Is McCain Eligible? Born overseasSubmitted by Rory on Wed, 01/30/2008 - 13:11
The US Constitution states, No person except a natural born citizen,shall be eligible to the office of President
Three major candidates have sought the Presidency who were born outside the United States: Barry Goldwater (ran in 1964) was born in Arizona while it was still a U.S. territory, George Romney (ran in 1968) was born in Mexico to U.S. parents, and John McCain (ran in 2000 and runs in 2008) was born in the Panama Canal Zone to U.S. parents. Barry Goldwater's case among these three is unique in that although Arizona was not a state, it was a fully incorporated territory of the United States, making it debatable whether or not he was born "outside" the United States. The Panama Canal Zone, though controlled by the United States and partly under its jurisdiction, was part of Panama.
None of these candidates was elected, so it has never been fully addressed whether children born to Americans overseas are "natural-born citizens" and thus eligible for the Presidency.