In a development sure to amuse us all for the next three years, the Tea Party’s favorite potential 2016 nominee, Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) has released his birth certificate. And, unlike President Obama’s, Cruz’s document shows that he, unmistakably, was indeed born on foreign soil. Calgary, Canada, to be exact.
According to The Dallas Morning News, “The U.S. Constitution allows only a ‘natural born’ American citizen to serve as president. Most legal scholars who have studied the question agree that includes an American born overseas to an American parent, such as Cruz.” Cruz’s mother was born in Delaware, and his father in Cuba.
And, as Rick Ungar wrote in Forbes, “Were we to buy into the birtherism claim that Obama was, indeed, born in Kenya, then he too would have been foreign born as the son of an American mother and a father who was a citizen of a foreign land.”
The fun part will be watching those on the right twist and bend their belief systems to announce that Cruz’s mother was American, so he is automatically a natural-born citizen, no matter where he was born! How could anyone think otherwise? Asserts Allahpundit on HotAir.com:
Tens of millions of Americans would be willing to vote for Ted Cruz; to strike him from the ballot on a technicality in an ambiguous case would be momentously undemocratic. Against that backdrop, the Supreme Court would almost certainly end up reading ‘natural born’ in the narrowest way, excluding anyone who was born abroad of two non-citizen parents but including everyone else. Cruz, who was born in Canada but whose mother was a U.S. citizen, would qualify…because courts don’t want to be seen as hard-ass enforcers of what’s perceived by many to be an unusually archaic bit of the Constitution.
Ah, so now it’s a “technicality.” It’s only “an unusually archaic bit of the Constitution” that can be swept aside for your own right-wing favorite candidate, but it’s an inviolable, sacred screed when it comes to anyone on the left. What’s more, we should change it for Cruz:
Given the angst and ambiguity over the ‘natural born’ clause in the last two cycles, why not pass an amendment to replace it with something like, say, a 25-year residency requirement? People who take certain draconian disqualifying actions, like committing felonies, are an exception, but what action has Cruz taken? Replace ‘natural born’ with a residency requirement.
So if you’re keeping score, here we have a Democrat born in the U.S. to one American citizen and one foreign citizen, and a Republican born abroad to one American citizen and one foreign citizen, but the foreign-born Republican is apparently the one eligible for the presidency. Yet even if that Democrat had been born abroad, birthers would still see the Republican — born in the exact same circumstances — as being “more American.” But just in case, we should amend the Constitution to make sure there’s no way our foreign-born candidate won’t be allowed to run.
Funny how things change when it’s you, eh?
Of course, this “it’s different for us” (better-known as “IOKIYAR,” or “it’s OK if you’re a Republican”) hypocrisy on this subject is nothing new — in 2004, Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) introduced a Constitutional amendment calling for a similar change in the law to accommodate the then-prevailing notion on the GOP side that Austrian-born Arnold Schwarzenegger might one day make a good commander-in-chief.
Cruz himself is quite adamant — and quite correct — that having an American mother automatically conferred U.S. citizenship on him at birth. “My mother was born in Wilmington, Delaware. She’s a US citizen, so I’m a US citizen,” he told ABC’s This Week. “I’m not going to engage in a legal debate. The facts are clear. 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.”
Photo: Dallas Morning News
Copyright 2013 The National Memo