Home > 106th Congressional Bills > H.R. 2883 (rh) To amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to confer United States citizenship automatically and retroactively on certain foreign-born children adopted by citizens of the United States. [Reported in House] ...

H.R. 2883 (rh) To amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to confer United States citizenship automatically and retroactively on certain foreign-born children adopted by citizens of the United States. [Reported in House] ...


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106th CONGRESS
  2d Session
                                H. R. 2883


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                           September 20, 2000

                                Received

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 AN ACT


 
 To amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to modify the provisions 
 governing acquisition of citizenship by children born outside of the 
                 United States, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Child Citizenship Act of 2000''.

   TITLE I--CITIZENSHIP FOR CERTAIN CHILDREN BORN OUTSIDE THE UNITED 
                                 STATES

SEC. 101. AUTOMATIC ACQUISITION OF CITIZENSHIP FOR CERTAIN CHILDREN 
              BORN OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES.

    (a) In General.--Section 320 of the Immigration and Nationality Act 
(8 U.S.C. 1431) is amended to read as follows:

 ``children born outside the united states and residing permanently in 
  the united states; conditions under which citizenship automatically 
                                acquired

    ``Sec. 320. (a) A child born outside of the United States 
automatically becomes a citizen of the United States when all of the 
following conditions have been fulfilled:
            ``(1) At least one parent of the child is a citizen of the 
        United States, whether by birth or naturalization.
            ``(2) The child is under the age of eighteen years.
            ``(3) The child is residing in the United States in the 
        legal and physical custody of the citizen parent pursuant to a 
        lawful admission for permanent residence.
    ``(b) Subsection (a) shall apply to a child adopted by a United 
States citizen parent if the child satisfies the requirements 
applicable to adopted children under section 101(b)(1).''.
    (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections of such Act is 
amended by striking the item relating to section 320 and inserting the 
following:

``Sec. 320. Children born outside the United States and residing 
                            permanently in the United States; 
                            conditions under which citizenship 
                            automatically acquired.''.

SEC. 102. ACQUISITION OF CERTIFICATE OF CITIZENSHIP FOR CERTAIN 
              CHILDREN BORN OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES.

    (a) In General.--Section 322 of the Immigration and Nationality Act 
(8 U.S.C. 1433) is amended to read as follows:

``children born and residing outside the united states; conditions for 
                  acquiring certificate of citizenship

    ``Sec. 322. (a) A parent who is a citizen of the United States may 
apply for naturalization on behalf of a child born outside of the 
United States who has not acquired citizenship automatically under 
section 320. The Attorney General shall issue a certificate of 
citizenship to such parent upon proof, to the satisfaction of the 
Attorney General, that the following conditions have been fulfilled:
            ``(1) At least one parent is a citizen of the United 
        States, whether by birth or naturalization.
            ``(2) The United States citizen parent--
                    ``(A) has been physically present in the United 
                States or its outlying possessions for a period or 
                periods totaling not less than five years, at least two 
                of which were after attaining the age of fourteen 
                years; or
                    ``(B) has a citizen parent who has been physically 
                present in the United States or its outlying 
                possessions for a period or periods totaling not less 
                than five years, at least two of which were after 
                attaining the age of fourteen years.
            ``(3) The child is under the age of eighteen years.
            ``(4) The child is residing outside of the United States in 
        the legal and physical custody of the citizen parent, is 
        temporarily present in the United States pursuant to a lawful 
        admission, and is maintaining such lawful status.
    ``(b) Upon approval of the application (which may be filed from 
abroad) and, except as provided in the last sentence of section 337(a), 
upon taking and subscribing before an officer of the Service within the 
United States to the oath of allegiance required by this Act of an 
applicant for naturalization, the child shall become a citizen of the 
United States and shall be furnished by the Attorney General with a 
certificate of citizenship.
    ``(c) Subsections (a) and (b) shall apply to a child adopted by a 
United States citizen parent if the child satisfies the requirements 
applicable to adopted children under section 101(b)(1).''.
    (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections of such Act is 
amended by striking the item relating to section 322 and inserting the 
following:

``Sec. 322. Children born and residing outside the United States; 
                            conditions for acquiring certificate of 
                            citizenship.''.

