CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCCU) — President Trump says he plans to sign an executive order ending birthright citizenship for children of non-citizens and unauthorized immigrants born on U.S. soil.
But it's not clear if the president has the authority to strip citizenship of those born in the U.S. with an executive order.
“How ridiculous,” Trump said. “We are the only country in the world where a person comes in and has a baby and the baby is essentially a citizen of the United States for 85 years with all of those benefits."
This announcement has local immigration groups and families on edge after the president said his plans are in the works, but some don't see it becoming a reality.
“It doesn't worry us that much because I just don't think it is possible,” said Charlotte Alvarez, executive director and attorney for the Immigration Projects, helping immigrants with legal concerns in downstate Illinois. “It's highly unlikely that the Supreme Court would agree to overturn hundreds of years of precedence and say this case from the 1800s is wrong and get rid of birthright citizenship."
But that hasn't stopped local immigrant groups from talking with some local families in jeopardy.
“It's a terrifying situation because by the time somebody has a kid, when they have been living here for a long time, this is their home," said Ricardo Diaz, who is on the board of directors for C-U Immigration forum.
Diaz says for immigrant families, America is the only place they know.