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Jul 24 2013

Cruz Dismisses Birther Concerns

Sen. Ted Cruz participated in a big event to woo conservatives in Iowa, but he wants you to know that he’s totally not laying the groundwork for a 2016 presidential run. But it he were, he also wants you to know that it won’t be a problem that his father is Cuban:

“We are having a national debate about which direction the country should go…and what I am doing now is trying to participate in that national debate,” Cruz said Friday while in Iowa, a state frequented by those with White House ambitions. “I’m not focused on the politics…the last office I was elected to was student council. So this has been a bit of a whirlwind.”

Karl asked Cruz about his eligibility for the White House, which has been questioned given that he was born in Canada.

“My mother was born in Wilmington, Delaware. She’s a U.S. citizen, so I’m a U.S. citizen,” Cruz said.

“I’m not going to engage in a legal debate. The facts are clear,” he added. “I can tell you where I was born and who my parents were. And then as a legal matter, others can worry about that. I’m not going to engage.”

He’s right, of course, but let’s see if the birthers agree. He does have one big point in his favor — he isn’t black.

43 comments

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  1. 1
    robnyny

    This will be an excellent experiment in cognitive dissonance.

  2. 2
    Modusoperandi

    “He’s right, of course, but let’s see if the birthers agree. He does have one big point in his favor — he isn’t black.”

    Oh, please! The Birther Rule, like the Adultery Rule, only applies to Democrats.

    His skin color isn’t even an issue. It’s not important to the GOP that he’s white. It’s assumed.

  3. 3
    matty1

    the last office I was elected to was student council.

    Did he just forget the whole being a senator thing or has he been elected to the student council after being elected to the senate?

  4. 4
    Captain Mike

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but doesn’t being born in Canada automatically disqualify him from the Presidency? I was of the understanding that it’s not about citizenship or your parents, it’s whether or not where you were counts as U.S. territory.

  5. 5
    Michael Heath

    It would be interesting to know how old Ted Cruz’s mom was when he was born and how long she was out of the states when he was born. That’s because a law, since rescinded, would have disallowed Barack Obama to be a natural born citizen if his mom had bore him outside the U.S. I’m not sure what happened to one’s status after this law was rescinded since the new statute would have made Barack a citizen regardless of his mom’s age and location when he was borne.

  6. 6
    psweet

    Assuming you’re serious, Captain Mike, no that doesn’t disqualify him. That hasn’t been directly tested in court, but Congress made it explicit for Mitt Romney’s father, and John McCain was never challenged despite being born in Panama.

    If that was meant as satire, my apologies.

  7. 7
    Captain Mike

    No, I was quite serious. I thought the rules were that you had to be born in U.S. territory and at least 35 years of age. Is the second one untrue as well?

  8. 8
    Modusoperandi

    Captain Mike, that’s not an issue. Again: Republican.
     
    The real issue is his failure to prove that he did not take up to $200,000 from North Korean sources. And also I have in my hand a list of things that Cruz has said that may indicate that he does not support Israel absolutely, unequivocally, and totally.

  9. 9
    dickspringer

    Natural-born as opposed to naturalized. He is clearly eligible, as were John McCain and George Romney.

  10. 10
    slc1

    Re Michael Heath @ #5

    Not quite. The new law merely reduced the residency requirement before the age of 18 and after the age of 14 from 5 years to 2 years.

  11. 11
    slc1

    Re dickspringer @ #9

    However, both of McCain’s and Rmoney’s parents were American citizens.

  12. 12
    shouldbeworking

    I never thought that a black man could become president in my lifetime. And now there’s a chance a Canadian coud get to be president! Finally, a rethuglican that knows there’s something north of Gawd’s Land other than Russia.

  13. 13
    sigurd jorsalfar

    No Captain Mike. The constitutional clause covering the issue has no requirement for birth within US territory. It says one must be a ‘natural born Citizen’ to be president. This has always been interpreted to mean you have to be a US citizen at birth, which Cruz was because his mother was a US citizen when she gave birth to him.

    There are two other requirements, 35 years of age, and 14 years residency within the United States, but Cruz meets them both.

  14. 14
    Chiroptera

    Captain Mike, #4:

    The citizenship requirement is just that the candidate must be a “natural born citizen.” The US Constitution states that someone born in the United States is a citizen but doesn’t preclude laws that allow other people to be citizens by birth.

  15. 15
    dingojack

    MO (#8)- So I guess SLC won’t be voting for him then? *
    Dingo
    ——-
    * but will be sending him a nice 15Mt present sometime soon. :D

  16. 16
    Alverant

    Wait, President Obama’s mother was a US citizen so even if he was born in Kenya (before it existed as a country) wouldn’t he still be eligible? How are things different for Cruz apart from him being a Republican (as Mos pointed out)?

