Do First Amendment Rights Only Apply to U.S. Citizens?


Quick Answer

U.S. citizens and non-U.S. citizens are afforded constitutional rights as long as they are on U.S. territory. The 14th Amendment grants equal protection of the laws to all "persons" within U.S. jurisdiction.

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Full Answer

United States courts have held the position that noncitizens who legally reside in the United States are safeguarded by the First Amendment, which includes the right to make political contributions, according to Paul Sherman. Glenn Greenwald cites the judicial cases Boumediene v. Bush and Yick Wo v. Hopkins as evidence of the common understanding that foreigners on U.S. soil are afforded the same rights given to U.S. citizens.

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