William & Mary Journal of Race, Gender, and Social Justice


The Trump Administration’s war on immigration will be marked in history as one replete with white supremacy and terror. Much attention has been focused in the realm of undocumented immigrants, detention centers, and family separations because of the pervasiveness of those issues and the gravity of the human rights violations occurring in the United States. However, little focus has been given to immigrants who are lawful permanent residents or naturalized citizens at risk of denaturalization and deprivation of their constitutional rights. This Note highlights the effects of the Trump Administration’s war on immigration on citizens and green card holders in the United States. This Note will analyze the Third Circuit’s recent opinion in Tineo v. Attorney General United States of America that conferred citizenship upon a lawful permanent resident born in the Dominican Republic to unwed parents amidst strong government opposition. The government presented an archaic argument in saying that the Court was without power to remedy an equal protection violation that would result in conferring citizenship because of the plenary power doctrine. It is in that context of the Trump Administration’s war on immigration that the government used an outdated interpretation of the plenary power doctrine to ensure that Tineo would not be granted citizenship. This Note will demonstrate how courts have the power to confer citizenship onto people whose constitutional rights have been violated.