WASHINGTON -- Supreme Court Justices Anthony Kennedy and Stephen Breyer seemed to indicate Thursday they'd consider a U.S. citizen born in Puerto Rico "natural-born" and eligible to run for president. Their comments, directed at Puerto Rican-born Rep. José Serrano (D-N.Y.), came during a House Appropriations Committee hearing on the Supreme Court's budget.

"We're waiting for your case on the Puerto Rican presidency to come to us, but you also have to be 35 years old, don't you? Have you met that requirement?" Kennedy joked. "It's Article II Section I."

"I may double that soon," Serrano replied. "It may come up some day, you might have someone born over there running. But thank you for your semi-opinion."

Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory, but residents do not get to vote for president. They do elect a non-voting delegate to the House of Representatives.

"I know many possible people from Puerto Rico ... who could be elected," Breyer said. "Modestly, in this room, I will not say exactly who."

Serrano said he was "pretty sure, confident" that a Puerto Rican-born citizen could become president, a view he said Kennedy and Breyer's statements supported.

"No, I have not given an opinion, sir," Breyer said in response.

"I understand, I understand. You have not given an opinion, and nobody here would write that, but let me just say my exploratory committee is coming together in the next half hour," Serrano joked.

Kennedy noted that the "likely explanation" for the natural-born citizen clause of the constitution was that the founding fathers were trying to prevent European royalty from occupying the White House.

"That's the probable reason," Kennedy said. "I wasn't there at the time."

Also on HuffPost:

Loading Slideshow...
  • Activists dance in an event to support "One Billion Rising" global campaign in New Delhi, India, Thursday, Feb. 14, 2013. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

  • A churchgoer prepares to receive ashes from Baltimore Archbishop William Lori's outstretched hand during an Ash Wednesday mass in Baltimore, Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2013. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

  • Portuguese performer Pauliana Almeida, 34, kisses her fiancee Japan's Yuga Hatta, 26, after rappelling down the Clerigos' Tower during a performance to mark St. Valentine's Day, Porto, Portugal, Thursday, Feb. 14, 2013. (AP Photo/Paulo Duarte)

  • North Korean army officers and soldiers attend a rally at Kim Il Sung Square on Thursday, Feb. 14, 2013, in Pyongyang, North Korea, in celebration of the country's recent nuclear test. The writing reads "We warmly congratulate the 3rd successful underground nuclear test." (AP Photo/Jon Chol Jin)

  • A 'Naga sadhu' or naked Hindu holy man attends to a call as he plays a small drum at the Maha Kumbh festival in Allahabad, India, Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013. (AP Photo/Rajesh Kumar Singh)

  • A Palestinian wears a mask during clashes with the Israeli army north of the West Bank city of Jenin in support to the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike in Israeli jails and against the administrative detention, Friday, Feb. 15, 2013. (AP Photo/Mohammed Ballas)

  • Ferris wheel attendants walk up the inside of the wheel to make it spin at a rural carnival in South Dagon Township on February 14, 2013 in Yangon, Burma. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

  • A 'Gilles of Binche' throws an orange during the Binche carnival, in Binche, Belgium, Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013. (AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

  • Revellers take part in Mardi Gras carnival parade on February 12, 2013 in Fort-de-France on the French Caribbean island of Martinique. (JEAN-MICHEL ANDRE/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Indian Sikh school students participate in a protest against the ban on wearing turban in public schools in France, in New Delhi, India, Friday, Feb. 15, 2013 on the occasion of a two-day visit of French President Francois Hollande in India. (AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal)