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June 20, 2015

CDR Kerchner (Ret) Responds to Professor Gutzmans Dodgy Comments About Vattel
Filed under: Articles/Reports-CFK cfkerchner @ 11:30 a.m.
Tags: Article II Section 1 Clause 5, Benjamin Franklin, CDR Kerchner (Ret), dual citizen at birth is not a
natural born Citizen, Emer de Vattel, Founders TV, George Washington, John Jay, Mike Church, natural
born citizen, natural born Citizen meaning, presidential eligibility clause, Professor Gutzman, sole
allegiance at birth, The Law of Nations of Principles of Natural Law, U.S. Constitution, unity of
citizenship at birth

Emer d Vattel Author of The Law of Nations or Principles of Natural Law. Click on Image for More

CDR Kerchner (Ret) Responds to Professor

Gutzmans Dodgy Comments About Vattel
In the video below, listen to Professor Gutzmans attempt to diminish the writings and words of
Vattel as to the meaning of natural born Citizen in the presidential eligibility clause in Article II
of our U.S. Constitution, apparently in an effort to support the eligibility of Ted Cruz who was born
in Canada to a non-U.S. Citizen father: . His position thus would also to continue to support the eligibility of Obama who also
had a non-U.S. Citizen father and whose exact and true birth location has been the subject of
debate and discussion for the last 7 years. This 2013 video interview of Professor
Gutzman has been re-surfaced recently by Cruz supporters. Join the discussion here and/or read my
comments about Professor Gutzmans remarks below.
Here is a link to the relevant section of Vattel that Professor Gutzman was being questioned about
in the 2013 interview:

Watch below video interview of Professor Gutzman and then read my comments

I listened to Professor Gutzmans comments in the above video. Here are my comments.
The purpose of having the term natural born Citizen as a constitutional requirement for future
presidents and commanders in chief or our military was as a strong check against foreign
influence, per John Jays letter to George Washington, on the person who would hold that office in
the future. They wanted a person born with Sole Allegiance and Unity of Citizenship to the USA
and only the USA. See this article for more on that point: . They would never have wanted a person born with dual or tri
citizenship and attendant multiple allegiances and foreign influences on them at birth to ever gain
command of our military. As with anything dealing with our Constitution, if you wish to
understand terms therein we need to go back to original intent and understanding as to why the
founders and framers chose the words they did. We need to understand the Who, What, When,
Where, How, and Why the term natural born Citizen was chosen by the founders and framers.
The Why was they wanted a person with sole allegiance to the USA at birth, and only the USA, for
future commanders in chief of our military.
See: The Three Legged Stool Test for Natural Born Citizenship to Constitutional Standards:

Now some specific comments about what Professor Gutzman said and also what he omitted from
Vol.1 Chapter 19 Section 212 of Vattels writings. First, he does not give the full name of Vattels
book. And that is important to the debate on its content. It was titled The Law of Nations or
Principles of Natural Law. Natural Law is key to this debate because the term under scrutiny is
a natural law term, natural born Citizen. Any legal term with the word natural in it refers to
Natural Law and not to positive, man-made law. Vattels book was a treatise on Natural Law. And
Natural Law forms the foundation of other types of law. And the founders and framers where
keenly interested and aware of Natural Law as evidenced by the opening of the Declaration of
Independence wherein it specifically cites the Laws of Nature, i.e., Natural Law. And the Law of
Nations was mentioned in the Constitution also in reference to defining Piracy. So the founders and
framers were keenly aware of Natural Law and the Law of Nations. And Vattel was their number
one choice and reference on those subjects.
I own both a French and English copy of Vattels The Law of Nations or Principles of Natural
Law. Regarding the comment that Vattels treatise The Law of Nations or Principles of Natural
Law being written in French, the professor does not mention that most of the key founders and
framers were multi-lingual and specifically they were fluent in French, which was the diplomatic
language of that time frame. The French were our allies in our Revolutionary War against
England. When he read part of the section 212 and he read the French word naturels he failed to
acknowledge that that in 1781 the French word naturels, years prior to the writing of the U.S.
Constitution in 1787, had been translated in treaty correspondence with the French to mean
natural born in U.S. English. Thus the USA founders in U.S. English understood the term the
naturels when used in the context of discussion of the matter of Citizenship in the USA or in the
case of England being a Subject of the King, they translated the adjective and term and understood
it to mean the natural born. See:
It also should be noted that the very title of Vol. 1, Chapter 19 in which natural born Citizen is
defined, is Des citoyens et naturels which in the USA meant to the founders and framers, The
natural born Citizens. They got the idea and meaning of natural born Citizen from Vattel and
other writers in Europe of the Enlightenment. They did not look to English Common Law to define
and understand the citizenship terms in our new federal Constitution and Constitutional Republic.
They discarded English Common Law when it came to Citizenship in the new nation. They looked
to Natural Law and the Law of Nations to found our new form of government, a Constitutional
Republic, and to determine who would be its initial citizens and the subsequent natural born
Citizens, i.e., the children born in the country of citizens (both parents, born or naturalized).

The professor also neglects to read all of section 212 in which after Vattel states to be a "naturel"
one must be born in the country of parents who are citizens, and since at that time married women
could not have independent citizenship and the citizenship of the husband determined that of his
wife and children, Vattel goes on to state that emphatically the father must absolutely be a citizen of
the country for the child to be a citizen of the country at birth. Vattel does not say the citizenship of
the mother and place of birth do not matter. He clearly said it does in the prior clear cut definition
of the naturel Citoyens, the natural born Citizens. But Vattel in the balance of section 212 further
reinforces the importance of the citizenship of the father. Per Vattel not having a father who was a
Citizen of the country you were born in absolutely precludes you from being a natural born Citizen
of that country and that it is only your place of birth and not your country. The citizenship of the
father controlled and determined the citizenship of his wife and his children. It takes two tigers to
naturally create a tiger and two lions to naturally create a lion. Likewise it takes two Citizen of the
country to create a natural born Citizen when the child is born in the parents country.
In the cases of Obama, Cruz, Rubio, and Jindal the citizenship of their father when they were born
is clearly a relevant issue. None of them had a U.S. citizen father at the time of their birth and thus
they are not "natural born Citizens" of the USA to constitutional standards. In addition, for the
case of Ted Cruz he was clearly and admittedly not born in the USA either in addition to not having
a U.S. Citizen father when he was born. Thus Cruz misses natural born Citizen of the USA status
on two counts.
Read and learn the constitutional citizenship status for all our Presidents since the U.S.
Constitution was adopted:
Only the Laws of Nature can create a natural born Citizen. No man-made, positive law such as
the Act of Congress Title 8 Section 1401, adopted pursuant to its naturalization power granted to it
under our U.S. Constitution can do so. That law does not even mention natural born Citizen nor
does the word natural appear in it anywhere. Those who conflate Citizen at birth created by
man-made laws such as Title 8 Section 1401 with the natural law term natural born Citizen at
birth, are being illogical and are spreading confusion and disinformation. See this link for more on
The professor in his 2013 interview was carefully picking and choosing words, and ignoring others,
in his readings and discussions about Vattels book/treatise to try and make the case that Obama
and Cruz are constitutionally eligible. They are not.
As to English translations, there was a prior English translation of Vattel done circa 1759/1760 in
England that Professor Gutzman did not mention. However, the 1797 is considered the better
translation. But the founders and framers were using the 1775 edition edited by Dumas which was
in French, as attested to by Benjamin Franklin. See: In regards to the 1797 English language translation which correctly
translates Vattel's des naturel Citoyen to "natural born Citizen", the 1797 edition was just
confirming and clarifying what the world at that time knew as to what Vattel meant and as was
implemented in the U.S. Constitution several years before. And it was widely used in the new and
great constitutional republic in the new world., the USA. And it was used to defend the rights of
U.S. natural born Citizens in the disputes with England on the high seas leading up to the war of

Do words come into existence and meaning only by their instant creation in a dictionary or legal
writings first and only then at the exact time of printing said book. Or were they there and
understood before that print date and in use for some time in society? Use common sense.
The 1797 translation of Vattel's treatise into English simply was an improved translation from the
original French and it confirmed and clarified to English speakers and readers what Vattel meant
by his term "Des Citoyens et naturels" and/or naturel Citoyens, and his definition of same is therein
clearly written. And the founders and framers knew and understood what it meant and that Vattel
was their source when they chose the term, natural born Citizen. The 1781 treaty negotiations
translation I mentioned previously prove that. When it came to the U.S. Supreme Court cases in
the first 100 years of the USA they clearly looked to Vattel's writings on issues of Citizenship,
quoting him literally in a couple cases, and saying in at least one case that Vattel was the best on the
matter of Citizenship issues.
See: for some example cases.
When the professor in the soft ball back and forth discussion in the video finally admits that hes
not sure and says I dont know, he is in effect saying what we Constitutionalists all have been
saying since 2008, we need the U.S. Supreme Court to decide this. And as Chief Justice Marshall
said as to words and matters in the Constitution, the U.S. Supreme Court should have taken up a
case if it goes to the Constitution, as it does in this matter on the meaning of natural born Citizen
to constitutional standards as it applies in Article II. The U.S. Supreme Court should decide it once
and for all instead of ducking the question for the last almost 7 years. The U.S. Supreme Court
should have taken up the Atty Berg case in the summer of 2008 and decided the question right then
and there re Obama. In my 2010 petition to the U.S. Supreme Court we specifically said the
question would come up again in the future. See:
Now the Pandoras box is open and we have people not even born in the USA and with non-U.S.
citizen fathers and twisting words and conflating two different legal terms and arguing they are
eligible to be President and Commander in Chief of our military.
For more on the term natural born Citizen, see the prior historical and legal writings on the
term and also my writings on that term at: and and . Also watch this video by the
renowned constitutional scholar Dr. Herb Titus Part I: and Part II: Also see these papers and writings on Vattels
influence of the founders and framers:
CDR Charles Kerchner (Ret)
Lehigh Valley PA USA