SEC. 103. CONFORMING AMENDMENT.

    (a) In General.--Section 321 of the Immigration and Nationality Act 
(8 U.S.C. 1432) is repealed.
    (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections of such Act is 
amended by striking the item relating to section 321.

SEC. 104. EFFECTIVE DATE.

    The amendments made by this title shall take effect 120 days after 
the date of the enactment of this Act and shall apply to individuals 
who satisfy the requirements of section 320 or 322 of the Immigration 
and Nationality Act, as in effect on such effective date.

  TITLE II--PROTECTIONS FOR CERTAIN ALIENS VOTING BASED ON REASONABLE 
                         BELIEF OF CITIZENSHIP

SEC. 201. PROTECTIONS FROM FINDING OF BAD MORAL CHARACTER, REMOVAL FROM 
              THE UNITED STATES, AND CRIMINAL PENALTIES.

    (a) Protection From Being Considered Not of Good Moral Character.--
            (1) In general.--Section 101(f) of the Immigration and 
        Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(f)) is amended by adding at the 
        end the following:
``In the case of an alien who makes a false statement or claim of 
citizenship, or who registers to vote or votes in a Federal, State, or 
local election (including an initiative, recall, or referendum) in 
violation of a lawful restriction of such registration or voting to 
citizens, if each natural parent of the alien (or, in the case of an 
adopted alien, each adoptive parent of the alien) is or was a citizen 
(whether by birth or naturalization), the alien permanently resided in 
the United States prior to attaining the age of 16, and the alien 
reasonably believed at the time of such statement, claim, or violation 
that he or she was a citizen, no finding that the alien is, or was, not 
of good moral character may be made based on it.''.
            (2) Effective date.--The amendment made by paragraph (1) 
        shall be effective as if included in the enactment of the 
        Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 
        1996 (Public Law 104-208; 110 Stat. 3009-546) and shall apply 
        to individuals having an application for a benefit under the 
        Immigration and Nationality Act pending on or after September 
        30, 1996.
    (b) Protection From Being Considered Inadmissible.--
            (1) Unlawful voting.--Section 212(a)(10)(D) of the 
        Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(10)(D)) is 
        amended to read as follows:
                    ``(D) Unlawful voters.--
                            ``(i) In general.--Any alien who has voted 
                        in violation of any Federal, State, or local 
                        constitutional provision, statute, ordinance, 
                        or regulation is inadmissible.
                            ``(ii) Exception.--In the case of an alien 
                        who voted in a Federal, State, or local 
                        election (including an initiative, recall, or 
                        referendum) in violation of a lawful 
                        restriction of voting to citizens, if each 
                        natural parent of the alien (or, in the case of 
                        an adopted alien, each adoptive parent of the 
                        alien) is or was a citizen (whether by birth or 
                        naturalization), the alien permanently resided 
                        in the United States prior to attaining the age 
                        of 16, and the alien reasonably believed at the 
                        time of such violation that he or she was a 
                        citizen, the alien shall not be considered to 
                        be inadmissible under any provision of this 
                        subsection based on such violation.''.
            (2) Falsely claiming citizenship.--Section 212(a)(6)(C)(ii) 
        of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 
        1182(a)(6)(C)(ii)) is amended to read as follows:
                            ``(ii) Falsely claiming citizenship.--
                                    ``(I) In general.--Any alien who 
                                falsely represents, or has falsely 
                                represented, himself or herself to be a 
                                citizen of the United States for any 
                                purpose or benefit under this Act 
                                (including section 274A) or any other 
                                Federal or State law is inadmissible.
                                    ``(II) Exception.--In the case of 
                                an alien making a representation 
                                described in subclause (I), if each 
                                natural parent of the alien (or, in the 
                                case of an adopted alien, each adoptive 
                                parent of the alien) is or was a 
                                citizen (whether by birth or 
                                naturalization), the alien permanently 
                                resided in the United States prior to 
                                attaining the age of 16, and the alien 
                                reasonably believed at the time of 
                                making such representation that he or 
                                she was a citizen, the alien shall not 
                                be considered to be inadmissible under 
                                any provision of this subsection based 
