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Obama Backs Law Helping McCain



U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) wrote her legislative fix on a yellow legal pad, which she delivered to the Senate clerk, to ensure that any person born to U.S. citizens serving in the armed services while stationed abroad would qualify to become president of the United States.

By Shailagh Murray
FORT WORTH -- Sen. Barack Obama's campaign announced he would co-sponsor legislation introduced yesterday by his political ally Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) to ensure that John McCain can become president, even though he was born in the Panama Canal Zone.

The issue of McCain's eligibility was raised in a New York Times article noting the constitutional requirement that a U.S. president be a "natural-born citizen" had never been fully defined.

The McCaskill bill, submitted immediately after she scrawled it onto a notepad on the Senate floor in response to the Times story, would establish the eligibility of anyone born to a U.S. citizen who is serving overseas as an active or reserve member of the U.S. armed forces. The Arizona senator's father was a Navy officer serving in the Canal Zone when McCain was born there in 1936.

"Senator McCain has earned the right to be his party's nominee, and no loophole should prevent him from competing in this campaign," Obama said.

By Web Politics Editor  |  February 29, 2008; 12:15 PM ET
 
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