The case for birthright citizenship for individuals born in U.S. territories, Tuaua v. United States, could be decided by the Supreme Court. Attorneys filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari Monday requesting that the Supreme Court review the decision of a lower court denying citizenship to people born in American Samoa.
"Our goal is for the Supreme Court to recognize that citizenship is a constitutional right, not a mere congressional privilege, for the millions of Americans born in U.S. territories," Neil Weare, president and founder of We the People Project, a nonprofit advocacy organization for Americans in U.S. territories, told NBC News.
In June 2015, the District of Columbia Circuit Court ruled that the citizenship clause of the 14th Amendment was "ambiguous" as to whether birthright citizenship was guaranteed in overseas U.S. territories.
"The Supreme Court has an opportunity now to turn the page on the controversial Insular Cases, which were decided by the same Supreme Court that decided Plessy v. Ferguson and have been criticized for establishing a doctrine of 'separate and unequal' in U.S. territories," Weare said.