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Vox Sentences: Trump wants to executive-order his way out of the Constitution

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President Trump says he wants to end birthright citizenship; floods in Italy submerge a big portion of Venice.

An executive order to end birthright citizenship

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  • In an exclusive interview with Axios, President Trump said he plans to sign an executive order that removes birthright citizenship to children of non-citizens and unauthorized immigrants in the US. [Axios / Jonathan Swan and Stef W. Kight]
  • Through this order, Trump essentially wants to change the US Constitution, which was amended 150 years ago to include these words: “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States.” This clause came to become part of the 14th Amendment in 1868. [CNN / Kevin Liptak and Devan Cole]
  • Experts widely agree that this cannot be done. Not only is the 14th Amendment considered one of the driving laws that govern the US, but Trump’s executive order would be invalid under a longstanding Supreme Court precedent. [Vox / Sean Illing]
  • Trump told Axios that the order to revoke birthright citizenship is still in the works; it’s unclear how such an executive order would work or what the timeline would be. Not long after, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) wrote that he’ll introduce legislation in Congress along with the president’s proposed reform. [BBC]
  • News of this comes just one week before the midterm elections, for which Trump has been campaigning by strongly advocating against illegal immigration. One of his key points during rallies for Republican candidates has been stopping the Honduran migrant caravan, which crossed Mexico and is traveling to the US border. [Vox / Dara Lind]
  • This is just the latest move in Trump’s proposed hardline immigration reform. During his tenure in the White House, he’s upheld a Muslim ban, suggested a multibillion-dollar investment in security at the US-Mexico border, and demanded an end to so-called chain migration. [NPR / Susan Davis and Scott Detrow]

Venice submerged

  • A ferocious stream of floods, thunderstorms, and a Category 3 hurricane hit the Italian Peninsula this week, killing at least 11 people and leaving many more injured. [AP / Colleen Barry]
  • Three-quarters of the northern Italian city of Venice — which rests on a lagoon and has canals rather than roads — was submerged underwater as of Tuesday afternoon, with rising floodwaters covering up many of the city’s historic landmarks, including St. Mark’s Square. [BBC]
  • Water levels rose up to 5 feet before receding, the highest level reached since December 2008, according to the city’s statistics. [Time]
  • Venice’s mayor said underwater barriers would have prevented the inundation. The years-long venture of the MOSE Project, which aims to build these floodgates, is long overdue, beset by cost overruns and corruption scandals involving the city’s officials. [NYT / Jim Yardley and Gaia Pianigiani]
  • The Italian floods are just one indicator of how weather events will become more extreme in the face of global warming. Winters and summers will be warmer in every city in America by 2050. [Vox / Umair Irfan, Eliza Barclay, and Kavya Sukumar]


  • Pharrell Williams joins the likes of Adele and Queen, among other artists, by filing a cease-and-desist order against President Trump for playing his track “Happy” at a campaign rally, mere hours after the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting. [The Root / Anne Branigin]
  • The Satanic Temple is planning to take legal action against Netflix’s The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina because it says the show copies a monument design of a goat-like deity often associated with Satan. [Telegraph / Elizabeth MacLeod]
  • A Shreveport, Louisiana, resident donated more than $1,500 to the local library after he discovered a book that was due 84 years ago. The donation equals the amount of actual late-fee charges, at 5 cents a day for more than three-quarters of a century. [Shreveport Times / Sarah Crawford]
  • Soccer superstar Cristiano Ronaldo is breaking yet another record — this time off the field. On Monday, he became the most followed person on Instagram, with 144 million followers, surpassing former top spot holder Selena Gomez. [Bleacher Report / Gill Clark]


“Every female comedian he has harmed deserves a place on the Comedy Cellar stage one hundred times before he should be allowed back on the stage.” [Protesters gathered outside the Comedy Cellar on Monday, where comedian Louis C.K., who has admitted to sexual misconduct, was set to perform / NYT]

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