                                on such representation.''.
            (3) Effective dates.--The amendment made by paragraph (1) 
        shall be effective as if included in the enactment of section 
        347 of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant 
        Responsibility Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-208; 110 Stat. 3009-
        638) and shall apply to voting occurring before, on, or after 
        September 30, 1996. The amendment made by paragraph (2) shall 
        be effective as if included in the enactment of section 344 of 
        the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act 
        of 1996 (Public Law 104-208; 110 Stat. 3009-637) and shall 
        apply to representations made on or after September 30, 1996. 
        Such amendments shall apply to individuals in proceedings under 
        the Immigration and Nationality Act on or after September 30, 
        1996.
    (c) Protection From Being Considered Deportable.--
            (1) Unlawful voting.--Section 237(a)(6) of the Immigration 
        and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(6)) is amended to read as 
        follows:
            ``(6) Unlawful voters.--
                    ``(A) In general.--Any alien who has voted in 
                violation of any Federal, State, or local 
                constitutional provision, statute, ordinance, or 
                regulation is deportable.
                    ``(B) Exception.--In the case of an alien who voted 
                in a Federal, State, or local election (including an 
                initiative, recall, or referendum) in violation of a 
                lawful restriction of voting to citizens, if each 
                natural parent of the alien (or, in the case of an 
                adopted alien, each adoptive parent of the alien) is or 
                was a citizen (whether by birth or naturalization), the 
                alien permanently resided in the United States prior to 
                attaining the age of 16, and the alien reasonably 
                believed at the time of such violation that he or she 
                was a citizen, the alien shall not be considered to be 
                deportable under any provision of this subsection based 
                on such violation.''.
            (2) Falsely claiming citizenship.--Section 237(a)(3)(D) of 
        the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(3)(D)) is 
        amended to read as follows:
                    ``(D) Falsely claiming citizenship.--
                            ``(i) In general.--Any alien who falsely 
                        represents, or has falsely represented, himself 
                        to be a citizen of the United States for any 
                        purpose or benefit under this Act (including 
                        section 274A) or any Federal or State law is 
                        deportable.
                            ``(ii) Exception.--In the case of an alien 
                        making a representation described in clause 
                        (i), if each natural parent of the alien (or, 
                        in the case of an adopted alien, each adoptive 
                        parent of the alien) is or was a citizen 
                        (whether by birth or naturalization), the alien 
                        permanently resided in the United States prior 
                        to attaining the age of 16, and the alien 
                        reasonably believed at the time of making such 
                        representation that he or she was a citizen, 
                        the alien shall not be considered to be 
                        deportable under any provision of this 
                        subsection based on such representation.''.
            (3) Effective dates.--The amendment made by paragraph (1) 
        shall be effective as if included in the enactment of section 
        347 of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant 
        Responsibility Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-208; 110 Stat. 3009-
        638) and shall apply to voting occurring before, on, or after 
        September 30, 1996. The amendment made by paragraph (2) shall 
        be effective as if included in the enactment of section 344 of 
        the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act 
        of 1996 (Public Law 104-208; 110 Stat. 3009-637) and shall 
        apply to representations made on or after September 30, 1996. 
        Such amendments shall apply to individuals in proceedings under 
        the Immigration and Nationality Act on or after September 30, 
        1996.
    (d) Protection From Criminal Penalties.--
            (1) Criminal penalty for voting by aliens in federal 
        election.--Section 611 of title 18, United States Code, is 
        amended by adding at the end the following:
    ``(c) Subsection (a) does not apply to an alien if--
            ``(1) each natural parent of the alien (or, in the case of 
        an adopted alien, each adoptive parent of the alien) is or was 
        a citizen (whether by birth or naturalization);
            ``(2) the alien permanently resided in the United States 
        prior to attaining the age of 16; and
            ``(3) the alien reasonably believed at the time of voting 
        in violation of such subsection that he or she was a citizen of 
        the United States.''.

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