  17. 17
    sigurd jorsalfar

    @16 Correct. Amazing how irrational birthers are isn’t it?

  18. 18
    Gregory in Seattle

    @psweet #6 – McCain was born in the Panama Canal Zone, which in 1936 was a jurisdiction of the United States military. There was never any legitimate question about his meeting the constitutional requirements for President, just as there was never any legitimate question about Obama: both were born within the direct jurisdiction of the United States, albeit not within any state, and so are citizens by birthright.

    Cruz, on the other hand, was born outside any US jurisdiction: not in a territory, not in an embassy, and not on a US military base. His citizenship seems to arise out of the general amnesty given to resident aliens by Ronald Reagan in 1986. He is not a citizen by birthright, which would seem to put his constitutional qualifications into very serious question.

    This does raise an interesting question: what happens if we elect a president whom the Supreme Court rules is constitutionally ineligible? Does the mantle pass automatically to the Vice President? What if he is constitutionally ineligible, too? This is a murky situation that the Court would be best figuring out before a ruling is actually needed.

  19. 19
    Chiroptera

    Alverant, #16: Wait, President Obama’s mother was a US citizen so even if he was born in Kenya (before it existed as a country) wouldn’t he still be eligible?

    Actually, that isn’t enough for citizenship. Since his father was not a US citizen and he (according to Birther lore) was born on foreign territory, his mother had to meet certain residency requirements. If the claims by the Birthers were true, then under that laws that were in force at the time of Obama’s birth he wouldn’t have been a citizen.

  20. 20
    sigurd jorsalfar

    @18 I hadn’t heard that the legislation of 1986 gave anyone citizenship, just legal residency. I don’t claim to be an expert on the subject, so perhaps you could explain how this conferred citizenship on Cruz?

  21. 21
    Chiroptera

    Gregory in Seattle, #18: …both were born within the direct jurisdiction of the United States, albeit not within any state, and so are citizens by birthright.

    If the “both” refers to Obama, then this is not true. Hawaii was a state at the time of Obama’s birth.

    -

    Barry Goldwater was born in Arizona before it was admitted as a state. I’ve read some people trying to claim this would have disqualifed him as President as well, claims that I doubt anyone really takes seriously outside of certain fringe circles.

    -

    There were also rumors that Chester Allan Arthur was born in Canada, and some people tried to use this to discredit his eligibility.

  22. 22
    Ben P

    No, I was quite serious. I thought the rules were that you had to be born in U.S. territory and at least 35 years of age. Is the second one untrue as well?

    The constitution just says “natural born citizen.”

    There are two types of citizens in the US, although except for being president, they are legally equivalent in every way and can’t be discriminated against.

    1. Natural Born Citizens i.e. citizens by right of birth – any person born inside the US regardless of parentage, any person born outside the US to two US citizen parents, people born outside the US to one US parent if certain factors are met, or certain other minor ways.

    2. Naturalized citizen, someone who was a citizen of another country, applied to become a citizen of the United States, and was accepted, becoming a citizen at some time after birth.

    Birthers, that is, people who believe Obama is not qualified to be president, tend to fall into two groups also.

    Group 1 disputes the basic facts of Obama’s birth, claiming he wasn’t born when and where his birth certificate recites.

    Group 2 tends to admit Obama was born in Hawaii, but argues “natural born citizen” is something above and beyond merely “birthright citizen” like saying you have to have two US citizen parents or something. These are the people who would question whether Cruz qualfies, if, of course, they cared. But they don’t because Cruz is a republican.

  23. 23
    sailor1031

    Did Cruz specifically claim the amnesty? Or could he have? Wasn’t it only for illegals? If his mother was a US citizen I’m sure he would have become one too after arrival in the US by applying. Please let him be a US citizen I couldn’t bear it if he were a canadian.

  24. 24
    Gregory in Seattle

    @sigurd jorsalfar #20 – Hmm, you are right. I’m not sure how Cruz got his citizenship, then: my understanding is that he would not have qualified under the 14th Amendment.

    @Chiroptera #21 – I’m zero for two. Obama was born August 4, 1961, Hawaii joined the union almost exactly three years earlier. For some reason, I thought the dates were reversed.

