Ted Cruz Can Too Become President

 

Over at The Atlantic, David Graham notes that, a) Ted Cruz was born in Canada, but that, b) he could become president anyway.  The money graf:

Helpfully, the Congressional Research Service gathered all of the information relevant to Cruz’s case a few years ago, at the height (nadir?) of Obama birtherism. In short, the Constitution says that the president must be a natural-born citizen. “The weight of scholarly legal and historical opinion appears to support the notion that ‘natural born Citizen’ means one who is entitled under the Constitution or laws of the United States to U.S. citizenship ‘at birth’ or ‘by birth,’ including any child born ‘in’ the United States, the children of United States citizens born abroad, and those born abroad of one citizen parents who has met U.S. residency requirements,” the CRS’s Jack Maskell wrote. So in short: Cruz is a citizen; Cruz is not naturalized; therefore Cruz is a natural-born citizen, and in any case his mother is a citizen. You can read the CRS memo at bottom; here’s a much longer and more detailed 2011 version.

The need to raise huge sums, a press that already loathes him, even his own Republican colleagues in the Senate, many of whose noses he seems already to have put badly out of joint–all that might stand between Ted Cruz and the White House.  But the Constitution won’t.

Somehow, I like knowing that.

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  1. Profile Photo Member
    @CharlesAllen

    I voted for him for Senate, so he has my vote if/when he gets the nomination.  What I will enjoy the most is how the left descends into the rankest Birtherism.  It will be so delicious….

    • #1
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    @BarbaraKidder

    All the impediments to Sen. Ted Cruz’s chances of becoming President ,that you cite,will accrue to his favor with many Republicans.

    He appears to be a man of integrity, intelligence, and good personal morals;  if this hold true, he should appeal to a lot of ‘non-affiliated’ voters, too. 

    Unless the issue of his Constitutional qualification is thoroughly ‘aired’ and put to rest well ahead of the 2016 campaign, it could still be used to thwart his efforts, and we certainly don’t want five Supreme Court Justices vetting our candidates.

    • #2
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    @DavidWilliamson

    I like the cut of this man’s jib.

    • #3
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    @Leigh
    anonymous: 

      Just imagine the left getting on the “North American Union” conspiracy bandwagon against a U.S.-Canada dual national candidate of Hispanic ancestry. · 18 minutes ago

    You’re probably right, but that bandwagon sounds so ridiculous that I wonder if it would work to a candidate’s advantage (sort of like birtherism did to Obama’s).  It sounds really easy to poke fun at the idea of Canada as the sinister villain in a conspiracy. 

    • #4
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    @Leigh
    Douglas: I like Cruz, but I don’t like this. I think “natural born” ought to be defined pretty strictly precisely because it’ll be stretched to meaninglessness. If you’re born on foreign sovereign soil, then the principles of Jus Soli would seem to apply, no? (And yes, I know we give dual citizenship out, but I don’t like THAT either). Simply declaring that you get citizenship no matter where you’re born if  your parents are citizens would be Jus Sanguinis, would it not? It seems we’re trying to have it both ways with this ruling, and being conservative, I think that bodes ill. · 8 hours ago

    I’ve always understood that we do indeed grant citizenship on both principles, and never had the least problem with that. 

    • #5
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    @BarbaraKidder
    David Williamson: I like the cut of this man’s jib. · 0 minutes ago

    Let’s hope he’s in for the long haul.

    • #6
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    @AaronMiller

    Rubio/Cruz would be a winning combo. They are both great communicators. Both come across as honest. Cruz is blunt and Rubio is eloquent.

    And, let’s face it, Republicans will need to bring their A game to beat Hillary. Pray for senility.

    • #7
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    @MatthewHennessey

    This citizenship business is good news for my foreign-born niece and nephew.

    • #8
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    @Shoshanna

    From the early 1980s I deeply mourned the fact that Margaret Thatcher could never be our president.  It’s only been in the last few years that I realized, far too late, she’d simply have needed to acquire a Hawaiian birth certificate.  It can’t be difficult, as doing so appears to present few, if any, obstacles…

    • #9
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    @rayconandlindacon

    From our post on another thread;

    “Our guess?  If Cruz decides to run, his strongest opposition will be the Republican establishment.  It took a Ronald Reagan to be the first Republican since Coolidge who was actually a conservative, and he won by force of an overpowering personality and sunny wit.

    Can Ted Cruz accomplish that, or will we wind up with another GOP retread.”

    • #10
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    @TheKingPrawn
    raycon and lindacon: From our post on another thread;

    “Our guess?  If Cruz decides to run, his strongest opposition will be the Republican establishment.  It took a Ronald Reagan to be the first Republican since Coolidge who was actually a conservative, and he won by force of an overpowering personality and sunny wit.

    Can Ted Cruz accomplish that, or will we wind up with another GOP retread.” · 21 minutes ago

    I think (hope) the party base is finally fed up with the establishment candidates. The problem is that too many people without a vested interest in the party are allowed to vote in the primaries and choose our candidates.

    • #11
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    @billy

    As much as I appreciate Ted Cruz, I don’t see him as being an effective president.

    • #12
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    @Leigh

    I like Ted Cruz and for all I know he’d make a good president someday.  But… We have a whole generation of governors with actual executive experience who will be finished with or winding up their second terms come 2016.  Why are we stuck on the freshman Senators?  Rubio and Paul and Cruz are exciting, but give them time to get experience and prove themselves.

    • #13
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    @CharlesAllen

    Hey, if the man who called Cruz a ‘whacko bird’ (and also happened to be born outside of the United States) can run for President without question…..

    • #14
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    @TheKingPrawn
    Leigh: I like Ted Cruz and for all I know he’d make a good president someday.  But… We have a whole generation of governors with actual executive experience who will be finished with or winding up their second terms come 2016.  Why are we stuck on the freshman Senators?  Rubio and Paul and Cruz are exciting, but give them time to get experience and prove themselves. · 3 minutes ago

    I’d prefer they not be corrupted actually.

    • #15
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    @BrentB67

    Rubio couldn’t carry Ted Cruz’s dirty shorts after this ObamaCare styled attempt at immigration. The best thing that could happen to Marco Rubio is that his ‘reform’ fails, he goes into hiding for 2 years and comes out after everyone has forgotten.

    • #16
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    @DespairTroll
    Charles Allen: Hey, if the man who called Cruz a ‘whacko bird’ (and also happened to be born outside of the United States) can run for President without question….. · 24 minutes ago

    Edited 23 minutes ago

    Coco Solo was a US naval base, and would be considered US soil.  McCain’s natural born-ness would not have been in question.

    Edit:  Check that.  Coco Solo was not considered US soil until 1937, when this was passed, retroactively granting McCain natural born citizen status.  McCain was born in 1936.  

    Kinda takes the meaning out of the words, doesn’t it?  But I suppose, as the term is undefined by the Constitution, that is is Congress’s job to determine who is and is not a natural born citizen.  They did vote in favor of McCain in 2008 on this issue in a nonbinding resolution.

    • #17
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    @JosephStanko

    That has always been my understanding of the “natural-born citizen” clause, and I think it fits with the common-sense meaning.

    That’s also why I never saw the point of the whole “birther” controversy.  Obama’s mom was a citizen, so he’s a natural-born citizen, whether he was born in Hawaii or not.  What a lot of fuss over nothing.  There’s plenty of legitimate reasons to criticize the President, let’s stick to those.

    • #18
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    @EricHines

    The party’s establishment needs to go.  But as Kimberly Strassel said

    Take the gun fight. A month ago, the president’s gun package was in tatters. The GOP had sat back and let Democratic infighting claim the spotlight. The headlines were about how Mr. Obama’s proposals for an “assault weapons” ban, and magazine-capacity limits, and universal background checks were all about to die—at the hands of his own Senate Democrats.Into this perfect Democratic storm flew Mr. Cruz…vowing to filibuster any bill that undermined Second Amendment rights.The Cruz faction wanted to make a point—to prove (as if anyone doubted it) that the GOP believes in the “Constitution.” The Republicans voting to proceed to a debate and votes wanted a political win, exposing Democratic divisions and forcing Mr. Obama to take sole responsibility for the defeat of his first second-term agenda item.

    Cruz still needs to learn to pick his fights.

    Eric Hines

    • #19
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    @DespairTroll

    Where was this legalizing when Obama was under attack by crazy right wingers?  Now we’re going to loosen up when it might help someone who’s been on the scene for 5 minutes and knows to sprinkle words we like in his speeches?  I can only imagine the circus if he throws his hat in the ring.

    Are we that anxious to commit collective political suicide?  This Cruz For President campaign is complete and utter madness.

    • #20
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    @Leigh
    The King Prawn

    I’d prefer they not be corrupted actually. · 59 minutes ago

    Well, really I’d prefer that they prove incorruptible before we put them into the position with the most temptation for corruption.

    All Senators do is talk and cast votes — usually in reaction to the politics of the day, rarely setting the agenda.  It’s not just experience — when you examine a governor’s career (so long as you do it with a decent understanding of their state) you sometimes get a better feel for their real priorities. 

    I have good reason to be confident that Scott Walker is 1) a serious budget-cutter and 2) a competent one.  I think Marco Rubio is equally serious (though all I have to go on is some rhetoric and a few votes), but I really have no way of evaluating his competence.  It says nothing negative about Rubio that I would be more ready to trust Walker with the highest office.

    • #21
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    @Douglas

    I like Cruz, but I don’t like this. I think “natural born” ought to be defined pretty strictly precisely because it’ll be stretched to meaninglessness. If you’re born on foreign sovereign soil, then the principles of Jus Soli would seem to apply, no? (And yes, I know we give dual citizenship out, but I don’t like THAT either). Simply declaring that you get citizenship no matter where you’re born if  your parents are citizens would be Jus Sanguinis, would it not? It seems we’re trying to have it both ways with this ruling, and being conservative, I think that bodes ill.

    • #22
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    @Casey

    Rubio is your next President. I guarantee it.

    • #23
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    @JohnnyDubya

    The whole point of the “natural born citizen” clause is to ensure that the president is and always has been a US citizen, without ever having had fealty to a foreign government. To exclude lifelong US citizens born of US citizen parents outside the US is absurd and is not consistent with the Founders’ intent.

    Whether or not Cruz is the next nominee or president, one thing is for sure: The GOP needs a candidate who is as well-spoken, passionate, and able to robustly defend conservative principles as Sen. Cruz.

    • #24
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    @Babci

    “… children of United States citizens born abroad, and those born abroad of one citizen parents (sic) who has met U.S. residency requirements,” the CRS’s Jack Maskell wrote.”

    Joseph Stanko: That’s also why I never saw the point of the whole “birther” controversy.  Obama’s mom was a citizen, so he’s a natural-born citizen, whether he was born in Hawaii or not.  

    I hate to bring this up but I can’t let it stand without comment.  Maskell mentions above that when only one parent is a U.S. citizen, that parent must meet residency requirements.  If Obama was NOT born in Hawaii, Stanley Dunham, being so young, did not live in the U.S. long enough to meet those residency requirements and thus, could not pass citizenship to her son.  Hairsplitting?  Perhaps.  But, if you are going to hang everything on these legal qualifications to determine citizenship, you can’t disregard the inconvenient ones.  

    I still think the Founders, in choosing “natural-born” wording to limit only presidential candidates, not congressmen or senators, intended a much narrower construction.

    And for those of you who keep putting Rubio on the 2016 ticket…check his citizenship status.

    • #25
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    @JosephStanko
    Douglas: Simply declaring that you get citizenship no matter where you’re born if  your parents are citizens would be Jus Sanguinis, would it not?

    But that’s how the law works, and has for many years.  I don’t think there’s anything new or controversial about that part.  No one thinks Sen. Cruz should apply for a green card or be deported, right?  Everyone agrees he’s a citizen.

    • #26
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    @ScarletPimpernel

    In 1790, the First Congress declared that the child of a citizen, wherever born, was a “natural born” American citizen.

    http://lcweb2.loc.gov/cgi-bin/ampage?collId=llsl&fileName=001/llsl001.db&recNum=227

    That followed the principles of nature outlined in key Law of Nature and of Nations’ treatises of the 18th century, most notably Vattel. It also followed the ideas of the Declaration. The founders disagreed with the British about how citizens were created and how one may cease to be a citizen/ subject, after all. 

    • #27
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    @ScarletPimpernel

    Deleted. Darn Ipad!

    • #28
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    @Babci
    Scarlet Pimpernel: In 1790, the First Congress declared that the child of a citizen, wherever born, was a “natural born” American citizen.

    http://lcweb2.loc.gov/cgi-bin/ampage?collId=llsl&fileName=001/llsl001.db&recNum=227

    You misrepresented your own citation…it says “that the child of CITIZENS,” …you need TWO of those citizens.

    To understand the Constitution, you have to understand INTENT.  The Founders were very rational human beings.  They were establishing a new nation.  Wouldn’t they want a President who was undeniably loyal to only one nation…the new one they had just fought to establish?    

    • #29
  30. Profile Photo Coolidge
    @iWe
    Eric Hines: The party’s establishment needs to go.  But as Kimberly Strassel said

      Into this perfect Democratic storm flew Mr. Cruz…vowing to filibuster any bill that undermined Second Amendment rights.The Cruz faction wanted to make a point—to prove (as if anyone doubted it) that the GOP believes in the “Constitution.

    Cruz still needs to learn to pick his fights.

    Eric Hines · 22 hours ago

    I disagree! What Cruz did is BAD for GOP senatorial politics – but precisely how an *executive* should behave.

    The principle is more important than who gets blamed. Cruz got it right.

    • #30
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