

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01/14/2016
If you join a terrorist organization, then you are committing treason.
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Sid's Opinion
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04/03/2016
This is a no brainer. Plus it will keep them from coming back here with mal intent.
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Mark's Opinion
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03/17/2016
If you choose terror over humanity you have only one homeland....Hell.
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Argument opposed

The key to preventing Americans from joining foreign terrorist organizations is to make it difficult for them to do so. Revoking the U.S. citizenship of people who have already joined won't help — not to mention that this seems like a relatively small problem.

asomr1's Opinion
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05/17/2015
Congress has no power under the Constitution to revoke a person's U.S. citizenship unless he voluntarily relinquishes it. In particular, citizenship may not be revoked as a consequence of voting in a foreign election.
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Loraki's Opinion
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12/21/2016
I would vote YEA, if the bill ONLY concerned American citizens who go join our foreign enemies, such as ISIS, to fight against the United States and/or our allies. But I am VERY concerned about the likelihood of the provisions of such a bill being used against American citizens who stage armed or unarmed protests against actions by our own government. Even if those protesters are non-violent, we've seen the FBI send in agents provocateurs to turn public opinion against the protesters. The FBI has behaved treacherously and even murdered American citizens, denying them the right of due process! Stripping someone of their citizenship, life, or freedom should never take place without due process! Of course, IMO, that doesn't apply to combatants on the battlefield, who are traitors who have switched their allegiance and are trying to kill Americans on behalf of some foreign government or organization or individual!
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Dan's Opinion
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04/30/2015
What about those in domestic terrorist groups? Not all terrorists are foreign.
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      Committee on Foreign Affairs
      Oversight and Investigations
      Committee on the Judiciary
      Immigration and Citizenship
    IntroducedJanuary 6th, 2015

What is House Bill H.R. 178?

H.R. 178 aims to add the following to the list of grounds that a U.S. citizen can lose his or her U.S. citizenship:

  • Taking an oath or making a declaration of allegiance to a foreign terrorist organization after their eighteenth birthday;

  • Entering or serving in the armed forces of a foreign state that harbors a foreign terrorist organization;

  • Accepting or serving in a position within a foreign terrorist organization after turning 18, where the organization requires an oath or declaration of allegiance;

  • Accepting or serving in a position within a foreign terrorist organization that involves the conscious participation in hostilities against U.S. military or civilian personnel.


The bill also directs the U.S. State Department and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to revoke any previously issued passports from any individual engaging in terrorist activities.

Impact

U.S. citizens involved in things deemed by the administration to be "foreign terrorist activities," their families, the Department of State, and the Department of Homeland Security.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 178

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

Of Note:

An unprecedented number of people outside of the U.S. have been joining up with terrorist networks like ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and Syria) and ANL (Al-Nusra Front). Approximately 13,000 foreign fighters from 80 countries are believed to be fighting on the side of terrorist organizations like ISIS and ANL, with an estimated 100 from the United States.


At a United Nations summit in September 2014, member states expressed the urgency to prevent the travel and support for foreign terrorist fighters. The UN Security Council asserted that all states must take measures to prohibit the travel to and financing of terrorism training.


In Depth:

H.R. 178 amends the section in the Immigration and Nationality Act that lists the grounds for which a U.S. citizen can be denaturalized, adding the aforementioned grounds to the list. The bill also amends the Passport Act of 1926, providing increased mechanisms for the Department of State and DHS when it comes to the revocation of U.S. passports from such individuals.



Media:

Sponsoring Rep. Steve Womack (R-AR) Press Release

United Nations

The Ripon Advance

(Photo Credit: Flickr user tsevis)

AKA

Terrorist Denaturalization and Passport Revocation Act

Official Title

To amend section 349(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act to add certain acts of allegiance to a foreign terrorist organization to the list of acts for which nationals of the United States lose nationality, and for other purposes.

    Congress has no power under the Constitution to revoke a person's U.S. citizenship unless he voluntarily relinquishes it. In particular, citizenship may not be revoked as a consequence of voting in a foreign election.
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    I would vote YEA, if the bill ONLY concerned American citizens who go join our foreign enemies, such as ISIS, to fight against the United States and/or our allies. But I am VERY concerned about the likelihood of the provisions of such a bill being used against American citizens who stage armed or unarmed protests against actions by our own government. Even if those protesters are non-violent, we've seen the FBI send in agents provocateurs to turn public opinion against the protesters. The FBI has behaved treacherously and even murdered American citizens, denying them the right of due process! Stripping someone of their citizenship, life, or freedom should never take place without due process! Of course, IMO, that doesn't apply to combatants on the battlefield, who are traitors who have switched their allegiance and are trying to kill Americans on behalf of some foreign government or organization or individual!
    Like (10)
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    What about those in domestic terrorist groups? Not all terrorists are foreign.
    Like (9)
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    The is a terrifying idea. It allows the executive branch to strip citizenship (and constitutional protections) from whomever it chooses by executive order.
    Like (5)
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    Who gets to determine if the group you belong to is a "terrorist" organization? Some see Greenpeace and Planned Parenthood as a terrorist organization while others see militias and the KKK as a terrorist organization. I think the political will to define terrorism in a manner by some politicians to get their way in various issues is a way too likely to go down this road.
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    If you join a terrorist organization, then you are committing treason.
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    Gee, can't see this being misused at all.
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    I can't see this being misused at all, who gets to decide on what's considered a "terrorist organization". That's too much power for the executive branch to have.
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    I think that's the stupidest thing I've ever heard. Not only find them but imprison them or basically end there lives. I have a strong opinion about terrorism.
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    This is a no brainer. Plus it will keep them from coming back here with mal intent.
    Like (2)
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    If you choose terror over humanity you have only one homeland....Hell.
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    This isn't much of a deterrent and has too much potential of being expanded to include people we now do not consider to be terrorists.
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    What a stupid idea, that only repulsicans could come up with. If we revoke their citizenship, who is going to take them? Oh, I don't know, maybe terrorist organizations and state sponsors of terrorism? Sure, let's do their recruiting for them
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    This is a way to avoid having to try Americans in a US court of law with all the the rights guaranteed to them. There are only 100 suspected Americans of having joined a foreign terrorist organizations. Seems like overkill when we have more problems with domestic right wing terrorists.
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    McCarthyism!
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    This is a no-brained! Swearing allegiance to a terrorist organization is Treason.
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    And be sent to live in the country you sided with against the US
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    Freedom of assembly. You can join whatever group you want, even if it is a terrorist group. Law wnforcement can hurt you in other ways.
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    Yeah no question
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    At that point you are an enemy of the state
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