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A new study released by the non-partisan Pew Research Center reveals that 8% of all children born in the United States in 2008 were the offspring of illegal alien parents. Of the estimated 4.3 million births in the United States in 2008, approximately 340,000 babies had parents who were in the country illegally.

The study was conducted by the Pew Hispanic Center, which is a project of the Pew Research Center, and it was based on 2009 data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey. The study revealed that illegal aliens make up 4% of the U.S. population, but because they tend to be younger and have higher birthrates than U.S. Citizens, the percentage of their newborns is double their percentage of the population.

The study also found that 80% of the estimated 5.1 million children of illegal aliens are U.S. citizens.

The debate over Birthright Citizenship has gained momentum over the last several weeks after Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) suggested that he may propose a Constitutional Amendment that repeals the Birthright Citizenship clause of the 14th Amendment. Senate Republicans have called for hearings since Sen. Graham's statement.

8 U.S.C. § 1401 of federal code provides automatic citizenship to "a person born in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof." The Supreme Court has not interpreted how the 14th Amendment applies to children born to illegal alien parents, so a bill offered by former Rep. Nathan Deal (R-Ga.) and taken over by Rep. Gary Miller (R-Calif.) proposes changing the federal code to require at least one parent to be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident. The same concept was part of comprehensive immigration reform bill offered by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) in 1993.

The Birthright Citizenship Act of 2009, H.R.1868, is one of NumbersUSA's "5 Great Immigration Reduction Bills."

Read the entire report at the Pew Research Center.

Birthright Citizenship