  25. 25
    cptdoom

    RE: George Romney – the real issue with his eligibility for the Presidency was not the location of his birth, but the status of his parents at the time of his birth. Romney’s grandfather (Willard’s great-grandpa) took his harem and their children to Mexico after Utah disallowed polygamy and Romney was born in Mexico. The issue was whether Romney’s grandparents (and father, potentially) renounced their American citizenship when they fled to Mexico. If they had, then Romney would have been a natural-born Mexican citizen and therefore ineligible.

  26. 26
    Matt G

    But wait, was his father a US citizen, or Cuban?

  27. 27
    raven

    How do we know Cruz was born in Canada. And not Cuba or Kenya?

    Let’s see the real birth certificate. The long form one.

  28. 28
    bushrat

    The Canada Party is here to save you America…they really, really can’t do any worse.

  29. 29
    Chiroptera

    Matt G, #26:

    Cruz’s mother was a US citizen.

  30. 30
    Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :)

    His father’s Cuban, and he’s conservative so he’s pretty square. That makes him a derivative, and thus part of the liberal math conspiracy!

  31. 31
    Modusoperandi

    Chiroptera “Matt G, #26: Cruz’s mother was a US citizen.”
    If she was an American, then why was in a foreign country? Seems kind of suspicious to me. Me and The American People. And why isn’t the Lamestream Media covering this new controversy that I just made up?

  32. 32
    blf

    Oh for feck’s sake! I am a natural-born USA citizen indisputably born on foreign soil. I have a form issued by the USA Consul of the country where I was born saying as much. It’s called something like (it is in safekeeping so this is from memory) Certificate of Natural Born Citizen Born Abroad.

  33. 33
    imthegenieicandoanything

    It is NOT his skin color that would be a problem. He has the chance to dig his Evil Loon Party deeper into the hole of vicious incompetence and bigotry because he’s a totally vicious, useless, lying Xian asshole.

    All the teabaggers, Xians and wingnuts care about is that the candidate hates – stronger – what they hate, and will dance to their shrieking, tuneless music.

  34. 34
    chilidog99

    Gregory, @24, actually under U.S. law, since 190?? (I forget the actual year) anyone born in the Hawaiian territory was a U.S. citizen at birth.

  35. 35
    Anthony K

    How do we know Cruz was born in Canada. And not Cuba or Kenya?

    Let’s see the real birth certificate. The long form one.

    The one written with pee on snow?

    You folks can laugh it up now, but you’ll be singing a different tune when Cruz is the first president to remove his shoes before entering the White House and there’s nothing but tourtière and pemmican at the Correspondents’ Dinner.

    And that tune will be “Northwest Passage”. So that’s at least one silver lining.

  36. 36
    bobcarroll

    blf@32 is correct, A friend of mine is an example of the other side of this law. She, born in America, had a couple of kids with her German husband, and failed to apply for that certificate. Several years ago, one of her kids wanted to move to the US, where his mother, then divorced from her German spouse, was again living. The kid was not considered to be a US citizen, and had to wait for several years to come into the US as a non-citizen. He subsequently became a naturalized citizen, thus would be ineligible to be POTUS.

  37. 37
    dingojack

    As far as I recall, from earlier conversations about this topic, it goes a bit like this:
    A citizen of country has
    a) at least one parent who is a citizen of the country in question (blood)
    OR
    b) was born in the territory of the country in question (soil)
    OR
    c) both of the above (blood & soil)

    Note: the only way you can be a foreigner is to be born overseas AND have NEITHER parent a citizen of the country in question.

    Dingo

  38. 38
    Modusoperandi

    dingojack “Note: the only way you can be a foreigner is to be born overseas AND have NEITHER parent a citizen of the country in question.”
    Yeah! Take that, rest of world!

  39. 39
    chilidog99

    I think that you all underestimate birtherthink

    Cruz is Cuban, thus he is ineligible.

    QEDuhhh

    ;)

  40. 40
    kermit.

    raven: Let’s see the real birth certificate. The long form one.
    .
    And not the photoshopped one they’ll show on the internet.

  41. 41
    composer99

    What’s the over/under that Monckton will go about his self-styled “analysis” of Cruz’ eligibility to be POTUS?

    (Also, punctuation gurus: do you add the “s” after an apostrophe denoting possession when it comes after the letter z?)

  42. 42
    gertzedek

    @Captain Mike — you have to be a “natural-born US Citizen”…i.e., you can’t be a naturalized citizen. Being born a US citizen (even if it wasn’t in the US) is enough to pass muster.

  43. 43
    gertzedek

    @composer99 — you add the “s” after the apostrophe even if it comes after an “s” UNLESS the “s” was to pluralize the noun. For example, one should write

    “Jesus’s face appeared on 99 pieces of toast.”

    but

    “The pieces’ price on eBay was ridiculous.”

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