Page images
PDF
EPUB

1

European states, for it is practically debarred from collecting taxes on land and incomes; nor can it, like the German Empire, enjoy the fruits of these direct taxes by way of contributions from the federated states.

In view of these and other incapacities incident to our peculiar government, especially its admirable incapacity for arbitrary rule, it is not surprising that the Constitution should be the law throughout the United States, and could it be maintained that our new possessions are not in the United States, we would have no right to govern them as we do, for the Supreme Court has declared: “By the Constitu“tion a government is ordained and established 'for “the United States of America,' and not for countries “outside of their limits.” 2

1 See infra, p. 85. 2 Ross's Case, 140 U. S. 453, 464.

CHAPTER III

THE APPLICATION OF THE CONSTITU

TION IN THE PHILIPPINES

The considered arguments against the Constitution for the Philippines affect the sanction of law, but they are really arguments of inconvenience. They rest upon the assumed inexpediency, if not the impossibility, of constitutional government rather than upon approved legal principles. The assumption cannot be disproved by reciting opinions of the Supreme Court, for it suggests a question of fact. It will appear, however, that our constitutional powers are adequate, and that our constitutional obligations, chiefly regarding citizenship and civil rights, slavery, commerce, and taxation, are not presumptively unendurable.

The Constitution permits the pacification of the Philippines by any method which public opinion should tolerate. Surely a government that suppressed the revolt of eleven States has constitutional power to deal with any insurrection in federal territory; and when reconstruction shall follow pacification, a government that “reconstructed” the South after the Civil War cannot decently complain of lack of power in the Philippines. Furthermore, the Con

1

stitution permits the President to administer the islands after a fashion until Congress shall exert its powers," and does not hamper Congress in providing a government suited to their needs.2

STATUS OF PERSONS

Natural-Born Citizens

All

persons born in the Philippines after annexation, and subject to our jurisdiction are citizens of the United States; though, as we shall see, they are not members of the voting body of the republic.

This proposition is denied not only on the ground, already noted, that the Constitution is wholly ineffective beyond the States, but upon a peculiar interpretation of the first sentence of the Fourteenth Amendment, which reads: “All persons born or naturalized “in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction “thereof, are citizens of the United States and of “the State wherein they reside.” The last clause, "and of the State wherein they reside,” is said to restrict the words “United States" to the several

” States. We are told that had the framers of the Amendment contemplated a broader field than the States they would have written, “and of the State or Territory where they reside.” This, certainly, they would not have done. Citizenship involves allegiance. Allegiance is due only to a sovereign. The territorial governments have no attribute of sovereignty, being merely the creatures of Congress and existing during its pleasure. Persons have indeed been described in judicial opinions as “citizens

1 See infra, p. 106.

2 See infra, p. 125.

" “of a Territory,” but this must be understood as a term of convenient description. As “a citizen of “Philadelphia” describes a citizen of the State of Pennsylvania residing in one of its cities, so “a citi"zen of Alaska" means a citizen of the United States residing in one of those Territories whose position in the United States has been aptly indicated by likening them to organized municipalities.”i The clause is to be understood as a distinct command rather than as part of a general description. Its sole

purpose is to compel each State to recognize as its citizens all persons residing therein whom the United States recognize as their citizens.

[ocr errors]

1

The narrow construction of the Amendment that would restrict United States citizenship to persons born or naturalized within a State is disapproved by the Supreme Court, which has said that a man “must “reside within the State to make him a citizen of it, "but it is only necessary that he should be born or “naturalized in the United States to be a citizen of “the Union":2 And Mr. Justice Bradley said in the same case: “The question is now settled by the · Fourteenth Amendment itself, that citizenship of “the United States is the primary citizenship in “this country; and that State citizenship is second“ary and derivative, depending upon citizenship of “the United States and the citizen's place of resi

[blocks in formation]

“dence."1 In a late opinion the Court says: “The words “in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction “thereof,' in the first sentence of the Fourteenth “Amendment of the Constitution, must be presumed “to have been understood and intended by the Con

gress which proposed the amendment, and by the · legislatures which adopted it, in the same sense in “which the like words had been used by Chief Justice “Marshall in the well-known case of The Exchange ; “and as the equivalent of the words 'within the limits “and under the jurisdiction of the United States,' and “the converse of the words 'out of the limits and juris“ diction of the United States,' as habitually used in “the Naturalization Acts.” A scrutiny of Naturali

2 zation Acts, beginning with the Act of 1795, will show that “the United States” wherein an applicant for citizenship must have resided for a prescribed period, and in which he may be naturalized, includes the Territories.

The terms “citizen,” “citizen of the United States," and “citizens of the United States” are employed elsewhere in the Constitution to describe a larger body than the people of the States. The Constitution prescribes that a Congressman must have been seven years a “citizen of the United States," and a Senator nine years. Is the State of Utah unlawfully represented in the Senate on the theory that her Senators have only been citizens of the United States since Utah was admitted to statehood in 1896?

1 Page 112. Chief Justice Marshall had anticipated this opinion many years before, saying: “A citizen of the United States residing in any State of the Union, is a citizen of that State.” Gassies v. Ballon, 6 Peters 761.

2 U. S. v. Wong Kim Ark, 169 U. S. 649, 687.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »