United States v. Wong Kim Ark

PETITIONER: United States
RESPONDENT: Wong Kim Ark
LOCATION:

DOCKET NO.: 132
DECIDED BY: Fuller Court (1898-1902)
LOWER COURT:

ARGUED: Mar 05, 1897
DECIDED: Mar 28, 1898

Facts of the case

The Chinese Exclusion Acts denied citizenship to Chinese immigrants. Moreover, by treaty no Chinese subject in the United States could become a naturalized citizen. Wong Kim Ark was born in San Francisco. At age 21, he returned to China to visit his parents who had previously resided in the United States for 20 years. When he returned to the United States, Wong was denied entry on the ground that he was not a citizen.

Question

Could the government deny citizenship to persons born in the United States in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment?